The 2021 Veloster N will go on sale this fall with an eight-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission, Hyundai announced Wednesday. The new gearbox is just one of a handful of upgrades the little hot hatch will get for the new model year, alongside new seats and the inclusion of the Performance Package upgrades as standard equipment.
Hyundai first teased the new gearbox back in the spring. While the Veloster and Veloster Turbo have been available with automatic gearboxes since their introduction, this will be the first time Hyundai has offered one in the hot N model. Manual transmissions may still be the ideal choice for enthusiasts, but a well-behaved DCT can be both a performance upgrade and a convenience feature, so in our minds, this falls into the "why not?" category.
Hyundai is no stranger to dual-clutch gearboxes either, having offered them in multiple incarnations of the Veloster and Sonata, but this is its first with eight forward gears, and is one of its few performance-oriented applications, to boot. Hyundai even brands the seven-speed unit in the Veloster Turbo as "EcoShift." Like most sporty DCTs, the Veloster N's will ship with paddle shifters and a launch control feature.
This new wet-clutch unit has been endurance-tested to ensure "sustained high-performance" levels, Hyundai says, backing its claim up with some footage of the Veloster N being hammered around what appears to be its California City proving grounds. Hyundai is also baking the current Veloster N's Performance package equipment — which includes the mechanical limited-slip differential — into the base model, which should make life easier for shoppers. Hyundai's suite of active driver assistance tech is also coming to the N as standard equipment.
The 2021 model year changeover will also add a new set of lightweight, more aggressively bolstered "N Light" sport seats. Hyundai says they're 4.4 pounds lighter than the old chairs, and they even have a neat little illuminated "N" logo.
Hyundai will not announce pricing for the 2021 Veloster N until later this year, but we expect an increase in MSRP to account for the additional standard equipment. Look for the new models to hit dealer lots in October.