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Is The Hyundai Veloster A Sports Car? (Answered)

Is The Hyundai Veloster A Sports Car? (Answered)

In this series of blog posts, we already examined many cars to see if they’re sports cars or not. Today we look at the Hyundai Veloster and put this car to the test to see if it’s best classified as a sports car or something else. However, let’s start with a quick answer:

Both the Hyundai Veloster and Veloster N are not sports cars but sport compacts. The turbocharged Veloster and the N both have enough power to be classified as sports cars. Also, the Veloster has an aerodynamic styling and 2-doors. However, the Veloster is not a sports car because it’s a hatchback and has front-wheel drive.

However, that certainly doesn’t tell the whole story. Below we’ll first look into the power this car brings to the table compared to the weight that it carries. Then, we’ll discuss the car’s design, and we found out if this is sports car-like or if it’s better classified as something else. Finally, we look at the drive system and explain if the Veloster is classified as a sports car for the insurance. Read on!

Power-To-Weight Ratio

Let’s first talk about the power-to-weight ratio of the Veloster. We should do this because it takes into account two of the most important factors of a sports car. First, that’s how powerful the engine is. Second, it’s how light the car is. Sports cars are generally powerful cars for the weight that they have.

However, it’s important to establish some benchmarks here. In this article, we wrote about whether or not the Dodge Dart is a sports car or not. We compared the Dart with other sports cars such as the Mazda MX-5, Toyota GT86, and the BMW Z4.

We found that these cars all have a power-to-weight ratio of 0.07 horsepower per pound or higher. Therefore, we’ll use this as our benchmark for the Veloster. Let’s first see what engines the car has and how much power these engines produce.

  • 2011 – 2018: 1.6L I4 (with and without turbo)
  • 2018 – present: 1.6L I4, 2.0L I4 (with and without turbo)

The first generation of the Veloster generates a total of 140 hp when the 1.6L engine isn’t turbocharged. Suppose you have the turbocharged version, then you’re looking at a proper 204 hp. The second generation of the Veloster produces 147 hp with the 2.0L engine and 201 with the 1.6L engine. If you have the Veloster N, then the 2.0L engine produces 247 hp.

Another important aspect of the power-to-weight ratio is, of course, the weight of the car. Below we’ve outlined the weight of the Veloster and the Veloster N.

  • 2011 – 2018: 2,425 – 2,943 lbs.
  • 2018 – present: 2,822 – 3,036 lbs. for the normal Veloster. 3,036 – 3,247 lbs. for the Veloster N.

The power-to-weight ratio is therefore as follows:

  • 2011 – 2018 Hyundai Veloster without turbo: 0.058
  • 2011 – 2018 Hyundai Veloster with turbo: 0.069
  • 2018 – present Hyundai Veloster 1.6L: 0.066
  • 2018 – present Hyundai Veloster 2.0L: 0.052
  • 2018 – present Hyundai Veloster N 2.0L: 0.076

So, what does this teach us? First, the Veloster N is definitely going to be a sports car in terms of this metric. The 2011 – 2018 Veloster with turbo and 2018 – present-day Veloster with 1.6L engine could be considered sports cars if we are flexible with our criteria. The 2011 – 2018 Veloster without turbo and the 2018 – present-day Veloster with 2.0L engine aren’t sports cars in terms of the power-to-weight that they produce.

Also read: Is The Toyota Celica A Sports Car?


The car’s design is most likely one of the biggest differentiators between ‘normal’ cars and sports cars. The whole goal of a sports car is to make the handling very good. This way, the car can go around a track quickly and efficiently. Therefore, the design of a sports car should be aerodynamic, relatively small, and low to the ground. Also, only 2-door coupes can be considered to be true sports cars.

When we look at the normal version of the Veloster, we see that this is indeed a small, light, 2-door car. However, this Veloster is not a coupe. Officially, it’s a hatchback which means the car’s boot is connected to the passenger area. So, the Veloster may have some features that align it with the sports car category, but it misses one. What you basically have here is a sporty hatchback. Officially not a sports car, even though the turbo version does have the power to be classified as one.

And what about the Hyundai Veloster N? Well, things become really subjective here. Again, we must say that this is a hatchback and not a coupe. However, the car does have an incredibly aggressive and aerodynamic styling and does have the power to be in the sports car category.

So, what is the conclusion here? Well, Hyundai is ahead of us in this case. They also don’t classify the Veloster and Veloster N as sports cars. Rather, they opt for the term ‘sport compact’, which we feel suits all the generations of the Veloster (although some have more ‘sport’ in them than others depending on the engine’s power).

Also read: Is The Nissan 350Z A Sports Car?

Drive System

Finally, there’s the drive system that the car uses. As a general rule of thumb, we can say that sports cars typically have a rear-wheel-drive system. The reason for this is that this is considered to be more fun to drive because it gives you the possibility to drift with the car.

In the case of the Veloster and the Veloster N, we can say that this car makes use of a front-wheel-drive system. This means the car doesn’t fall in the original ‘sports car’ category. Given the research we’ve already done, we would still consider the car to fall into the ‘sports compact’ category because this is simply a better category for the car.

However, let it be clear that having a front-wheel-drive is not an automatic no-go for a sports car. For example, in this article, we already looked at the Honda Civic, and we saw that, even though it’s FWD, some of the Civics are best classified as sports cars.

Is The Hyundai Veloster Considered A Sports Car For Insurance Purposes?

Finally, there’s the question of whether or not a Honda Civic is considered a sports car for insurance purposes. Let it first be said that insurance companies don’t just classify a car as ‘sports car’ or ‘not a sports car.’ Insurance companies take into account many, many different factors to come up with the price. Using and, we found the following:

A 2020 Hyundai Veloster costs an average of $1,624 per year to insure. The Veloster N from 2021 costs an average of $2,400 per year to insure, whereas the 2020 Veloster N costs $2,028 per year.

Having said that, we feel that insurance companies do not specifically classify the normal Veloster as a sports car. Yes, $1,642 per year on average is not the cheapest of them all but certainly not as expensive as other cars. For example, we also looked at the Dodge Challenger in this article, and that one costs $2,270 per year.

Looking at it from that perspective, we do think the Veloster N is classified as a sports car, given that its insurance rates come very close to the one of a Dodge Challenger. Given that the current Veloster N produces 320 hp and is quite lightweight, we also think this is a logical way to go for insurance companies.

Also read: Is The Nissan Maxima A Sports Car?


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