A nice car, with great features, very economical , low maintenance and very reliable. A car that will not let you down and get you from a to b.Hyundai’s i40 is a car that seriously warrants inclusion on the mid-sized passenger car buyer’s shopping list, but is so often overlooked. There’s nothing wrong with the car, but it always seems to be the bridesmaid to rivals like the Mazda 6.
For the full year 2014, the i40 sold fewer than 3000 units, which is a lacklustre performance from any Hyundai model, not least of all one that had an entire segment to itself in Hyundai showrooms – without an i45 or Sonata ripping off sales. The i40 was outsold by Ford’s run-out Mondeo, the Mazda6 – just recently upgraded – and the rampaging Toyota Camry (is VFACTS the only yardstick by which ‘rampaging’ is used to describe the Camry?).
Let’s be clear about this though, the i40 is a good car. A bit over two years ago I spent a few weeks in one on a long-term test. That car, a diesel sedan trimmed to flagship Premium level, impressed with its sensible packaging and good general driveability, but it wasn’t without flaw.
Hyundai has set about fixing some of those issues, starting with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT) for the 1.7-litre turbo-diesel, which boasts four extra kilowatts and 20 more Newton-metres. In addition, the i40 – like other models in the Hyundai range – has scored revised suspension and steering, with the changes orchestrated by an Australian-based engineering team.
The new DCT is one of the more refined of its type and a lot of drivers won’t even discern it’s not a conventional epicyclic auto. It’s more responsive and delivers better efficiency coupled to the diesel.