Review

Hyundai i10 hatchback

Price  £8,495 - £11,350

Hyundai i10 hatchback

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Very comfortable
  • Spacious interior
  • Fun to drive
Cons
  • Interior quality poor in places
  • No diesel option
  • Overly-sharp brakes

At a glance

The greenest
SE Blue Drive 1.0 Manual (4 seat) 5dr £9,795
The cheapest
S 1.0 Manual 66PS 5dr £8,495
The fastest
Premium 1.2 Manual 87PS 5dr £10,695
Top of the range
Premium 1.2 Automatic 87PS 5dr £11,350

"The new Hyundai i10 has what it takes to be the best city car on the market, thanks to stylish looks, a spacious interior and low running costs."

The old Hyundai i10 was a huge success story thanks to its low price, practical interior and the fact it was surprisingly fun to drive. The new version is even better - in fact it's such an improvement that it won Carbuyer Car of the Year for 2014, as well as Best City Car.

The latest i10 has swapped its predecessor's cheap and cheerful looks for a far more stylish design and a more attractive interior. But Hyundai hasn’t just made its city car better looking, it's improved every aspect of the i10. It's longer and wider than the old model, which means it offers even more space. And it's still great fun to drive. Two petrol engines are available – a 65bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine or an 86bhp 1.2-litre four-cylinder engine. The smaller engine would be our pick, because it offers a better mpg figure but still has a decent amount of power. Equipment levels are good, too, with all models getting central locking, a USB connection and ISOFIX mountings for a child seat. 

MPG, running costs & CO2

4.9 / 5

Efficient engine line-up means it’s cheap to run and tax

Cheap running costs are a hallmark of the city car sector, and the i10 is no exception. The standard 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine returns 60.1mpg and emits 108g/km of CO2. This improves to 61.4mpg and 106g/km if you pick the model equipped with stop-start – a technology that automatically switches the engine off when the cars comes to a stop to conserve fuel, and restarts it when you press the accelerator pedal.

Go for the four-speed automatic gearbox and economy falls to 47.1 mpg while emissions increase to 137g/km.

The ultra efficient 1.0-litre BlueDrive model is the most efficient in the range and is available as a manual and in SE trim only. It will do 65.7mpg with emissions of 98g/km CO2. The more powerful four-cylinder 1.2-litre engine will do 57.6mpg with CO2 emissions of 114g/km with the manual gearbox and 45.6mpg and 142g/km with the automatic. 

Interior & comfort

3.7 / 5

Comfortable, quiet and relaxing around town

The i10 has been designed to be a comfortable car and it will glide softly over any potholes or bumps in the road at low speeds. Even at higher speeds, it copes with bumps as well as a much larger car.

Hyundai has ensured the interior is well insulated from engine noise, so the car is quiet and relaxing to drive about town. 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.

Practicality & boot space

3.9 / 5

Spacious interior, class-leading boot and five doors make it a winner

The i10 is very cleverly packaged and as a result offers a fantastic level of cabin and boot space, despite being so small. SE and Premium specification models get a height-adjustable driver's seat, but entry-level S models have to make do without.

While many city car rivals come in a choice of three or five door body styles, the i10 is only available in the more practical five-door form. The doors open wide, too, making getting in and out easy, plus they each feature a bottle holder. There are also cupholders in the centre console, and a storage area and a USB socket in the dash, plus there's a decent sized glovebox.

The boot is a class-leading 252-litres, beating the likes of the Skoda Citigo and Volkswagen up!. The rear seats can be folded flat to expand boot space to 1,046 litres, or part folded in a 60:40 split.

Reliability & safety

4.5 / 5

Tried and tested equipment and a lengthy warranty mean the i10 is solid

Both the engines in the new i10 are carried over from the old model – although they have been improved for better performance and economy – so they should prove to be reliable. And the i10, like all Hyundais, is covered by a five-year unlimited mileage warranty, which also includes five years of breakdown cover, so you’re well protected even if something does go wrong.

All models in the i10 line-up feature six airbags, tyre pressure monitoring systems and stability control as standard. The new i10 hasn’t yet been crash tested by Euro NCAP but we would expect it to get a five star safety rating. 

Engines, drive & performance

4.0 / 5

Surprisingly fun to drive, with capable engines and a smooth gearbox

City cars aren’t generally known for being great to drive, but the i10 has always been one of the best in class in this department. And the new model keeps to this tradition – it's great fun to take for a spin. The smaller 1.0-litre engine is a little on the slow side, but it's still a decent performer and shouldn’t struggle to keep up with other cars providing you anticipate traffic or inclines ahead. This is less of an issue with the 1.2-litre engine, which has more power.

All models have a great five-speed grearbox, offering smooth gear changes, and excellent brakes that ensure the car stops promptly and safely. The steering is light, which makes maneuvering around town easy.

Price, value for money & options

5.0 / 5

Competitively priced with a generous equipment list

Hyundai may have improved the looks, size and quality of the i10, but it's still great value for money. The cheap starting price, low running costs and fun driving experience all helped the i10 win the Carbuyer Car of the Year award in 2014.

Prices start from £8,345 for the entry-level S specification car, which is the same starting price as the old model. Standard equipment is generous and includes central locking, electric front windows, USB input, daytime running lights and six airbags. Mid-spec SE models start from £9,292 and also get remote central locking, electric rear windows, electric heated door mirrors and body coloured door handles and mirrors. While range-topping Premium cars cost from £10,495 and get Bluetooth connectivity with voice recognition and steering wheel-mounted controls.

All models come with a five year warranty and five years of breakdown cover.

What the others say

4.7 / 5
based on 3 reviews
  • 5.0 / 5

    "The third generation Hyundai i10 has what it takes to beat the best in class, with a refined, mature and value-packed package."

  • 5.0 / 5

    "Hyundai has pushed the boat out to ensure that this model is an improvement in every area. It's larger, more stylish, better equipped and has a more 'premium' feel."

  • 4.0 / 5

    "There's been a wholesale change in philosophy for the new Hyundai i10 with the company claiming the new city car is one people will choose to buy rather than feel they have to. In a class that includes the Volkswagen up! and its siblings, that's a bold claim."

Last updated 
18 Feb 2014

Disqus - noscript

any idea when we can expect a video review?

by the way: your text in the i10 section of "best city cars" is about the iQ/Aygo, not about the i10

Edit articles much ? Several spelling mistakes.

As a con in the review, I'm not sure "No diesel option" is really valid because I have never seen a 1.0 or 1.2 litre diesel, perhaps the reviewer has seen many???

Sister company Kia has a 1.1 litre diesel in the Rio, and the Fiat Panda has a 1.3, so it's a perfectly valid point.

Kia do a 1.1 diesel for Europe so there is obviously
not a big demand for it here, how wrong are they!!!:-)
Used in the Rio here, a good unit, well economical.
Perhaps it will come here later!!!!!

The 1.1 Diesel in the Rio offers little more than 45mpg in urban driving as my Neighbour was showing me the Rio before I decided to buy the New Gen i10. Even with less than 300 miles on the clock my I10 SE 5dr is averaging 48.7mpg to date. On a long run i am sure the 1.1 Diesel unit will pay dividends but for the City where most of my driving is done, I feel the i10 SE 1.0i is the perfect engine to use. I find it quiet, torquey, refined and smooth. Cant stress how good this little Car feels, coming from a VW Polo I have no regrets in my choice.

Can you make a review for the Hyundai Grand i10 I am torn between buying this or either tucson. Thank you.

Hi Ray, we don't get the Hyundai Grand i10 in the UK so it won't be a car we'll be reviewing in the near future. If Hyundai does decide to sell it here, we'll be sure to review it!

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