With regard to the i30’s turbocharged petrol engine, Hyundai’s main objective is obviously twofold: more peak torque of the low-down, accessible kind, along with a commensurate improvement in the four-pot’s efficiency. In both respects, the unit represents a middling achievement.
Its basic manners, certainly of the audible sort, are generally creditable. Via a thickset gearchange and clutch pedal, normal progress is dispatched with a dependable, innocuous air. The engine’s function is palpable in the cabin but muffled into the kind of nondescript hum that makes it difficult to immediately identify whether it runs on petrol or diesel.
The performance being meted out is barely any more effective a guide: the 178lb ft of torque, available from 1500rpm, is unequivocally the unit’s primary source of propulsion, with all the hard work done before 4000rpm.
Any subsequent industry feels like an afterthought in the modern oil-burner mould, the motor feeling sufficiently stifled by the appearance of peak power at 6000rpm that one wonders if Hyundai expects its buyers to remain almost permanent strangers to the power output they’ve paid for.