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Hyundai Grand i10 Test Drive Review

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Hyundai Grand i10 Review

Car Tested: 2013 Hyundai Grand i10 Asta (O)

Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 6.52 lakhs (P), Rs. 7.76 lakhs (D)

The Grand i10 is complete package of space, features, performance and fuel efficiency at a very competitive price.

Hatchbacks are the ones which drive volumes and hence profitability in the Asian automobile industry. Over 70 percent sales come from this body type. Asian consumers have evolved over time and now look not only at value for money prospects but also those cars which are feature rich and add to the style quotient. The above factors considered, Hyundai is one such company which gives the consumers exactly that. Be it the Eon or the i20 the combination of style and features nails it for most customers. The hatchback segment comprises of entry level and compact hatchbacks. Entry level hatchbacks consist of the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Alto, Hyundai Eon, etc. In the compact hatchback segment, it is further divided into compact low, compact mid and compact high. Hyundai has its presence in both the compact low and compact high with the i10 and the i20. It now fills in the space between these with the Grand i10.

The Grand i10 shares nothing with the regular i10. The only thing common between the two is the name and there is a reason for that. The Hyundai Grand i10 is the new generation i10 globally and has been made on a brand new platform. While it replaces the old i10 in other countries, in Asia its fits between the i10 and i20, while the regular i10 will continue to sell alongside. Since it’s the new generation i10, Hyundai had to include the i10 in its name as a part of their global policy, thereby the name Grand i10.

Hyundai launched the Grand i10 in Asia before the European model (IA) breaks cover at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show later this week. We drove the camouflaged car last month in Hyderabad and our first impressions were very positive. This time we drive the Grand i10 in the pink city of Jaipur to review and find out how this new Hyundai will redefine the segment.

Motor Quest: The Grand i10 is the successor of the i10 (launched in 2007), which is the successor of the Santro (launched in 1997). However in Asia, all three Hyundai models co-exist.

Head over to the next page to read about the Hyundai Grand i10’s exteriors.

Exteriors – The Grand i10 has been customised for the Asian market. The Asian version is longer by 100 mm as compared to the European IA. The wheelbase itself is longer by 40 mm. The upward sloping rear window in the IA has been redesigned to give Asian consumers an airy feel at the rear and not give a claustrophobic feeling to rear passengers.

Hyundai’s latest fluidic design philosophy has taken the market by storm and the Grand i10 follows the same design language, however in a very subtle manner. The Grand i10 does not have those sharp creases seen on the other Hyundai cars and the design is more sublime. The design has been optimised in the wind tunnel and has very low coefficient of drag (0.35). The front of the Hyundai Grand i10 houses the signature hexagonal air dam with large swept back head lamps which lend it a sporty character. The single slat front grille connects the front headlamps in a very elegant fashion. Large fog lamps with chrome surrounds accentuate the styling quotient.

The side profile flaunts the two tone diamond cut alloy wheels, which look rather classy. The side indicator is integrated with the sculpted external rear view mirror. The chrome door handles feel good to hold and also house the button to lock/unlock the car via the smart key. Roof rails make a sporty statement too. The top end model also sports a black cladding and along with the integrated rear spoiler, adds on to its sporty character.

The rear profile is highlighted with a beautiful and detailed tail lamp assembly which intrudes nicely into the boot lid. Large reflector and character lines make the rear bumper look good. Hyundai has equipped the Grand i10 with an electromagnetic boot release which can be activated by the button sitting under the Hyundai logo. The ‘Grand i10’ badge sits on the upper left side of the boot lid and parking sensors on the bumpers are a boon while parking in tight spots.

Head over to the next page to read about the Hyundai Grand i10’s interiors.

Interiors – The interiors appear to be of a car which is much more expensive. The interior styling has been tastefully done keeping in mind that ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’. The dual tone black and beige interiors on the Hyundai Grand i10 offer a high quality fit and finish and the dashboard looks simple yet elegant. The AC vents get chrome surrounds and all the controls are ergonomically placed. There are enough storage areas in the cabin and each door has bottle holders and there are cup holders between the front seats around the handbrake. The glove box is reasonably sized and also has cooling function (derived from the AC) to keep your drinks chilled for a longer time. Outside rear view mirrors get electrically folding and adjustment feature.

The audio system offers above average sound quality (as compared to the segment) and offers input options such as USB/AUX/CD and Bluetooth streaming. Even when streaming audio from the Bluetooth, you can change tracks through the buttons on the steering wheel. As a segment first, Hyundai has also offered a 1 GB internal memory, where you can copy your favourite songs from your pen drive and phone to play them later. Moreover, the audio controls on the steering wheel only add to the convenience factor. The Grand i10 also offers Bluetooth telephony and it’s very easy to pair your phone to the car. The system allows a maximum five phones to be paired at a time, after which you can delete a phone if you want to pair a new one. Phone connect and disconnect buttons are also placed on the steering wheel.

The multifunctional steering wheel feels good to hold and has numerous buttons to control the audio system, phone and also read data on the instrument cluster. The instrument cluster offers large dials which are easy to read. There are two trip meters but surprisingly the display does not show the range and mileage. There is a gear shift indicator which shows you whether to upshift or downshift, in order to get better fuel efficiency. Push button start and smart key are also on the list of features.

The air-conditioner works well and cools the cabin quickly. We were mighty impressed with the cooling and the Grand i10 kept us comfortable while the hot Rajasthan sun blazed away to glory. As another segment first, Hyundai has equipped the Grand i10 with a rear AC vent. This not only helps achieve the desired cabin temperature faster but also keeps the rear passengers comfortable. Remember, we stay in a tropical country and these days sun control films are banned and the rear AC vent alone will attract many to this car. There is no automatic climate control offered though. The Grand i10 get two charging points, one at the front and one behind (just under the rear AC vent).

The front seats are comfortable and supportive. The integrated headrest has been ergonomically done and supports your neck well. There is enough head room, knee room and shoulder room but the under thigh support is lacking for tall passengers. The two tone black and beige seat fabric looks neat. Get to the rear seat and you will be surprised by the amount of space on offer. Even with the front seats adjusted to a six footer’s seating postion, there is abundant space at the rear. Headroom was just about enough for a 6-feet 2-inch passenger but back support and knee room was very impressive. Under thigh support was again lacking at the rear too. The rear window size has been altered for Asia and it definitely helps the cabin feel airy.

Boot space of the Hyundai Grand i10 measures 256-litres and is sufficient for a car of this size. Just as a unit of measurement, it is 50-litres more than the Maruti Suzuki Swift. The spare tyre is a full sized tyre but Hyundai has mounted it on a steel rim rather than offering a fifth alloy wheel.

Head over to the next page to read about the Hyundai Grand i10’s performance.

Performance – Hyundai has equipped the Grand i10 with an option of two powertrains. The standard petrol powered 1.2-litre Kappa engine and an all new 1.1-litre second generation U2 CRDi diesel engine. The 1.2-litre petrol powered Kappa engine produces 83 PS of power and 114 NM torque. Equipped with dual VTVT (Variable Valve Timing) which optimises in opening and closing of the value thereby improving both performance and fuel efficiency. The petrol powered Hyundai Grand i10 delivers an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 18.9 km/l/. Currently the petrol engine is mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox but Hyundai has already announced it will launch a 4-speed Automatic at a later stage. This petrol engine has a strong mid-range but tends to lose breath at the higher end of the rev band. It offers good linear performance and pulls cleanly from low revs.

The highlight of the Grand i10 is the new 3-cylinder 1.1-litre U2 CRDi engine which is an absolute gem for city driving. Producing 71 PS of power and 160 NM of torque, this oil burner does not feel like a 3-cylinder motor at all. Usually 3-pot diesels are noisy and have inherent vibrations associated with it. Hyundai has incorporated a balancer shaft to reduce the vibrations and sound deadening material has been used to improve NVH levels. In fact, the engine is barely audible inside the cabin of the Grand i10 till around 3000 RPM.

Power delivery is linear and the engine pulls effortlessly between 1500 – 3000 RPM. There is a minor hint of turbolag below 1500 RPM. The Grand i10 sprints to 120 km/hr easily after which it feels strained till 140 km/hr and tops out close to 150 km/hr provided you don’t run out of road. Mated to this engine is a 5-speed manual transmission with short and slick throws. The cogs work into each other so effortlessly that you actually enjoy the shifts. The ratios on this gearbox are made to suit both city and highway driving. The U2 CRDi engine in the Grand i10 operates at a very high injection pressure of 1800 bar and this generates low end torque which is available in a wide torque band from 1500-2750 RPM. There is enough torque available at low speeds to ensure you don’t need to work the gearbox too much. Even on the highway, the Grand i10 will comfortably do 80 to 120 km/hr in fifth gear. However, you may need to downshift for high speed overtaking manoeuvres. This 1.1-litre engine offers a strong low and mid-range and revs to around 4500 RPM, where it feels a bit strained. The first gear tops out at 40 km/hr, second a little above 70 km/hr and the third crosses 100 km/hr.

The Grand i10 delivers 24 km/l as per the ARAI certified figures. To improve the fuel efficiency, the turbine housing has been integrated with the exhaust manifold and this engine already meets Euro V standards. Though we didn’t get a chance to test its real world mileage we reckon it should return around 16 – 18 km/l in the real world.

Head over to the next page to read about the Hyundai Grand i10’s dynamics and our verdict on the car.

Driving Dynamics – The Grand i10 is based on an all new platform and has been tested extensively globally. This certainly reflects in the way it rides and handles. The suspension is not very soft as you see in conventional Hyundai’s but is well set up for Asian conditions. The ride is extremely compliant on most surfaces. At low speeds, the suspension keenly absorbs most of the irregularities on the tarmac. Even at high speed, only the large potholes seep through to the cabin. The suspension setup makes the Hyundai Grand i10 feel more stable too. There is no bouncy feeling at high speeds and the Grand i10 feels extremely stable at triple digit speeds and feels more surefooted around corners too.

Hyundai’s have never scorched the charts in the handling department but the Grand i10 comes across as an exception. Hyundai has set up the chasis so beautifully that it feels far more relaxed around corners and even sudden changes in direction are taken as welcome. At low speeds, the steering is light and navigating through congested city traffic is a simple task. The steering feels reasonably connected at high speeds offering enough feedback to inspire confidence to push around at triple digits speeds. There is absolutely minimal bodyroll in this car and it feels pretty comfortable cruising around at three digit speeds.

The Grand i10 moves on 14-inch 165/65 spec tyres which offer reasonable grip. The company offers a mix of Goodyear, MRF and JK tyres based on the lot of manufacture. Stomp on the brakes at 100 km/hr and it stops in a straight line without much drama. However, the tyres do end up screeching. This is pretty impressive considering the i20 has a tendency to twitch under heavy braking. ABS works well to keep you from harms way and dual front airbags add to the passive safety factor.

Verdict – The Hyundai Grand i10 comes across as a terrific package. Compact on the outside, it has more interior space than the segment leader Maruti Suzuki Swift. Built quality and interiors are probably the best in the segment. The new U2 CRDi diesel engine not only packs in good performance but is also very fuel efficient. With segment first features like the rear AC vents and memory storage for the audio system, the Grand i10 is an all out quality product at a very competitive price. Hyundai is the master of the value for money game and the Grand i10 is set to be another hit from the Korean company.

The Grand i10 delivers on every front. Great interior space, tons of features and a potent diesel engine which is extremely fuel efficient. Coupled with Hyundai’s large after sales network, the Grand i10 certainly has the goods to redefine the segment.

What’s Cool

* Space
* Built quality
* Features
* Mileage

What’s Not So Cool

* No dead pedal
* ABS and airbags are optional

Alternatives: Maruti Suzuki Ritz, Ford Figo, Honda Brio

2013 Hyundai Grand i10 Specifications

* Engine: 1197cc, 16V, Kappa, VTT (P); 1120cc, 12V, U2 CRDI (D)
* Power: 83 PS @ 6000 RPM (P); 71 PS @ 4000 RPM (D)
* Torque: 114 Nm @ 4000 RPM (P); 158 Nm @ 1500-2750 RPM (D)
* Transmission: 5-speed manual
* Top Speed: 165 km/hr (P), 150 km/hr (D) (est.)
* 0-100 km/hr: 13 seconds (P); 14.52 seconds (D) (est.)
* Fuel Consumption: 12 km/l (Petrol), 17 km/l (Diesel)
* Fuel Type: Petrol; Diesel
* Suspension: McPherson struts (Front), Coupled Torsion Beam Axle (Rear)
* Tyres: 165/65/14 Tubeless
* Brakes: Ventilated Disc (Front), Disc (Rear), ABS
* Safety: ABS, EBD, Front Airbags, Parking Sensors

2013 Hyundai Grand i10 Dimensions

* Overall length x width x height: 3765 mm X 1660 mm X 1520 mm
* Wheelbase: 2425 mm
* Front Track/Rear Track: 1479/1493 mm
* Turning Radius: 4.7 metres
* Ground clearance: 165 mm (est.)
* Boot Volume: 256-liters
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 43 litres
* Kerb Weight: 900-1100 kgs (est.)

Further Reading – 

Hyundai Grand i10 Petrol Review
Hyundai Grand i10 vs Maruti Swift
Mega Hatchback Shootout

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