ACE OF BASE

With loads of stan­dard fea­tures and low run­ning costs, the base model Hyundai i30 looks set to build on its big fol­low­ing.

Geelong Advertiser - Motoring - - FRONT PAGE -

HYUNDAI’S third-gen­er­a­tion i30 has ar­rived in Aus­tralia and will please the hun­gry hordes of small-car buy­ers who have “value for money’’ at top their shop­ping list.

As a six-time re­cip­i­ent best small car award Down Un­der, the lat­est i30 makes an­other se­ri­ous pitch for a sev­enth gong with

suite of stan­dard fea­tures and lo­cal en­gi­neer­ing in­put.

The i30 comes in five vari­ants, kick­ing off with the base-spec Ac­tive and run­ning through Elite, Premium, SR SR Premium vari­ants.

But there is noth­ing “ba­sic’’ about the en­try-level Ac­tive, our test car, that comes loaded with gear that will sat­isfy most drivers and par­tic­u­larly those love a good drive­away deal from re­li­able mar­que,

a long war­ranty to match. For just $24,990 drive­away, you get fea­tures in­clud­ing satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion via large, dash­board-mounted eight-inch mul­ti­me­dia in­ter­face, DAB+ dig­i­tal ra­dio, Ap­ple CarPlay and An­droid Auto com­pat­i­bil­ity, steer­ing wheel-op­er­ated voice con­trol a zippy 2.0 litre en­gine. Not bad at all.

The third-gen­er­a­tion i30 is longer and larger, looks pretty good in its new skin with big­ger grille and clean de­sign that rides on stan­dard al­loy wheels (Ac­tive, Elite Premium) 18-inch on

The new i30’s so­phis­ti­ca­tion and tech­nol­ogy plat­form will fur­ther en­hance our best-sell­ing model in Aus­tralia SCOTT GRANT — HYUNDAI AUS­TRALIA

sports vari­ants (SR and SR Premium).

There are clearly styling cues here from Europe, but that’s no bad thing.

Ex­te­rior fit fin­ish is ex­cel­lent and the theme con­tin­ues in­side the i30. In­stru­ments clean easy to read, as trip com­puter func­tions lo­cated be­tween the tachome­ter and speedome­ter that are ac­cessed by a sim­ple flick of a switch on the steer­ing wheel.

All con­trols are use — func­tion­al­ity is high point in the Hyundai and you never feel as if there will be need to stop car con­sult driver hand­book work some­thing out.

The Ac­tive has a tra­di­tional hand-op­er­ated park brake, op­posed the elec­tric set-up in higher specs, and starts up us­ing key, not a but­ton.

ad­di­tion of dig­i­tal ra­dio is fan­tas­tic and of­fers a clearer, crisper lis­ten­ing ex­pe­ri­ence through the Hyundai’s sound sys­tem, par­tic­u­larly on AM band.

Find­ing satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion in a car at this price was a pleas­ant sur­prise. The i30 unit has au­di­ble warn­ings for up­com­ing school zones and the like, with good graph­ics to boot.

There are cuphold­ers in doors cen­tre con­sole, twin 12V out­lets a USB slot up front, plenty of leg room any­one over six-foot tall the old money. Front seats com­fort­able with good bol­ster­ing. Rear-seat legroom is and the hatch will swal­low a cou­ple of small suit­cases. It’s car but cer­tainly not claus­tro­pho­bic. Driv­ing the i30 was lot more fun than ex­pected. While it lacks a turbo, I thought 2.0-litre GDi (ga­so­line di­rect in­jec­tion) did an ex­cel­lent job, mated to the six-speed auto in our demon­stra­tor with its three driv­ing modes — nor­mal, eco and sport. More no­tice­able was the at­ten­tion paid to the sus­pen­sion tune, which has had a great deal of Aus­tralian in­put, and it re­ally shows, with much bet­ter, sharper ride con­trol than you might ex­pect in the small-car class sticker price that’s mid$20,000 range.

The Ac­tive gets plenty of safety fea­tures with seven airbags, hill-start as­sist, elec­tronic brake­force distri­bu­tion and re­vers­ing cam­era.

Blind spot warn­ing is avail­able in the Elite and all spec­i­fi­ca­tions above.

“i30 has been a six-time Aus­tralia’s Best Car win­ner for good rea­sons,’’ Hyundai Mo­tor Com­pany Aus­tralia chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer Scott Grant said.

“It’s also hugely suc­cess­ful model for HMCA and I con­fi­dently pre­dict this hand­some even bet­ter third-gen­er­a­tion i30 will con­tinue that suc­cess.

“The new i30’s in­cred­i­ble over­all so­phis­ti­ca­tion fan­tas­tic tech­nol­ogy plat­form fur­ther en­hance our best-sell­ing model in Aus­tralia.

“And our in­dus­try-lead­ing af­ter-sales iCare cus­tomer care pro­gram, leg­endary five-year/ un­lim­ited kilo­me­tre war­ranty and lifetime ser­vice plan all make it even more at­trac­tive.

“Let’s just say that I look for­ward to wel­com­ing a de­voted group of new i30 own­ers to our Hyundai fam­ily.”

En­gine and trans­mis­sion choices start with the i30 Ac­tive’s stan­dard 120kW/203Nm Nu 2.0-litre GDi petrol four-cylin­der, ei­ther six-speed man­ual or six-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion.

Also avail­able in the i30 Ac­tive, Elite and Premium vari­ants is Hyundai’s 1.6-litre CRDi (com­mon rail diesel in­jec­tion) en­gine mated to a seven-speed, dual-clutch trans­mis­sion (DCT) or six-speed man­ual (Ac­tive vari­ant only).

Avail­able ex­clu­sively in i30 SR sports vari­ants, 150kW/265Nm Gamma 1.6-litre Turbo-GDi petrol comes with a seven-speed DCT or six-speed man­ual.

The i30’s long list of avail­able tech­nolo­gies in­cludes full LED head­lights, wire­less smart­phone charg­ing and heated and ven­ti­lated front seats.

On-road dy­nam­ics have been ex­haus­tively tested op­ti­mised for lo­cal con­di­tions driver pref­er­ences by Hyundai Mo­tor Com­pany Aus­tralia’s highly cre­den­tialed Chas­sis De­vel­op­ment Team.

Sum­ming up, the Ac­tive is a great car for the money, well-specced with plenty of gear in base-trim, and per­fect first young driver or sec­ond car for small fam­ily.

The i30 does ev­ery­thing pretty well, is zippy great han­dling and whets ap­petite the up­com­ing ar­rival of its very hot-hatch sib­ling, i30N.

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