What is it?
This is the Hyundai i20 1.2 Comfort, part of Hyundai’s continuing assault on the small car sector.
The Hyundai i20 is the Korean firm’s replacement for the Getz supermini and a new rival for the latest Ford Fiesta. This is our first opportunity to sample it on UK roads.
What’s it like?
As we’ve come to expect, buying a Hyundai offers a saving over its competitors, but is it enough? The Hyundai i20 is competing in one of the toughest market segments, and while the new Fiesta is our current favourite of its rivals, there are many other excellent alternatives, including the Vauxhall Corsa, Skoda Fabia and Mazda 2.
Next to these, the Hyundai i20 1.2 Comfort drives well enough, with a keenness to change direction, a decent amount of throttle adjustability and accurate (if over-light) steering. The engine is both reasonably peppy and emits just 124g/km of CO2, making it cleaner than its immediate rivals.
It could do with a taller fifth gear for motorways, but while the looks might be forgettable, the i20’s packaging is efficient, particularly for rear-seat passengers.
So the i20 is a perfectly good car, then, and vastly superior to the one it replaces, but it fails to deliver much in the way of flair and desirability. The interior in particular is pretty drab and unappealing.
Should I buy one?
For many, the Hyundai i20 1.2 Comfort will make a decent case for itself. And you can point to Hyundai’s five-year warranty, as well as the price advantage, and argue that desirability is something you can forgo. If that’s the case then the i20 is a decent car that will most likely serve you well.
However, if you can stretch to the Fiesta and live with steel wheels, you’ll be getting not only a technically superior but also a more satisfying car. And for similar money, the Seat Ibiza gets close to the i20 on toys and is styled with more panache.