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  • Gutsy turbo-diesel engine; fuel economy; safety; car-like driveability
  • Centre lap-type seatbelts; fixed centre bulkhead; tailgate clearance

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7 / 10



Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
by Matt Brogan

Trade tough, practical and comfortable, iLoad Crew Van covers all bases

Model Tested:

  • 2009 Hyundai iLoad H1 Crew Van; 2.5-litre, four-cylinder, turbo-diesel; five-speed manual; van – $36,490*

Options Available:

  • Metallic Paint $375; Rear Barn Doors $550; ESC with Traction Control $700

CarAdvice Rating:

Words by Matt Brogan Pics by Paul Maric

Hyundai’s i-Series vans have forced a serious re-think on the way we view the humble white van. No longer do we need to endure dull driving dynamics, weak performance and sub-par safety levels because, as I rediscovered this week, this Turkish-built Korean commercial ticks all the boxes expected of a modern work vehicle – and then some.

Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test

The inoffensive looks of the Hyundai iLoad Crew Van house a pleasant and comfortable interior with enough space for five adults – or six at a pinch. An easy to drive, easy to manage vehicle Crew Van excels in providing not only a spacious interior, but one offering a satisfying level of standard equipment that includes an MP3 compatible single CD tuner with auxiliary connection, adjustable steering column, air-conditioning, plus a plethora of commodious storage compartments for all those odd-and-ends.

With the engine upfront cabin heat transfer is minimal, an issue often found in older cab-over-engine designs, and despite the large passenger area on offer, heating and cooling remain effective, thanks primarily to the sealed bulkhead between the passenger and cargo compartments.

The passenger compartment boasts twin sliding doors, a real bonus in tight parking situations, and offer pop-out style windows for ventilation and added visibility. The doors also click conveniently in place when open to prevent accidental closing and jammed fingers when parked on an incline. The mechanism is simply released by pulling on the handle as you slide the door shut. Child locks and child seat mounts are also featured.

A heavy duty bulkhead separates the crew from the cargo behind while still enabling rearward vision and enough capacity for a full-size pallet. Unfortunately the bulk head is not readily removable being both riveted and bolted in place, compromising the Crew Van’s otherwise excellent versatility.

Up back a large cargo area, measuring 1,585mm (L) x 1,620 (W) x 1,350mm (H) – and 1,260mm between the wheel arches – also features six heavy-duty tie-down hooks and a thick urethane matted floor. A generous 1,130kg payload is also on offer which, coupled to a 2,000kg (braked) towing capacity, makes the Crew Van’s trade-tough carrying capacity extremely competitive against similarly spec’ed rivals. A back-saving loading floor height of 605mm makes life easy when jumping in-and-out while also allowing 190mm of ground clearance for no-nonsense access to rough building sites.

In fact the only real issue I found with Crew Van’s cargo area this week was not in its size or practicality, but in the large top-hinged tailgate that doesn’t open quite high enough to stop you hitting your head. Fortunately more practical barn-type doors are available as a cost option.

Under the snub-nose bonnet Crew Van features Hyundai’s gutsy 2.5-litre, four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine. Developing a healthy 125kW of power from 3,800rpm, and ballsy 392Nm of torque from a low 2,000rpm, Crew Van manages surprising performance – even when loaded – while still achieving a car-like flexibility around town.

The five-speed manual gearbox, mated to a light clutch, offers an excellent ratio spread with a shorter first gear for getting heavy loads on the move. Fuel economy is outstanding with this week’s return of just 8.6/100km – just 100ml more than the ADR average – surprising even myself given the amount of weight carried while moving heavy farm machinery this week.

Confident disc braking and pliant strut front / multi-link rear suspension make for a settled and comfortable ride, atypical to that of most commercial vans. That said the otherwise tactile steering does become a little light, and road feel slightly nervous, at highway speeds when cornering a heavily loaded rear.

In yet another affront to the average white van, Hyundai’s iLoad (and iMax) models offer a very respectable level of safety equipment that have led to ANCAP announcing a four-star rating across the range. Standard safety equipment includes dual-front airbags, anti-whiplash head restraints (in five seating positions) and three-point inertia reel seatbelts in all outboard seating positions. ESC and Traction Control are also available as a cost option (not fitted to our road test vehicle).

Disappointingly the Crew Van’s centre seatbelts are of the lap variety while the front centre passenger also misses out on a headrest.

If I could add to the Crew Van’s standard equipment list I’d opt for the inclusion of standard cruise control, Hyundai’s Bluetooth enabled head-unit and a redesigned key, as the current one has an annoyingly positioned side lock/unlock button that is too easily activate when turning the ignition or accidentally in your pocket. Steering wheel mounted audio controls might also have been a nice idea.

Otherwise the Crew Van is pretty hard to top. It’s safe, comfortable, affordable, frugal and boasts an impressive five-year/160,000 kilometre warranty, and when it comes to a commercial vehicle, who could ask for anything more?

For more on Hyundai’s i-Series commercial vans, click on this link.

Ratings:

CarAdvice Overall Rating:
How does it Drive:
How does it Look:
How does it Go:

*Pricing is a guide as recommended to us by the manufacturer.



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Hyundai iLoad Crew Van Review & Road Test
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Hyundai iLoad Specs

TQ : 2.4L MULTI POINT F/INJ - 5 SP MANUAL - PREMIUM UNLEADED PETROL - 4D VAN
Car Details
Make
HYUNDAI
Model
iLOAD
Series
TQ
Year
2010
Body Type
4D VAN
Seats
3
Pricing
New Price
N/A
Private Sale
$13,860 - $15,750
Dealer Retail
$15,360 - $18,260
Dealer Trade
$11,000 - $12,600
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
MULTI POINT F/INJ
Engine Size
2.4L
Cylinders
INLINE 4
Max. Torque
228Nm @  4200rpm
Max. Power
129kW @  6000rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
66.4W/kg
Bore & Stroke
88x97mm
Compression Ratio
10.5
Valve Gear
DUAL OVERHEAD CAM
Drivetrain Specifications
Transmission
5 SP MANUAL
Drive Type
REAR WHEEL DRIVE
Final Drive Ratio
4.222
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
PREMIUM UNLEADED PETROL
Fuel Tank Capacity
75Litres
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
10.1L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
1943
Gross Vehicle Weight
4450Kg
Height
1935mm
Length
5125mm
Width
1920mm
Ground Clearance
190mm
Towing Capacity
Brake:1500  Unbrake:750
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
RACK & PINION - POWER ASSISTED
Turning Circle
11.2
Front Rim Size
6.5x16
Rear Rim Size
6.5x16
Front Tyres
215/70 R16
Rear Tyres
215/70 R16
Wheel Base
3200
Front Track
1685
Rear Track
1660
Front Brakes
DISC - VENTILATED
Rear Brakes
DISC - VENTILATED
Front Suspension
MacPherson strut, Coil Spring, Gas damper
Rear Suspension
Leaf spring, Gas damper
Standard Features
Comfort
Air Conditioning
Control & Handling
Electronic Brake Force Distribution
Driver
Power Steering
Entertainment
Radio CD with 4 Speakers
Exterior
Power Mirrors
Interior
Power Windows Front
Safety
Dual Front Airbag Package, Anti-lock Braking, Seatbelts - Pre-tensioners Front Seats
Security
Alarm System/Remote Anti Theft, Central Locking Remote Control, Engine Immobiliser
Optional Features
Engine & Transmission
Limited Slip Differential
Exterior
Barn Doors, Metallic Paint
Other
Service Interval
12 months /  15,000 kms
Warranty
60 months /  160,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Pass Side Front Floor
Country of Origin
Korea