What is it?
This new three-door is the third and last body style we’re likely to see in Hyundai’s second-generation i30 range.
Besides the deletion of the rear doors, the three-door gets a more rakish profile than the five-door (thanks to its upswept beltline) and cosmetic tweaks that include revised bumpers, foglamps and grille.
Hyundai’s efforts haven’t been wasted; the additional flair makes it more interesting than the five-door.
What's it like?
Powering the i30 is a refined and flexible 126bhp 1.6-litre diesel. It delivers gutsy performance, provided you don’t labour it, and the six-speed manual gearbox is slick and precise.
The diesel is capable of returning sensible economy, too. Our test car averaged 55mpg; although some way off the claimed 68.9mpg, it’s more than sufficient. Couple our result with the i30’s 55-litre tank and the Hyundai should cover over 600 miles between fills with ease.
The ride is cosseting and there’s plenty of grip and poise in corners. The only grumble is that the steering, while accurate, is devoid of feel; as a result, the i30 is less engaging than the likes of the Ford Focus.
Inside, you’ll find a wide range of kit, including a parking camera and touchscreen sat-nav. The driving position is good and the seats are comfortable, but some of the controls could be better laid out.
Practicality isn’t overtly compromised, with room for adults in the back and a large boot
Should I buy one?
Overall, the three-door Hyundai i30 is a stylish choice that should prove easy to live with and cheap to run.
It’s an effort worthy of consideration alongside the more commonly chosen mainstream rivals, including the Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra.
Those who need to carry passengers regularly, however, may find the five-door version a more sensible choice thanks to its easily accessed rear seats.