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  • Comfortable ride; refined diesel engines; more interesting exterior design; improved interior quality; well equipped; long warranty
  • Could still be more fun to drive; diesel engines lack trademark mid-range thrust

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8 / 10



Hyundai i30 Review 2012
Hyundai i30 Review 2012
Hyundai i30 Review 2012
by Luke Madden

It’s five years since the Hyundai i30 arrived as a game-changing model for the South Korean brand, showing the world it could build cars that were recommendable for virtues other than just good value.

The Hyundai i30 wasn’t as good as the best in class, such as the Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus or Mazda 3, but it held its own and has deservedly become a huge seller for Hyundai.

And the second-generation i30 – designed and engineered in Europe – now comes with promises of matching its heralded peers.

It should certainly catch more eyes than its predecessor, which has still accounted for more than 85,000 sales in Australia. Where the original i30 was tidily designed, the new model has more chance of turning heads with its bold crease lines, intricately detailed headlights and daytime running lights.

There’s more pizazz inside, too. The old i30’s cabin was well presented, but now there are more soft-touch materials for the dash and door trims, and a gloss-black centre console, to add a real touch of class and close the gap to the benchmark Golf.

Refinement has improved, too, particularly with the 94kW 1.6-litre turbo diesel turbo diesel we tested in the UK, which is remarkably hushed and rattle-free at low revs.

Like the 81kW version of the same engine, however, the mid range lacks the kind of kick we’ve come to expect from diesels, with the optional six-speed automatic exasperating things despite a 0-100km/h claim of 10.9 seconds (11.5sec for the 81kW variant).

Hyundai i30 Review 2012

Still, at least the auto provides smooth enough progress, though the six-speed manual further improves fuel economy and emissions.

So is it as good to drive as a Golf, Focus or Mazda3? Well, the answer’s still no. The Hyundai i30 is still no thriller on more interesting roads, not helped by steering that remains numb.

Our 94kW diesel test car included Hyundai’s new Flex Steer system, though even if you choose Dynamic – instead of Comfort or Normal modes – only artificial weight is added rather than extra steering feedback.

But the suspension again impresses with its ability to provide comfort for the i30’s occupants, while the interior provides enough space for tall adults, and the boot is a decent size.

Cabin space is helped by an increase in length to 4300m and width to 1780mm, though height comes down to 1470mm to give the i30 a slightly sportier stance.

If the regular Hyundai i30 isn’t practical enough, a ‘i30cw’ wagon version will again be offered.

And even in the Active 81kW model we tested, there’s still plenty of value to be found with standard features including Bluetooth connectivity, daytime running lights, hill-start assist, rear parking sensors, cruise control, and 15-inch alloys.

Specifications for Australian versions of the i30 won’t be available until at least closer to its local launch, though Hyundai’s generous five-year warranty is assured for when it lands in the middle of this year.

The new Hyundai i30 is a strong all-rounder that will undoubtedly keep its rivals on their toes.


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HYUNDAI I30 BREAKDOWN

Hyundai i30 Review 2012
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Hyundai i30 Specs

ACTIVE 1.6 CRDi : GD : 1.6L DIESEL TURBO F/INJ - 6 SP AUTOMATIC - DIESEL - 5D HATCHBACK
Car Details
Make
HYUNDAI
Model
i30
Variant
ACTIVE 1.6 CRDi
Series
GD
Year
2012
Body Type
5D HATCHBACK
Seats
5
Pricing
New Price
N/A
Private Sale
$13,530 - $15,380
Dealer Retail
$14,990 - $17,820
Dealer Trade
$10,800 - $12,300
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
DIESEL TURBO F/INJ
Engine Size
1.6L
Cylinders
DIESEL TURBO 4
Max. Torque
260Nm @  1900rpm
Max. Power
94kW @  4000rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
71.8W/kg
Bore & Stroke
77.2x84.5mm
Compression Ratio
17.3
Valve Gear
VARIABLE DOUBLE OVERHEAD CAM
Drivetrain Specifications
Transmission
6 SP AUTOMATIC
Drive Type
FRONT WHEEL DRIVE
Final Drive Ratio
3.064
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
DIESEL
Fuel Tank Capacity
53Litres
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
5.6L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
1310
Gross Vehicle Weight
Not Provided
Height
1470mm
Length
4300mm
Width
1780mm
Ground Clearance
140mm
Towing Capacity
Brake:1300  Unbrake:500
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
RACK & PINION - POWER ASSISTED
Turning Circle
10.5
Front Rim Size
6.5x16
Rear Rim Size
6.5x16
Front Tyres
205/55 R16
Rear Tyres
205/55 R16
Wheel Base
2650
Front Track
1549
Rear Track
1562
Front Brakes
DISC - VENTILATED
Rear Brakes
DISC
Front Suspension
MacPherson strut, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Rear Suspension
Torsion bar, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Standard Features
Comfort
Air Conditioning
Control & Handling
Electronic Brake Force Distribution, Electronic Stability Program, Traction Control System
Driver
Adjustable Steering Wheel - Tilt & Telescopic, Cruise Control, Multi Function Steering Wheel, Mobile Phone Connectivity, Parking Distance Control, Power Steering, Trip Computer
Entertainment
Radio CD with 6 Speakers
Exterior
Fog Lights - Front, Power Mirrors, Rear Spoiler
Interior
Cloth Trim, Power Windows
Safety
Dual Front Airbag Package, Anti-lock Braking, Head Airbags, Side Airbags, Seatbelts - Pre-tensioners Front Seats
Security
Alarm System/Remote Anti Theft, Central Locking Remote Control, Engine Immobiliser
Optional Features
Exterior
Metallic Paint
Other
Service Interval
12 months /  15,000 kms
Warranty
60 months /  999,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Under Driver Seat On Floor
Country of Origin
Korea