While the original i10 was the face of the scrappage scheme, and the i30 marked the brand’s first major step towards taking on the might of the Volkswagen group, the i20 has so far passed by relatively unnoticed despite strong sales since 2008 – until now that is.
Hyundai i20's assault on the supermini hierachy
With this model, Hyundai’s major assault on the supermini class really begins. Dominated by and continues to be by the Ford Fiesta and now by the new class leader - the more mature Seat Ibiza, the latest i20 now has to go toe-to-toe with not just them, but also the Skoda Fabia, the revitalised Nissan Micra and the funky Mini 3dr hatch - that is without contemplating the next gen Volkswagen Polo entering the fray at the end of 2017.
To broaden the supermini Hyundai's appeal, it is now available in three bodystyles - the conventional 5dr hatch, a three door coupé and a rugged-looking, crossover-esque shape dubbed the Active. As for engines, there are only five petrol options for buyers to muse over, with the diesels being dropped altogether from the i20 line-up. At the entry point of the range is a pair of 1.2 naturally aspirated petrol engines producing 74bhp and 83bhp respectively, followed by a 99bhp 1.4 petrol fitted curiously only with a four-speed automatic gearbox. Topping the range a pair of 1.0-litre turbocharged units, which seem to be the current vogue in small cars, producing 99bhp and 118bhp respectively. The lower powered unit 1.0 T-GDi is the only engine you can have with the rugged i20 Active.
As for standard equipment, the i20 is better equipped than its predecessor, and with five core trims to choose from for the 5dr hatchback, it should put it on par with the best in this class. Entry-level S models get 15in steel wheels, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors, hill start assist and tinted rear windows on the outside, while inside there is remote central locking, a 60/40 folding rear bench, and USB connectivity fitted as standard. Upgrade to S Air and you'll find air conditioning and a cooled glovebox added to the i20.
SE models gain 15in alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control, DAB radio, lane departure warning, rear parking sensors and a smartphone dock over the entry-level trims, while Premium Nav cars add 16in alloy wheels, climate control, auto lights and wipers, power folding door mirrors and a 7.0in touchscreen infotainment system complete with sat nav and a reversing camera.