What’s happened to the Hyundai i20? It looks different, it feels different, it sounds different … it is, well, different!
First, its looks: the new i20 1.4 Sport has a dashingly modern design with 17-inch alloy rims, a stainless steel free-flow cat-back exhaust system and N-badges on the front mudguards and rear hatchback door. It also boasts a ‘Sport Body kit’, which consists of side skirts and front and rear bumper trim finishes that carry the sporty line through from the side skirts, and a rear boot spoiler.
It feels different thanks to stiffer springs, which have given the i20 1.4 Sport a lower stance on the road, and a suspension tweak has created a firmer ride, sporty handling and secure road-holding. (The free-flow exhaust system announces its increased engine power, which has been increased to 85 kW, with maximum torque of 160 Nm.)
Offering above-average impact resistance, there is a strong chassis and body shell, which benefits from advanced high-strength steel. Other safety features include a driver and front passenger airbag, with front and rear seatbelt pre-tensioners and a lap belt for the middle passenger in the rear. The height-adjustable head restraints provide protection against whiplash.
Every i20 model is fitted with a four-wheel electronic four-channel ABS and EBS. Ventilated disc brakes are used on the front wheels, while the rear wheels are equipped with solid disc brakes.
Wheelchair users will find that this car gives them the freedom to go wherever and whenever they wish – no more waiting for others to drive them around. The car is accessible: the doors open wide, the vehicle is fairly low off the ground and the boot can accommodate a wheelchair.
Several hi-tech adjustments have resulted in sharply reduced interior noise and vibration.
And there are other new features too – automatic folding door mirrors and smartphone docking integration; USB and auxiliary connectivity fitted as standard with an audio system; along with a Bluetooth hands-free phone function and the ability to stream music over the sound system with Bluetooth from a cellphone or MP3 player.
The 1.4-litre engine in the i20 Sport is mated to a six-speed manual gearbox.
Come on, have some fun … contact your nearest Hyundai dealer today to organise a test drive!
At the time of going to press, the i20 Sport costs R238 000, which includes the Hyundai warranty and roadside assistance for five years or 150 000 km, and a service plan for three years or 60 000 km.