Hyundai i30 (2007 - 2012)
NCAP Rating 5 / 5
Once a maker of dull, value-laden machines, Hyundai's range now rightfully competes against the established Japanese and European manufacturers. The i30 was one of the first cars to help reinvigorate the firm, and while it's not the most exciting small family hatchback money can buy, it's a sensible, value-laden proposition.
Debuting in 2007, the Hyundai i30 is a credible alternative to cars like Toyota's Auris, Ford's Focus and the Volkswagen Golf. Arriving with a range of engines encompassing everything from a 1.4-litre petrol unit to a 2.0-litre CRDi turbodiesel mated to either manual or automatic transmissions, the i30 offered plenty of choice, while long standard equipment lists and generous warranty cover sweetened the buying proposition.
Smart, inoffensive styling inside and out helped its cause, the i30 appealing to a core market of buyers who want useful family transport at a sensible price. All trim levels include a comprehensive list of safety equipment. Trim levels available in the classifieds include Comfort, Style and Premium. That entry-level Comfort model comes with air conditioning, electric windows and alloy wheels as standard so all cars are well specified.
The 1.4-litre petrol engine is adequate and the 1.6-litre petrol doesn't add a great deal of performance, so the 1.6-litre turbodiesel is the best all-rounder. It's offered with either a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic. The bulk of i30 s sold were hatchbacks, but it was also offered in estate guise badged CW - for Cross Wagon.
An i30 1.6 CRDi with a manual transmission in Comfort specification is about as sensible a small family car as you could ask for. It's also the most economical and tax-friendly - assuming it's post 2008.
Engine: 1,5820cc four-cylinder turbodiesel
Maximum speed: 188km/h
0-100km/h: 11.6 seconds
Fuel consumption: 4.7 litres/100km
Euro NCAP: *****
- Dependable, comfortable
- Good economy and emissions
- Plentiful standard equipment on all versions
- Dull to drive
- Dull to look at
- Boot isn't as big as some rivals'
It's a family hatchback that ticks every box you'll need except the one titled 'excitement'. That's fine for many, and the huge standard specification will excite plenty of people, but if you enjoy your cars there are more fun choices in the classifieds. A head over heart car if ever there was one.