After meeting at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show, on Saturday night we were to attend the official “Fiesta” and event “Urban Experience” of the new Hyundai i10 in Elche (Spain), at Red Room Disco, where we could see it very closely and had the chance to make a quick spin.
The 2014 i10 is available with a choice between two engines combinated with a five speed manual gearbox. The base engine is a 1.0-liter with three-cylinder unit that’s offered 66 horsepower at 5,500 rpm.
A larger 1.25-liter four cylinder is also available, which produces 87 horsepower at 6,000 rpm. Those manual transmissions and tiny engines help the Picanto achieve excellent fuel economy. The 1.25-liter model earns nearly 59 mpg (4,9 l/100km) in mixed driving while the 1.0-liter Kappa nets 60 mpg (4,7 L/100km).
It offers buyers numerous ‘big car’ comfort and convenient features, many of them unusual on a model in this segment. At the heart of the cabin’s appeal is its simplicity.
While the overall design philosophy is consistent with the rest of the Hyundai range, the i10 has several styling cues which are very much its own.
The major controls are arranged in an attractive and easy-to-use layout which emphasises the space of the interior. A thick-rimmed three-spoke steering wheel and Hyundai signature ‘two cylinder’ instrument cluster provide clear and precise graphics.
The new i10 will be available with automatically controlled air conditioning, plus electric and heated folding door mirrors with integrated side repeaters. Steering wheel-mounted audio controls allow drivers to keep their hands on the steering wheel at all times.
Other new features available include Autolightcontrol, LED Daytime running lights, LED high mounted stop lamp and rear LED combi-lamp, AUX, iPod and USB connections with MP3 compatibility for the radio/CD player, Cruise Control with Speed Limiter, Rear Parking Sensors, Heated Steering Wheel, Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), Bluetooth hands-free with voice recognition and heated front seats.
For Spain, the Hyundai i10 offered with three versions, Essence (only with 1.0 three-cylinder), Tecno and Style (only available with 1.2 four-cylinder). Soon we will have the opportunity to test drive!
Hyundai has ensured the interior is well insulated from engine noise, so the car is quiet and relaxing to drive around the city. It gets a little noisier at motorway speeds as the lack of a sixth gear means the engine has to work quite hard, but it’s not overly intrusive.
Despite the small proportions, the i10 is surprisingly spacious, too. Two adults will fit in the back seats, although legroom is likely to be a little tight – but a family of two adults and two kids will have no trouble fitting comfortably in the i10.
We were impressed. Refined and roomy, comfortable and quiet, this car is a worthy successor to its predecessor. The gearbox is smooth and seamless, the steering is light and accurate and the overall impression is of big-car refinement in a much smaller product.
Visibility is good and on the whole it feels very European, which is hardly surprising as it was designed in Germany and is being manufactured in Turkey. Perhaps it’s a tad conventional in its looks and it certainly lacks the quirkiness of others in the busy A segment, but on the other hand, you really do get a lot of bang for your buck in a small car that doesn’t feel like a compromise.