After spending a week and racking up over 800 miles in the all-new Veloster N, we come away with high hopes for Hyundai's new N sub brand. For despite the tight quarters, small back seat, and funky three-door layout, the 2019 Veloster N wows with impressive acceleration, solid handling, and a stirring value proposition.
Exterior tweaks, revised suspension tuning, and a new badge mark the transition from last year's GT Sport to the 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N Line – a model that continues to impress with entertaining ride and handling, good fuel economy, and upscale interior. But a sunroof and advanced safety features are part of an expensive option package on just the automatic, fuel economy with the manual is only middling, while rear seat legroom is tight.
The all-new 2019 Volvo XC40 arrives with a youthful design, Scandinavian-inspired interior, comfortable ride, and a competent turbo mated to a very good eight-speed automatic. But the design may be too quirky for some tastes, the back seat is tight for more than two, and although leather seats are standard, heating them is an extra-cost option.
Based on a new platform, the all-new 2019 Lexus ES 350 F arrives sporting a sleek, toned shape, feature-laden upscale interior, strong acceleration, and a wide range of advanced safety features. But perfection is eluded as all-wheel drive is unavailable, the infotainment system is overly complex, while it faces still competition in a crossover-obsessed market.