- Efficient engines
- Solid interior quality
- Impressive value for money
- Not as fun to drive as rivals
- 4-star NCAP rating
- Average ride refinement
Stylish, practical supermini
The Hyundai i20 is a small family hatchback that competes in a crowded market with the Volkswagen Polo, the Ford Fiesta, and the Vauxhall Corsa, amongst others. First introduced in 2008, the i20 aimed to provide the quality that you get from a more premium brand, at a more affordable price. The second generation i20 is no different, and edges ever closer to the class-leaders. It’s stylish, spacious, and comes with plenty of standard equipment. It might not have the exceptional interior quality of the Polo, nor is at as fun to drive as a Fiesta, but it’s still an impressive package.
Solid build quality, spacious, and generously equipped
The inside of the i20 focuses more on practicality rather than style. It’s a little disappointing to see that the interior aesthetics aren’t quite as impressive as the exterior, but the i20 is nevertheless spacious, solid, and full of goodies.
The dashboard design of the i20 is functional rather than flashy. It’s not one that’s going to have you gawking at its originality, but everything is exactly where you want it to be. Controls in particular are well-placed, well-damped, and easy to use. The quality of materials used is also impressive, with a variety of coloured soft-touch materials available on the top of the dash. It all feels incredibly well screwed together as well, and there’s no sign of flimsiness.
Storage space is also impressive in the i20, as it has one of the biggest boots in its class. The 326 litre capacity boot is bigger than the Ford Fiesta (290 litres), the Vauxhall Corsa (285 litres) and the Volkswagen Polo (280 litres). That means there’s more room for shopping, and getting a buggy in the back is less of a squeeze. The false floor also increases capacity, and the 60/40 seats fold flat for when you need additional room.
Hyundai has always been generous with its kit list, and the i20 is a prime example of the Korean brand’s generosity. The entry-level S trim doesn’t come with an awful lot, so it’s worth going for the slightly more expensive SE trim. This comes as standard with cruise control, air-con, rear parking sensors, and alloy wheels. There’s no touchscreen infotainment system like you get in some superminis, but that will appeal to buyers who like to keep things simple.
The i20’s interior might not be as well-polished as the Volkswagen Polo, but it’s still a great value package. There’s plenty of space, build quality is excellent, and you’ll also get plenty of standard kit, as long as you avoid the entry-level S trim.
Comfortable, but not a lot of fun
Compared to the Ford Fiesta, the Hyundai i10 isn’t a lot of fun. It is however, an incredibly easy car to drive, especially out of town. There’s plenty of grip through the corners, and there’s very little in the way of body roll, so it’s a capable performer on country roads. Steering is however a little disappointing, as it offers little in the way of feedback, whilst it’s also a little heavy for town driving, so parking can be more difficult than it would be in other rivals.
Suspension and Chassis
Ride refinement is decent in the i20, though it’s not the most comfortable car in its class. The chassis and suspension cope with most rough surfaces and potholes reasonably well, but particularly bad roads can feel a little choppy, especially at low speeds. Road and wind noise are however pretty quiet, which make the i20 a solid motorway cruiser.
Gearbox options in the i20 come in three guises. Entry-level models come with a five-speed transmission that’s sharp and responsive, but for those who do a lot of motorway driving, they’ll wish that they had an extra gear. The 6-speed manual solves this problem, but it’s only available on the diesel i10s, and the 1.0 litre petrol. There’s also an automatic option available, but it’s slow to respond when you need a quick burst of acceleration.
Smooth, refined petrols, and efficient diesels
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your i20, you’ve got the usual two options: petrol, or diesel. There’s three petrol engines in the range, but the 1.0 litre petrol is without doubt the best. Two diesels are also on offer for those who want exceptional fuel efficiency.
If it’s power that you want from your i20, you’re probably going to be disappointed with those on offer in the i20. There’s no hot-hatch version like you’d find in some rivals, with the most powerful being the new 1.0 litre turbocharged petrol engine. This produces 118bhp, and will accelerate from 0-62mph in 10.2 seconds. It’s not the quickest car in its class, but it’s plenty nippy about town, and has more than enough grunt to overtake bigger cars on the motorway.
Eco-friendly buyers will undoubtedly want to consider the incredibly clean diesel-powered 1.1 CRDi Blue, which produces just 84g/km of CO2 emissions. That’s up there with the best in the class, so not only will you have the peace of mind that you’re helping to save the planet, you’ll also get free road tax. That also means it’s the best option for money-savers, and it also achieves an amazing 88.3mpg. With this engine, you can save yourself some serious money.
Whichever engine you choose to for in your i20, you’re going to have enough power to be nippy around town, impressive fuel efficiency, and solid eco-credentials. The new 1.0 litre turbocharged petrol engine offers the best balance of the three though.
Four star NCAP results, good standard safety kit
Unlike quite a few cars in its class, the Hyundai i20 failed to achieve the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. With scores of 85% in adult safety, 73% in child safety, and 79% in pedestrian safety, the i20 isn’t quite up there with the very best in the supermini class, but it’s still a very safe car. This is enhanced with the safety equipment that comes as standard. Even entry-level models come with six airbags, traction control, electronic stability control, and a tyre-pressure monitoring system.
Great value for money, if you avoid the cost of new-car depreciation
The Hyundai i20 is one of the best value superminis currently on sale. Not only is it cheaper than a lot of its rivals, it’s also economical to run. This varies from model to model, but CO2 emissions are low throughout the range, and fuel efficiency is impressive across the board. The best value is to be had with the low-powered diesel engine, but it’s not as flexible to use day-to-day as the other engines.
Insurance costs in the i20 also represent good value for money. Again this depends on which engine and trim you choose to go for, but you certainly won’t be paying any more than you would for an equivalent rival. The cheapest i20 to insure is the 1.2 S, which is in group 4, whilst the most expensive is the 1.4 CRDi Premium SE Nav, which is in group 11.
Depreciation is a large factor with the i20, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
Gone are the days when Hyundai was a brand that was worthy of mockery. The Hyundai i20 is one of the most complete superminis currently on sale. It’s spacious, reliable, and comes with an impressive warranty. If you’re looking for a supermini that offers tremendous value for money, ditch the brand snobbery, and take a closer look at the Hyundai i20.
Buying a used Hyundai i20 online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Hyundai i20 for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used i20. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Hyundai i20 online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Hyundai? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Hyundai i20, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used i20, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Hyundai to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.