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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
PCOTY: The Hyundai Veloster N? Yes, you read that right. Now read the rest:

R&T: PCOTY

We did fine but as must be with a ten year old design, The GT is a bridesmaid, not the bride. If you don't want to read the whole story, the short take is that the GT gets confirmation as the car the editors would actually buy for themselves. The lack of now expected refinement (aftermarket infotainment, feature deficit, etc) held it back from outright victory. But we know that. Lotus cars have alway been about prioritizing feel and joy, and in that department even the experts agree. I still say the retail price of a loaded GT is a bit of handicap compared to the others, but if that's your problem, buy a 400 and get 95% of the essential goodness. As for me, between a Veloster N and a GT? Well, that's easy!
 

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I can hear the howls of rage from Stuttgart. 馃槀
 

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LOL, good for Hyundai. This may have also been a plan by R&T to get some PR for themselves...

The new style implemented at R&T is more casual and not as serious as it used to be. Seems the new Editor is bent on making it similar to the rest of the rags. As a very long time reader (40+ yrs), I'm not sure what to make of it yet. :unsure:
 

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Veloster only has one issue. FWD NOT!!
 

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Their choice of nomenclature is suggestive: Performance car of the year. Not sports car of the year, and not muscle car of the year, either. 'Performance' is a rather fuzzy term.

I think this is sort of their attempt at the Opel station wagon review that made C&D's reputation back in the '70s. In one respect I'm glad to see it - the emperor has been wearing way too many expensive clothes for way too long, and the fact is that the commonest actually sporting car over the last two decades has been the hot hatch and its compact sedan siblings. I see more GTIs, Focus RSs and Velosters than I do 86s or Miatas, and I see vastly more of both than I do more traditional sports cars.

Now a better question is why a 'vette, Mustang Cobra, or Charger lost out to a hot hatch. None is a halo car any more than the Veloster is. Oh wait...they're not even in the test list. How convenient. I'm guessing this is a populist push to find something under $50K to hang the title on. If so, then everything but the Miata was out of the running to start with.

I think a rather jaded view of who buys how many ads in Hearst publications might figure into it too: Criteria from their first page:

  • Outright speed and testing numbers are part of the package, but they don鈥檛 determine the winner. Beyond sheer pace, a car has to bring emotion to the table.
    [*]The car must embrace track duty while still being enjoyable on the road.
    [*]Technology has to be used in service of the driver, not just added speed. Feedback and sensation via complexity is great, but complexity alone doesn鈥檛 cut it.
    [*]Lastly, we ask ourselves, would any other manufacturer build it? Does the car feel uniquely of its story and brand, with a personality all its own?
They make it clear that it's not about lap times, nor indeed about any quantity of objective criteria. Note that all four bullets are about sensation, not function, which makes them all entirely subjective. Convenient. They could have justified any winner from a Rolls Royce to a GT3 Carrera with these.

I have a little trouble reading some of their criteria with a straight face when applied to the Hyundai: "Does the car feel uniquely of its story and brand, with a personality all its own?" Yes, it has the feeling of quirky Korean mishmash design and the perfect personality to be the next generation pizza delivery rocket sled after the depreciation kicks in.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Their choice of nomenclature is suggestive: Performance car of the year. ......................
I have a little trouble reading some of their criteria with a straight face when applied to the Hyundai: "Does the car feel uniquely of its story and brand, with a personality all its own?" Yes, it has the feeling of quirky Korean mishmash design and the perfect personality to be the next generation pizza delivery rocket sled after the depreciation kicks in.
They're saying it should be judged against other hot hatches or everyday cars which are as you say, the most relevant sporty cars to mot people. They go through a list of stuff that was invited but unavailable for the test. Also the car must be new or substantially new for inclusion. I suspect the GT500 might have been actually released since these articles have long lead times. They make a point of explaining a similar scenario in respect to the Vette, which did show up. The fact that they didn't rank the other survivors is different than recent years.

It is an odd result but I think these guys are the best young turks in the business at the moment. The disappearance of the independent print mags is just another sign of the times. The differences between C&D, Automobile and MT are essentially gone....the same crew is writing the content for all three. R&T (I think) remains the most independent editorial /writing staff of the bunch.

I'm a hot hatch guy myself. FWD is a disadvantage but I own a GTI now and woulkd consider something similar again (heart leans towards a Guilia daily at the moment). I've driven the Civic Type R (very fun), Golf R (torson, but very smart car) various Subies, and if the Veloster is their equal or superior for 30K, it 's more relevant news for most people than the new Corvette or Porsche. It is hard to see how anybody would pick it over an LT, A Carrera S....or an Evora.....but in fact 500 times more people will do exactly that than will buy one of our cars. From that point of view.......
 

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Personally, I stopped paying attention to magazines/publications about 5 years ago. I used to have subscriptions to all of them, then just got tired of the incessant ad-pushing, manufacturer incentivized opinion pieces the publications are filled with. Also, unless the magazine folks / writers of these reviews are an ex-pro racer with some pedigree, I think their opinions on 'balance' and 'chassis' and 'suspension' and 'steering feel' and 'front end grip' are absolutely worthless to me.

I don't really take any of their annual ratings/reviews seriously. I learned long ago that my personal experience driving, owning something is what counts and is very often completely unrelated to what some so called experts in magazines would have me believe. Owning a Lotus which is so rare is a special feeling, and that's before you even get to getting in it and driving away.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
No doubt. Nobody buys a new Lotus unless they enjoy swimming upstream. For me it's nice to have my opinion confirmed by people who make it their business to drive a lot. I try not to have my opinion be overly influenced by them, however. The mags are a dying business but I still take them. I think they remain the most available news conduit, notwithstanding the omnipresent web. I have to agree that getting mags does seem pointless in 2019.

Anyway, the R&T crowd are fans. They do Lotus considerable good. Although this was a strange and unlikely result.
 

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I have a friend that used to work at the original HKS USA in Gardena. He's now an engineer at Hyundai Huntington Beach, Ca.

They are VERY serious about making performance cars. I've been to some of their factory events and they spend some big money for testing and pro drivers/engineers.


 

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Any comparison that pits 200k cars against 30k cars is just silly

Really , is someone going to choose a Veloster over an Evora?

I think not.

If they thought the Veloster was a really good car, they should have tested it against its competition.
 

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Any comparison that pits 200k cars against 30k cars is just silly

Really , is someone going to choose a Veloster over an Evora?

I think not.

If they thought the Veloster was a really good car, they should have tested it against its competition.
And that was the point I was making when I said its only real competition in the list was the miata. There was a Mclaren, a Miata, and the Veloster all in the group together. Pretty much all these three cars have in common is four wheels on the ground and internal combustion. Frankly, a stang, a charger, and a camaro have more in common with the veloster than the Miata, the Lotus, or the McLaren do, and a much better assortment would have been the WRX wagon, the hottest GTI variant, a Focus RS, etc.

Looks a whole lot like product placement for Hyundai to me. That said, they said very kind things about the Lotus while also damning it for exactly the qualities that a driver wants in a car - they complained that you could hear the engine and that the car had actual feedback instead of computer-simulated feedback. I have to regard this as a profound amount of not getting it.
 

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The comparo isn't about best quantitative measurement, it's about fun to drive for what you get - smiles per hour. The first several pages of the article explain this. Most of the cars represented themselves well. I'm sure last year some were upset the Lotus did so well compared to cars costing twice as much. All that really matters is if you are enjoying your Lotus. If it's the perception of others, plenty of other marques out there are happy to have your business...
 

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These articles are usually just fodder for the rest of the publications. Future tests etc. My LEAST favorite day ever at track was with a hyperecaffinatated nurse art WGI that decided to come into the bus stop WAY faster than she ever did before in a tuned GTI. Damn thing did the most lurid underster plow all the way trhough it was quite unsettling. No rotation just LURID understeer. If it was RWD, we could have done so much more, but when 2 tires are done.......Was always the same in winter. Sure they'd climb but....no fun.
 

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My Celica is FWD, as they all are after 1988 or something like that. It's my winter beater. It's also heavy (convertible) and has the truck-engine-like torque monster 2.2L 5S-FE (Camry) engine in it with 5 speed, because I don't like slush boxes. The result of all this is that it barks the tires starting off across a freshly painted stop strip on a rainy day. I've gotten very good at managing engine torque, brakes, and steering to stay within the limits of the front wheels' friction limit.

It's definitely harder to deal with at the limit than a RWD car (the Grand Marquis is the tool of choice for really sloppy days because of RWD, limited slip, long wheelbase, and more ground clearance). That's yet another reason why a FWD hot hatch shouldn't be compared with a serious performance car - they just aren't really comparable if you're actually using all the performance. I'm guessing Hyundai has invested a lot of effort in traction management software to fake the driver into believing that the car sticks better than it does at the limit.
 

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VERY interesting.

I'm awaiting my GT, but always 2nd guessing the decision I made because of my VERY limited driving experience before deciding. In this case, #2 was a Boxster Spyder. Which was also driven ( Matt Farah Boxster Spyder ). I wanted to buy the most engaging drivers car, with a radio and A/C. Lots of discussion on the engagement by the GT. The Spyder was about the engine - only(?). That article was much more informative by what was NOT said, not criticized nor compared. For me, the GT is the winner.
 

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VERY interesting.

I'm awaiting my GT, but always 2nd guessing the decision I made because of my VERY limited driving experience before deciding. In this case, #2 was a Boxster Spyder. Which was also driven ( Matt Farah Boxster Spyder ). I wanted to buy the most engaging drivers car, with a radio and A/C. Lots of discussion on the engagement by the GT. The Spyder was about the engine - only(?). That article was much more informative by what was NOT said, not criticized nor compared. For me, the GT is the winner.
"The car the most of them would want to own" I thought was as good an an endorsement as you get. Every choice is a trade-off.

Personally the only car I enjoyed driving more was the 458 (except for no manual transmission), but it also didn't have the seats in the back, got too much negative attention/lil bit douchy, and cost 2X as much, and you can't put more than 35k on the drivetrain nor ever work on it yourself if you care about residuals... Just enjoy what you got! :D
 

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Granted TCR has taken FWD to a whole different level, but by and large most series with FWD & RWD cars have always had to bias everything to keep the FWD stuff competitive. TCR is pretty much the extreme you can do to FWD. Very impressive but its always about saving some front tire at the end of the race so timeS climb a lot. YOU SEE THE hYU NDAI GUYS (WHO COME OUT WITH US OFTEN) CRANK OUT A HALF DOZEN HELLACIOUS LAPS, THEN DIVE BACK IN TO COOL THE RUBBER

Back on point. Of course the Evora GT is the car they would want to own. WE ALL KNOW THAT.....SOME OF US FOR YEARS NOW!!!
 
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