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Hyundai i30

THE I'S HAVE IT (some text hidden)

Introductionword count: 10

June Neary is surprised by Hyundai's impressive i30 family hatchback

Will It Suit Me?word count: 43

Hyundai's third generation 130 is the most complete family hatchback the Asian market has yet produced - period. Based on Kia's Ceed but offering a more polished design for just a little more, it's a surprisingly impressive effort, especially in this improved form.

Practicalitiesword count: 247

I always found the styling of the original version of this model a little bland - but this MK3 version's a lot more interesting to look at. There's a choice of three i30 body styles, a five-door hatch, a 'Tourer' estate and a sleeker five-door 'Fastback' model. Either way, the front is characterised by a wider-looking, more modern stance. The wider grille features an accentuated 3D pattern that emphasises what Hyundai hopes is a more agile look. To further enhance this, restyled, slimmer headlamps can feature optional multifaceted reflector MFR LED technology and there are smarter V-shaped signature LED daytime running lights. Overall, it's still not what you would call an avant garde design, but the quality of the materials and the construction is convincing. As for the cabin, well, it's much smarter and classier. There's a new 7-inch digital instrument cluster screen and a fresh 10.25-inch navigation touchscreen for top models. This floating screen integrates all navigation, media and connectivity features. For enhanced comfort, the front seats can be heated or cooled in three stages. When customers choose power seats, these can be adjusted in 10-ways including lumbar support. There's an optional panoramic glass roof to fit with the current segment trend. Out back, there's 395-litres of space on offer in the hatch version. If you need more, talk to your dealer about the Tourer estate version. Either way, there's plenty of room for push chairs, child seats and all the other paraphernalia of family life.

Behind the Wheelword count: 283

The i30 has been designed specifically for the European market and benchmarked against class leaders like the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus. Like those two cars but unlike many of the other established names in the sector, the i30 has fully-independent suspension all round or at least a version of it. Which is why it handles a great deal more competently than you might be expecting it to. Lewis Hamilton-wannabees will still opt for the Focus - and rightly so - but for the majority of buyers for the majority of the time, the 130 is everything you need and more. As for the engines on offer, well, he key news is that the volume 1.0-litre petrol unit is now available with 48-volt Mild Hybrid technology for better fuel efficiency and for the first time with a 6-speed iMT Intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT). iMT decouples the engine from the transmission after the driver releases the accelerator. This allows the car to enter into two possible levels of coasting depending on the conditions. With the first level, the engine is idling. With the second level, the engine is additionally temporarily turned off to save even more fuel. For those who prefer to drive automatic, the 48-volt Mild Hybrid option is also available with a 7-speed dual clutch transmission. The 136PS version of the 1.6-litre diesel also gets the 48-volt mild hybrid set-up - and the same two-way transmission choice. I was already familiar with the 1.0 T-GDI petrol powerplant from the i20 - here it develops 170Nm of torque. Newer to me though, is the petrol 1.5 T-GDI unit that sits above it. This engine puts out 160PS and also has mild hybrid tech.

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Category: Compact Family Cars

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