Iload is ris­ing star of NZ van mar­ket

New Zealand LCV - - 2017VAN GUIDE | HYUNDAI ILOAD -

HYUNDAI’S ILOAD TICKS ALL THE MID-SIZED VAN BOXES WITH good car­ry­ing ca­pac­ity, ease of load­ing, a de­cent amount of pulling power and good fuel econ­omy.

Its driv­ing po­si­tion and cabin re­fine­ment, com­fort and low noise lev­els make for a pleas­ant work­place for peo­ple who spend their day in the driver’s seat.

And those fac­tors have com­bined with bet­ter avail­abil­ity to put the Korean van into sec­ond place on the NZ mar­ket, be­hind the Toy­ota Hi­ace.

Hyundai sold 1012 iloads in 2016, leapfrog­ging the Ford Tran­sit; by the end of April this year, it was still in sec­ond place with 371 sales to the Ford’s 253. The Hyundai is run­ning 119 sales ahead of the same pe­riod of 2016 when it re­tailed 252 vans. The freshen-up it re­ceived in 2016 has clearly helped boost sales.

The make-over in­cluded a facelift and some worth­while tech up­grades.

Its user-friendly seven-inch touch-screen in­cor­po­rates Ap­ple Carplay and Blue­tooth phone and au­dio stream­ing ca­pa­bil­ity, and dis­plays the high-res­o­lu­tion re­vers­ing cam­era that has re­placed the pre­vi­ous rear view mir­ror-mounted dis­play screen.

We’ve never been big fans of re­vers­ing cam­eras dis­play­ing in the mir­ror as they’re too small and the mir­ror is sus­cep­ti­ble to glare, but many man­u­fac­tur­ers con­tinue to fit them.

There’s also a use­ful fold-down cen­tre arm­rest that in­cor­po­rates a handy stor­age area and two cup-hold­ers, and there are cup hold­ers that re­tract into the dash panel too.

A fur­ther en­hance­ment has been made to the light­ing sys­tem, where the head­lights are con­stantly on.

Strictly speak­ing, it’s not a Day­time Run­ning Lamp (DRL) sys­tem in the true sense, where LEDS are gen­er­ally used.

But it does make the ve­hi­cle more vis­i­ble on the road, so it’s a wel­come safety up­grade to the four star Ancap-rated iload/imax range.

With 4.4 cu­bic me­tres of cargo space, the iload isn’t the most cav­ernous mid-sized van, but with a floor that mea­sures 2450mm long by 1260mm wide be­tween the whee­larches, there’s am­ple room to cart eight by four sheet build­ing prod­ucts.

And with good ac­cess via the tail­gate or twin slid­ing side doors, load­ing and un­load­ing is made easy. To se­cure the load, there are 10 tie-down points.

For trade crews with a need to seat more, the iload can be op­tioned with a sec­ond row of seats, pro­vid­ing for seat­ing for five, al­though ob­vi­ously, that re­duces cargo space.

The iload’s 2497cc com­mon-rail di­rect-in­jected tur­bod­iesel fit­ted to our test ve­hi­cle de­liv­ered 125kw of max­i­mum power at 3600rpm and pro­duced its peak torque of 441Nm be­tween 2000rpm and 2250rpm.

On iload man­u­als, the sim­i­lar ca­pac­ity com­mon-rail diesel engine pro­duces 100kw at 3800rpm and 343Nm of torque be­tween 1500 and 2500rpm.

A man­ual iload has a tow rat­ing of 2000kg, and the au­to­matic, is rated at just 1500kg.

Though the ba­sic ve­hi­cle has been around since 2009, the up­grades have added some use­ful high-tech equip­ment, and the cos­metic changes have pro­vided a new fresh look. Gone are the days where a van was a bare-bones shed on wheels. The facelift and spec up­grade have re­sulted in a $1000 price in­crease for the iload, so re­tail pric­ing be­gins at $48,990 for the man­ual, with the au­to­matic car­ry­ing a $50,990 sticker price.

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