What is it?
A more powerful version of the i10, featuring a new 1.2-litre engine. The 16-valve all-alloy motor puts out 77bhp and 87lb ft of torque – 12bhp and 14lb ft more than the base 1.1 i10.
Those might seem like minor changes, but the rise in output is enough to endow the i10 1.2 with a 2.8 second faster 0-62mph time than its smaller-engined sister, although the 12.8 seconds it takes for the benchmark is hardly turning it into a rocketship.
More importantly, the increase in engine size has had no effect on CO2 emissions or economy, which remain the same as the 1.1-litre at 119g/km and 56.5mpg.
Our test car came in range-topping ‘Style’ trim, which includes everything from heated seats and a leather steering wheel to an MP3 connection.
What’s it like?
The true benefit of picking the 1.2-litre i10 is not its performance figures, rather its dramatically improved refinement.
At idle you can barely hear the engine, and although it starts rasping under full throttle, it’s always a civilised performer.
Around town the 1.2-litre motor has a free-revving, punchy nature that allows you to make the most of the i10’s slick gearchange and well-weighted steering.
Venture onto the motorway and the benefits of the bigger engine are apparent in terms of both reduced engine noise when cruising, but also a welcome boost in performance.
It’s still far from being rapid, though, and overtaking requires anticipation – you need to plan your move before pulling out into faster moving traffic.
The 1.1-litre i10 is already one of our favourite city cars, and the new 1.2-litre option is competitively priced and makes it feel more grown-up.
Should I buy one?
Absolutely. If you’re in the market for a cheap, efficient and comfortable city car any i10 is a great choice. And as the cheapest 1.2 model costs just £200 more than the equivalent 1.1, it’s a no-brainer.