SENSATIONAL RUN CONTINUES
THIRD GEN HYUNDAI CROWD PLEASER KEEPS IMPROVING
HYUNDAI has had a sensational run with its i30, introduced in 2007 and an instant success. The second generation was even better and the just-released third gen, billed as the 're-invented i30' looks to be another winner for the Korean giant.
The i30 spent many months as Australia's top-selling car, won the Car of the Year award multiple times and the latest comes in petrol and diesel, in Active, Elite, SR and Premium models and with manual or automatic transmission.
The hatch is a bit more elegant, and also a tad taller, wider and longer, and comes with a lot of desirable standard features, even in the base $20,950 Active model.
But every one of the range gets an 8.0-inch tablet screen with satellite-navigation, SUNA traffic updates, DAB+ digital radio and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity.
Also standard throughout are a reversing camera, parking sensors, cruise control, digital speedo, seven airbags, and alloy wheels.
Our test car was a Premium diesel with a 100kW/300Nm 1.6litre turbo and seven-speed automatic shifter. The diesel motor is standard in the mid-spec Elite and top-ranking Premium, the latter priced at $33,950.
It's a nicely finished car with space for up to five in comfortable surroundings with excellent visibility and wanting for nothing in equipment.
It has autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind-spot warning, lane-change assist, adaptive cruise control, rear cross-traffic alert, fine digital instrumentation, an Android wireless charging pad, climate control, electric park brake and keyless start.
The leather-trimmed beauty has LED daytime running and headlights, a full-length glass sunroof, heated and cooled seats and runs on 17-inch alloys.
That is a very comprehensive package.
The boot has 395litres of luggage space and houses a full-size spare wheel, which is pretty rare these days, and if you pop the back seats down, the load space increases to 1300litres.
Plus there are four tie-down hooks and a luggage net.
OK, so it's got everything that opens and shuts, but what does it drive like? Even better than it looks. The turbo-diesel's massive 300Nm gives ample urge for quick getaways or easy cruising, and uses an average 4.7litres/100km, or about half of what one would expect from a comparable petrolpowered car.
Also, the seven-speed selfshifter is smooth and the reworked suspension gives a comfy but compliant, almost Euro, ride.
It sails through corners easily and sans fuss, stays level and would please drivers who like to add a touch of verve to their transport.
There's also a more powerful and sportier i30 in the SR, which, for the same price, has independent rear suspension and 150kW under its bonnet.
Another magnet is Hyundai's five-year/unlimited distance warranty, roadside assist and servicing plan.
Verdict: Much to like, nothing that didn't please.
Hyundai's latest i30.