Glide with Fluid Motion: Hyundai Grand i10 revealed

2018-03-07 06:01

SA buyers will miss the smaller version of i10; Hyundai’s Atos/Atoz replacement that’s officially no longer available here although a few might still be lurking around dealerships.

It was phased out in 2013 from all markets except India, but Hyundai SA continued importing them for local fans.

Keeping the Grand range as sole option was an easy decision to make. It is noticeably larger, is more comfortable and has a bigger boot. It was also a good opportunity to drop the single airbag models without ABS that had led to earlier criticism of safety standards. Hyundai managed this with one marginal price increase — that of the 1.25 litre Fluid automatic. All others remain the same or slightly lower.

There are six models. Three use the 1.0 litre Kappa ll triple that puts out slightly less power and torque than the old 1.1-litre four, but produces its maximum pulling strength 1000 rpm lower down the scale, making it more relaxing to drive. The others are fitted with the 1.25 litre Kappa four-cylinder that has been around for a while.

The new range consists of 998cc Motion versions in manual and automatic, a Fluid model with five-speed manual, 1248cc manual or automatic Fluid cars and a new range-topping Glide that’s manual only.

Briefly, Motion specification offers black fabric upholstery and black trim; steel wheels; four-speaker radio and CD player with USB, auxiliary and Bluetooth; audio controls on the steering wheel; front fog lamps; filtered manual air conditioning; manual external mirrors; powered front windows; ABS brakes with EBD; a trip computer and the pair of airbags mentioned earlier. McPherson strut front suspension features revised geometry and new tie rod design to enhance steering feedback and precision while improving handling characteristics.

The coupled torsion beam rear axle boasts improvements to trailing arm geometry and rear springs, for a more stable and comfortable ride. Brakes are disc and drum on all models. Eight body colours include Star Dust, Phantom Black, Polar White, Flame Orange, Fiery Red, Wine Red, Marina Blue and Sleek Silver.

Fluid specification upgrades the music centre to a full infotainment system with RDS radio and MP3; adds remote central locking with keyless entry; provides one-touch indicators and 14” alloy wheels; powers the rear windows and exterior mirrors (warmed and with indicator repeaters) and adds auto-down to the driver’s door window. Fluid and Glide models with infotainment systems are geared for satellite navigation. A micro-SD card containing the maps is obtainable at R2 500.

The top-of-range 1.25 Glide manual boasts rear parking assistance and upholstery in a combination of black leather and red cloth, with added red trim on doors and dash. We were let loose in matching examples of this model on a short familiarisation drive through North Coast cane country.

In these days of turbo-everything, we sometimes expect too much of “organic” cars with small engines breathing naturally. Within these parameters, the experience was impressive.

The Hyundai Grand i10 with 1.25-litre motor is flexible, smooth and willing, spinning easily to 6000 rpm before activating the limiter. The benchmark 120 km/h comes up at 3600 in top (fifth) gear. That’s 400 rpm before its torque peak, leaving some roll-on power in reserve for emergencies.

Physically, the car felt stable, smooth and solid and it handled well. Despite hard plastic surfaces that are becoming more the rule than the exception, fit and finish is up to expected Korean standards. Try one. The decision will be easy. — Gordon Hall.


INFORMATION GATHERED AT
A MANUFACTURER-SPONSORED PRESS EVENT

The numbers

Prices range from R149 900 to R206 900

Specs 1.0 engine: 998 cc, DOHC 12-valve, CVVT, inline three

Power: 48 kW at 5500 rpm

Torque: 94 Nm at 3500 rpm

Claimed average fuel consumption, l/100 km: 5.4 manual, 5.9 automatic

Specs 1.25 engine: 1248 cc, DOHC 16-valve VTVT inline four

Power: 64 kW at 6000 rpm

Torque: 120 Nm at 4000 rpm

Claimed average fuel consumption, l/100 km: 5.9 manual, 6.9 automatic

Tank: 43 litres

Luggage: 256 – 1202 litres

Warranty: 5 years / 150 000 km with roadside assistance

Additional Powertrain warranty: 2 years / 50 000 km

Included service plan on Fluid and Glide: 2 years / 30 000 km

Optional on 1.0 Motion: R4785 (auto), R4933 (man)

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