Practical little Hyundai gets the boot, better on the road
The Hyundai Grand i10 has perennially proven a pleasant surprise, even though the last one was way underpowered. Now a fresh new look, a few interior changes, and a new model with a boot, to boot, not only bring a few much needed improvements, but also open the car up to a far wider audience.
Best of all, this new Sedan also gets a bigger, better engine to rid Grand i10 of its previous sluggard rep. This one’s 1.2-litre 4-cylinder replaces the three-pot litre lump that remains in some lesser siblings. It actually transform the four-door into an even more likeable motorcar.
FLOATING ROOFLINE FINISHES CUTE NOTCHBACK
You’ll notice the bigger, wider honeycomb grille. It loses the cheesy for a broad new poise. Boomerang shapes are all the rage in cars these days and Grand i10 does not miss out on the fad with such formed daytime running lights to round off a cleaner look. 15-inch alloys are the biggest changes on each side, while that less fussy style carries via a ‘floating roofline’ to finish off this quite cute new notchback.
Not a hell of a lot has changed inside. The sedan has its own red-trimmed black and grey theme to a rather cool little cabin. It does the job without getting too clever, has enough touchy-feely bits, but retains the vital buttons and knobs to do the basic jobs fluently. That thanks to a basic CarPlay and Auto 8-inch touchscreen infotainment and adequate USB and USB-C port, and 12V connectivity. Impressively equipped, it has a height-adjustable multifunction steering wheel to handle vital cartainment functions and even cruise control.
Add a handy a rear-view camera and manual air conditioner, power windows and power folding wing mirrors. There’s even a useful rear centre console among an impressive set of standard features, many of them rare in cars in this neck of the woods.
GRAND I10 HAS FEATURES RARE IN ITS CLASS
One of this car’s real party tricks sits behind its 60:40 split rear bench seat. The dinky lid opens up to a shockingly cavernous boot that’s reasonably easily accessible too. That makes it a far better proposition to owners and drivers who prefer that solid three-box configuration to a breezy hatchback. The boot also opens this compatible little car up to a far wider audience.
The other big advance comes under the bonnet. This 61 kW 114 Nm 1,197 cc K4 4-pot is a significant step up on the gutless 48 kW 94 Nm 998 cc 3-cylinder. Almost two and a half seconds quicker to 100 km/h, two seconds stronger between 80 and 120 and 15 km/h faster top end, Grand i10 can now run with the traffic. That’s at the coast. We’d hate to know how the smaller engine handles a hot Highveld afternoon.
The new Grand i10 Sedan packs an acceptable safety spec. It has driver and front passenger airbags pretensioner front seatbelts, and ISOFIX rear seat child seat mounts, and advanced ABS antiskid with electronic brake distribution to complement its MacPherson strut front and coupled torsion beam rear suspension.
FUN TO DRIVE GRAND I10 MAKES YOU FEEL SPECIAL
This latest Grand i10 is quite fun to drive and makes you feel special. The new engine likes to rev if you want it to. And it really is as economical as Hyundai’s claimed 5.5 litres per 100 kilometres suggests. There’s even an automatic if you want one. Grand i10 also has the wieldy road manners we’ve always appreciated it for. Never mind, it will keep on growing on you in many little ways as it delivers beyond expectation.
At the end of the day, the Grand i10 continues to offer pretty much what its rivals do, with perhaps less pretence. But it delivers far more and now even a better, more powerful engine and this vital sedan option. For less. So don’t ignore the Hyundai Grand i10 if you’re looking for a little car that has it all. – Michele Lupini
Images & Testing: Giordano Lupini
ROAD TESTED: Hyundai Grand i10 1.2 Fluid Sedan
Engine: 61 kW 114 Nm 1.2 litre petrol I4
Drive: 5-speed manual FWD
0-60km/h 4.72 sec
0-100km/h: 11.55 sec
0-120 km/h: 16.92 sec
400m: 17.9 sec @ 124 km/h
80-120km/h: 8.94 sec
Vmax: 167 km/h
CO2: 129 g/km
Range: 675 km
Warranty/Service 7y 200K km/1y 15K km