Photo of 2014 Hyundai Veloster, just before it underwent front crash testing, courtesy of NHTSA.

Photo of 2014 Hyundai Veloster, just before it underwent front crash testing, courtesy of NHTSA.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has awarded a five-star overall safety rating -- the agency’s highest overall score given -- to the all-new 2014 Hyundai Veloster.

The Veloster scored four stars in front and rollover crash tests, and five stars in the side crash test. Calspan Corp. conducted the crash tests in mid-February. 

This is the first time the Veloster has been rated under NHTSA’s tougher tests and five-star rating system as part of the agency’s New Car Assessment Program (NCAP).

The Veloster employs a vehicle stability management (VSM) system, which monitors electronic stability control (ESC) and motor-driven power steering (MDPS).

For the 2014 model year, the Veloster comes in several configurations: Veloster, Veloster Turbo and the RE:FLEX and Veloster Turbo R-Spec. All variants use Hyundai’s 1.6-liter Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engine. Veloster Turbo and Veloster Turbo R-Spec receive a force-fed diet of high-pressure air through a new, twin-scroll turbocharger.

“The Veloster nameplate was designed to bring a new, unconventional look to the subcompact car segment without compromising occupant safety,” said Scott Margason, director of product planning for Hyundai Motor America. “Through the employment of high-tech safety systems like Electronic Brake-force Distribution and Brake Assist and the use of high-strength yet lightweight materials during construction, we are able to deliver a package that is unique, but safer than ever.”

All Velosters are given Hyundai’s braking package, featuring four-wheel disc brakes and an anti-lock braking system (ABS). The system’s brake assist provides maximum braking force when a panic stop is detected, and electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) automatically adjusts the braking force to front and rear axles based on vehicle loading conditions.

Additionally, all Velosters feature six airbags, including dual front, front seat-mounted side-impact, and front and rear side curtain airbags, along with a rear-view camera and daytime running lights.

The Veloster joins the Hyundai Elantra, Elantra GT, Genesis, Genesis Coupe, Santa Fe, Santa Fe Sport and Sonata, which all received a five-star overall rating from NHTSA in their most-recent model years.