Strong new diesels improve Getz’s appeal. Priced less aggressively than Kia Rio cousin, but it’s hardly pricey.
18 October 2005

The Hyundai Getz’s tidy looks have never offended us quite as much as its asthmatic engine line-up. Nevertheless both have been updated in the first revision since its arrival in 2002.The entry-level 1.1 remains, but the 1.3 and 1.6 are kicked into touch, replaced by a new four-cylinder 1.4. With 95bhp it’s not hugely zesty, but there’s enough poke to keep up with traffic in most situations.More impressive are the new diesels: a 1.5-litre four-cylinder available in either low-pressure 87bhp tune or tweaked up to 108bhp (but only in the three-door). Both engines are vocal from idle, but quieten on the move and rev cleanly. The difference between the two is hard to tell, meaning for most people the 87bhp will do just fine. And both engines now meet Euro 4 emissions regulations.The suspension has been left untouched, meaning it’s ideal around town but a little soft and underdamped for cross-country work.Now to the looks. Outside there’s a new bonnet, bumper and lights to give the Getz a more modern face, while inside there are subtle changes to the instrument cluster and central console, which on the range-topping 108bhp diesel gets a metallic finish.Examine some of the cabin materials and it’s evident the Getz remains a car built to a budget, but it feels solid enough. The cabin offers plenty of storage and enough space for four adults over short-to-medium journeys.The Getz is £500-£1000 more than its Kia Rio sister, reflecting Hyundai-Kia Automotive’s desire to distance the two brands. But with generous equipment, better engines and a smarter look we still reckon it’s good value.Jamie Corstorphine

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