25 October 2012|
|Rally Inspired: 2012 Hyundai Veloster|
Designed to be sporty vehicle with excellent fuel economy, the Hyundai Veloster is an ideal vehicle for drivers that want to get a little more performance from their car without sacrificing gas mileage.
When ARK Performance got its hands on the Veloster, however, just sporty and only a little performance was not what they envisioned for the successor of the now defunct Tiburon.
The purpose behind the modification job that ARK wanted to do was to turn the Veloster into a pseudo rally car crossed over with street performance elements, transforming an already impressive looking vehicle into a mean looking ride that manages 240 whp – a large improvement over the stock Veloster’s 138 hp.
This power upgrade is accomplished with thanks to a number of changes to the 1.6L engine that includes a turbocharger, a turbo manifold, an air and intake filter and an intercooler all from ARK Performance. Also installed are new spark plugs from NGK Iridium, a Turbonetix blow-off valve, Sun Auto ignition wires with suspension additions such as a DT-P track coil-over system.
ARK has also overhauled the Veloster’s exhaust system installing an R-Spec header, up-pipe and down-pipe and topping it off with a very aggressive looking dual tip exhaust tip.
As far as the overall aesthetic goes, professional is the word that comes to mind. Everything from the CFX Designs full body conversion, to the ARK Performance rear wing mount, to the Yokohama 18- by 8.5-inch Advan wheels screams out that the boys at ARK are certified pros!
The odd-sounding color scheme of gunmetal grey and neon green works surprisingly well with the grey acting as more of a canvas so the eye-popping green really stands out. What’s even better about the paint job is how little of the green there actually is.
Speaking further of the professional quality of the job that ARK did is the way the green is only there to catch your eye and have it draw attention to certain areas of the car, almost like a built-in visual tour guide of the vehicle making the exterior aesthetic a functional aspect for enthusiasts and car show judges alike. Just about the only impractical portion of ARK’s Veloster’s external look is the off-center racing stripe that serves as a good reminder this is a rally-inspired car.
Taking a peak inside the vehicle and the rally soul becomes very apparent as the interior is lined with a roll cage painted in the same neon green as the exterior. The dashboard, seats, shift boot and floor mats are all the work of JPM Coachworks and they hover between being colored black or darkish grey with neon green highlights that don’t necessarily serve the same functionality the way the stripes on the exterior do but still look cool and classy.
Also found inside the ARK Performance Veloster is a custom audio box that’s been painted the same neon green as the rest of the car. The audio system that’s been installed is home to Image Dynamics amps, speakers and subs, giving the car the necessary auditory muscle to compete with most other street-performance tuners’ radio setups.
Overall, the ARK Performance Veloster is an incredibly impressive modification job and I’d say they definitely accomplished the goal of transforming a fuel-conscious car into a hybrid between a rally car and a street performance vehicle. The 240 whp is nothing to sneeze at, especially coming out of just a 1.6L engine and is the kind of performance you’d want to show off on the highway. And, the aesthetic of the car, inside and out, screams rally car and is a definite head turner.
This car first made its debut at SEMA 2011 and its rally take on the Veloster must have rubbed off somewhere as 2005 Formula DRIFT champion and Pikes Peak International Hill Climb world record holder Rhys Millen competes in the World Rally Championship driving a rally-specific tuned and modified Veloster.