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Old 10th June 2009, 16:56   #1
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Default Hyundai i20 - Test Driven, Booked

It is high time I put together a review on this car. I had test driven rigorously for about 80 minutes in total, using 2 different demo cars from 2 dealers. Key notes -
Engine -
11.4 Kgm @4000 rpm is even better than the iVtec of Jazz. You got 80 BHP on tap at 5200 rpm, and that though is less than jazz by 10 BHP, but you have it at much lower rpm. The engine is very refined, hard to tell it is running at idle. noice cancellation and suspension quality is fantastic.
Trust me guys, it is not sluggish, you need to slot in the right gear. And it has got knock sensor, which kind of controls the petrol flow, when the rpm goes low.. so it largely prevents knocking, I found that on 3rd gear, you can drive around the whole city. On a steep, with 2 adaults, with AC on, I could go up in 4th gear... at 60 kmph, without any issues, and I did not have enough intertia built up before that. When you rev it hard, the engine notes felt quite nice. I also tried putting 4 adults, hard accelerating, running on potholes, and hard braking, it felt awsome in terms of ride comfort, brake grip, negligible body roll etc.
The under seat air vents are boon for rear occupants. The leg room is huge, and not many will give you an all aluminium engine, crumple zone inside engine chamber (the space under the bonet is worth mentioning). The engine falls down in case of a collision, so that it does not get into passenger cabin. It is lightweight, causes less vibration, and ensures better ful efficiency.
I have been told it will return 14 to 16 kmpl in city depending on driving, traffic etc.
AC does not impact the engine performance.
Automatic climate control works fine, but you may need to adjust it time to time, the moment you change the parameters, the auto mode cuts itself off, and it is running as per your wish.
The seats are great, specially the driver seat is very comfortable, and height adjustment work fine. The steering wheel can be tilted and brought forward (telescopic), which will be a boon in long drives, the response of the steering is awsome, it cannot get any better, I do not know what they mean by 'not planted on road'... it certainly is not the case with 185/65 R14 tubeless radials.
All alloys, and the 5th wheel is also alloy, which most car maker do not give. The bumper protection is there (the rubber cladding under) to do the job, and trust me, we could not manage to make it rub against humps, with 4 people in. I am told the ground clearence is 185 mm!!! The front view will not give that impression though.
The audio quality is awsome, you turn up the volume, the dash/body etc does not rattle. The steel thickness is fantastic again.
The punch of the sound is enough, and you got USB, 3.5 mm jack both!
Steering mounted controls work fine, I specifically liked the joystick controls for volume.
Windows fold inward if you are getting into high density traffic, who else gives this very useful feature? Gone are the days when you needed to roll down windows and let the dust in to blow out hot air. Just use the roller controls under the vents, and it will be out in a few seconds, with AC still sending in cold air to you. This is also very useful in rainy seasons, when you need to refresh inside air but do not want to let outside air in directly. The engine compartment is so tidy that I was simply amazed.
The bootlamp is unheard of in this class, and it does enough justice with 295 litres, because what matter most is the shape of the luggage, and it has got depth and breadth both to gulp it all.
The magna version will be 5.5 on road in Pune, I booked the Asta, with 2 airbags, climate control, ABS with EBD, driver seat adjustment, folded key with keyless entry and immobilizer (cuts off fuel supply), which will be around 6.4 on road.
I forgot to mention, the glove box is very deep, and has an AC vent cooling as well. Overall, the internal finish is similar/better than Aveo. Bokked it today, delivery expected in 3 weeks :-(

Hope they deliver bit early.
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Old 10th June 2009, 17:03   #2
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amazing!! kills the jazz outright in terms of features
congrats
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Old 10th June 2009, 17:03   #3
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Congratulations on your booking. Do upload the pictures of car when it arrives.

Where did you test drive the car ? In city or on highway ? I think when it comes to consistent stretches of high speed cruising, this car is not comfortable as engine is not good enough.

About GC, that is required. Have you seen Lancer, it quite low slung, but GC is 180mm. I am happy that Hyundai has taken Indian operating conditions pretty seriously.

How was NVH, specially the outside noise entering cabin ? I have found this irritating a few times, so why I am asking whether these latest gen cars have better insulation or not.
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Old 10th June 2009, 17:35   #4
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nice. could you please elaborate on the suspension of I20? given the bad suspension set up of Santro, I20 and even the Verna, could you provide a comparison since this car will be for parents who are in late 50s. So looking for comfort, safety and of course the A/C.
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Old 11th June 2009, 10:15   #5
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@Kutlee - The suspension is very sturdy, tried going on humps at around 30 kmphs with 4 people in, no issues, and it did not bottom out either.

@aaggoswami - I drove it on highway around 80-90, then also in some in construction roads, so potholes and undulations were aplenty. Noise insulation is one area I am very particular about, and I can tell you it is very silent, some tyre noise will come at times depending on the road condition at high speeds, but that is there in all cars, and is within acceptable limits.

Few more notes - the dead pedal is very useful, the steering is telescopic, with enough travel to make yourself comfortable at different angles. The tilt is quite decent, and the leather quality in the wheel as well as the gear knob is top class.

Now the gear shift, very short throw & precise, and reminded me of Fiesta, has anyone noted how sleek it performs? I think people need to take this car seriously and not just go with pre notions like 1.2 is not enough blah blah, if cc was the key factor, then Safari won't have a 2.2 heart today and would stick to 3.0 dicor.

The gearbox has be synched with the engine perfectly. Now, do not expect it to run this car like a sport version (it is not meant to be that way), rather drive it like a saloon/city car, and you will be very happy.

The idle vibration in the 1st test car was not present in a showroom car and the 2nd test car, and that is not a problem. The clutch is very smooth in both cars I drove.

Few misses - the cabin light has delay effect, but it is situated at the middle, and I miss a map light setup near rear view mirror. The vanity mirror is missing!! My wife does not care about it though, nor do I.

@Jassi - Thanks buddy.
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Old 11th June 2009, 10:24   #6
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Shyamtanu,

Congratulations on your i20. This is a fantastic car & the creature comforts provided are first in this class. The mileage is really good, even before the first service, it is giving me around 11.6kmpl with full AC inside city.

I agree with you regarding the engine remarks. I never felt it underpowered for my drive (till now only city drives). Only weak point is second gear till around 1800-2000rpm, after which it just pulls ahead.
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Old 11th June 2009, 10:30   #7
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Seems like THE perfect car, doesn't it? Adequately powered, good precise gearing, great suspension, great handling, refined engine, good sound insulation, loaded with features, roomy, great GC et al. Now only if it could cook.......

What is the on-road price you are expecting to pay dude?
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Old 11th June 2009, 10:55   #8
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@ shyamtanu: Congrats! So, your 'Safari' hunt has landed into 'i20'.

Quote:
Windows fold inward if you are getting into high density traffic, who else gives this very useful feature?
Do doors also fold inwards while getting into high density traffic? LOL

Guess you had meant outside rear-view mirrors.

Last edited by sukiwa : 11th June 2009 at 11:04.
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Old 11th June 2009, 11:14   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sukiwa View Post
@ shyamtanu: Congrats! So, your 'Safari' hunt has landed into 'i20'.

Do doors also fold inwards while getting into high density traffic? LOL

Guess you had meant outside rear-view mirrors.
Yes Mate! Could not justify spending that premium in these hard times, may be some other day :-) But for now, I am very very satisfied with my selection, hope it stands up to the expectations.

I meant the ORVMs only :-P If the doors did fold, that will be Harry Potter wala bus.
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Old 11th June 2009, 11:15   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jassi View Post
amazing!! kills the jazz outright in terms of features
congrats
Ditto!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sukiwa View Post
@ shyamtanu: Congrats! So, your 'Safari' hunt has landed into 'i20'.

Do doors also fold inwards while getting into high density traffic? LOL

Guess you had meant outside rear-view mirrors.
As in Electrically folding ORVMs??


And congrats Shyamtanu!! Thats a really awesome car! Enjoy and take care
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Old 11th June 2009, 12:50   #11
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dear shamtanu,

congrats on the purchase of your i20 - a fantastic car indeed! One question. Why didn't u wait to check out Grande Punto with it being launched in a weeks time?
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Old 11th June 2009, 13:28   #12
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Congrats man! Why does it take 3 weeks to get delivered? I don't see many people buying 120 anyway! Which dealer did you buy this from?

I had read here few months ago that there were some issues with imported Korean parts in i20 and hence they were delaying those deliveries. I hope they have fixed those issues now.
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Old 11th June 2009, 13:35   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minardi View Post
dear shamtanu,

congrats on the purchase of your i20 - a fantastic car indeed! One question. Why didn't u wait to check out Grande Punto with it being launched in a weeks time?
For these reasons buddy -

1. Tata Service for FIAT not yet at that level to handle a highly refined car like Punto (entirely my opinion)
2. Hyundai has a better resale value in India, and if their track record is anything to go by, they are doing a fantastic job and still on the rising path.
3. i20 is made in India, sold in Europe, so expect the quality to be top notch. Punto is opposite or made in India & sold in India, so some detuning can be expected.
4. I was confident about the purchase and quality once I had a look and had a feel, it suited my driving style and parameters perfectly.
5. The boot is 295 litres, what matters more is the shape and depth and not just volume, it scored there.
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Old 11th June 2009, 13:43   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shyamtanu View Post
The bootlamp is unheard of in this class,
Just a note, not sure about the other cars, but all indica's have this feature.
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Old 11th June 2009, 13:52   #15
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Nice review. I am also thinking to go for i20 by trading my santro.
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