Information about the upcoming Hyundai Veloster Turbo is pretty easy to come by these days, as you might have seen on our site or anywhere else, really, but we’ve got something else up our sleeve.
Ahead of the car’s launch, or even the auto industry standard “first drive,” a senior company executive passed us the care guide owners will receive should they opt for the $1,000 optional matte paint job — a first for the brand.
Clear at the document’s end, there’s space where owners will need to sign, acknowledging an understanding that matte paint requires special care above and beyond a normal finish. Hyundai understandably won’t take responsibility for negligent care and the mess that comes with it, despite offering its standard seven-year warranty. Insisting on a contract that dictates how someone washes their car might seem extreme, but BMW did the same thing when it introduced matte finishes.
That still doesn’t mean you’ll be left to fend for yourself after choosing the frozen look. Enter the care guide: it offers tips and advice to keep the sensitive paint looking new, something that’s quite a bit more involved than the glossy clear coat most cars have. Matte finishes are unusual for a car priced in the low 20′s, a price point where the typical customer might not be as experienced at car care.
First of all, forget about using wax, detail spray, ArmorAll or almost any run-of-the-mill products. Everything needs to be matte paint safe, including the cloth you use. Nothing abrasive can come into play like polishes or glazes and above all, remember that commercial car washes are strictly off limits.
Use an alcohol-based window cleaner, or even just a 50/50 mix of alcohol and deionized water to spot clean pesky bug guts (a matte paint cleaner works too). Spray the spot and wet your microfiber cloth then let the spot soak so it softens. Don’t skip soaking the cloth, using it dry will damage the finish irreparably and it’s going to leave shiny spots that look horribly obvious. Hyundai also suggests saturating a cloth with tar remover and laying it over any stuck-on debris for five minutes to ensure safe removal.
Giving the car a full body wash isn’t really all that different from a normal car, but most people probably don’t know the proper procedure because gas station car washes are a lot faster and easier.
Wash your car in the shade with two buckets of water, one with soap and the other with clean water. Because matte paint is so sensitive, it’s especially important to put a grit guard in your soap pale. It’s just a gridded plastic piece that lets abrasive dirt settle and stay in the bucket rather than riding on your sponge.
Once this is all in place, pre-rinse your car, preferably with a fan-tipped pressure washer under 2,500 psi. Gently wash the car in small sections from the bottom up, using a back and forth motion. Rubbing in circles will leave swirls that look terrible in direct light. Once that’s done, rinse the car, dry it with a damp chamois and repeat if needed.
Finally, use a matte-safe finish like Swisswax Opaque Matte Paint Wax to discourage road muck from sticking to your car, just make sure it’s specifically made for matte paint.
It’s worth noting that matte paint is probably a poor choice if you’re planning to use the Veloster as a daily driver. It looks cool, but unless you have a garage and the time to spot clean and hand wash on a regular basis, it’s going to be a short-lived fairy tale with a sad ending.