What is it?
It’s an i30 estate, the more practical, load-carrying incarnation of Hyundai’s second-generation hatch. We’ve previously sampled the i30 in 1.6-litre, 109bhp diesel-powered hatch and Tourer form, each in mid-range Active trim. Here we have the i30 Tourer in ritzy Style Nav trim and with the higher-powered version of an otherwise-the-same 1.6 diesel powering it.
What is it like?
The Hyundai is a broadly appealing package, with a useful extra kick over the 109bhp diesel. It’s worth noting, however, that while quoted power rises to 126bhp, the 192lb ft torque output, delivered between 1900 and 2750rpm, is shared by both engines. What that brings you in the Tourer is a fair turn of speed (0-62mph in 11.2sec compared with 11.8sec for the 109bhp Tourer) and a claimed 64.2mpg allied to 115g/km of CO2.
It’s a smooth enough engine and unsurprisingly feels a touch more willing than the lesser unit when pushed, but falls a little way short of Renault’s 1.6-litre dCi, our current benchmark for the class for both refinement and frugality.
We were a touch disappointed by the overall 42mpg average the i30 returned, but the extra power over the 109bhp engine would be welcome if you want to fill your Tourer with people and/or things on a regular basis.
And fill it you can, because the Hyundai’s boot, if not its rear cabin accommodation, is vast. The Tourer is barely 200mm longer than the hatch overall, but that extra length translates into a seats-up 528-litre load space, expanding to 1642 litres with them folded down.
That comfortably beats the Mégane ST (524 litres/1600 litres), Focus estate (476/1502), Astra Sports Tourer (500/1550) and Golf estate (505/1495). It’s a wide, accommodating and well thought-out load bay, too, with neat underfloor storage compartments for hiding things in.
The extension to the i30’s body has done little to tarnish the hatchback’s dynamic ability, provided you don’t load too many bags of cement into the boot. Both cars share the same 2650mm wheelbase, and the Tourer retains the hatch’s sophisticated body control and tidy, neutral handling balance.
The Tourer did, however, generate a noticeable amount of road noise, particularly on motorways. It’s not something we’ve noticed in the hatch, although those cars have run on 15-inch wheels with 65-section tyres; the Style Nav trim Tourer is furnished with 16s.
Our test car came in range-topping Style Nav trim, plus the £1000 Individual Pack, which brings with it leather seats and other stylistic and comfort-oriented accoutrements, plus the £750 Convenience Pack.
That lot pushes the car’s total asking price up to £23,950, but it brings with it a car load of equipment and kit. Look beyond and beneath it, however, and the bare bones of the i30 Tourer’s qualities remain undiminished whichever trim level and optional extras you sign up for.
Should I buy one?
There’s no reason not to. Overall the i30 Tourer is a wholly credible package with a fine blend of style, performance and equipment, plus a great big boot.
It’s easy to drive and easy on the eye, and in as-tested Style Nav trim at least comes with a well appointed interior furnished with enough buttons and toys to almost trick you into thinking the car belongs to a class above. The first time you open the boot you’ll be convinced that it does.
If those criteria are the ones that matter over and above existing established badge loyalties, then it’s hard to argue against the Hyundai.
Hyundai i30 Tourer Style Nav 1.6 CRDi Blue Drive
Price £21,395; 0-62mph 11.2sec; Top speed 120mph; Economy 64.2sec; CO2 115g/km; Kerb weight 1467kg; Engine 4 cyls, turbodiesel, 1582cc; Power 126bhp at 4000rpm; Torque 192lb ft at 1900-2750rpm; Gearbox 6-spd manual