For those who don’t like their curries too spicy, the warm hatchback has been a great happy medium between full blown ASBO inducers and the standard model. In the real world not everyone needs a car that yearns for the track, but their sporty appearance is certainly attractive. Replacing the Hyundai Veloster, this is the 2016 Hyundai i30 Turbo which represents a more conventional warm hatch offering than its obscurely doored predecessor. However, this marketplace is becoming evermore crowded. How does this example compete?
Well, I think Hyundai has succeeded on the styling front as the new i30 Turbo strikes a good balance between sporting character and what is passable for everyday family use. The wide grill with contrasting “lipstick” around its edge is hosted by a dynamic front bumper. Raked headlights and multi-spoke alloy wheels give this car some attitude. It helps that the 5 door i30 is a good looking car as standard, but these enhancements have the desired effect. In this storm grey our test car looked purposeful and certainly received some attention from the neighbours.
The interior of the 2016 Hyundai i30 Turbo receives a pair of black and red sports seats which are indeed comfortable. There is only one trim level for this model and so all cars come with a touchscreen infotainment display, heated seats, heated steering wheel, dual zone climate control, and parking sensors. This well appointed cabin houses some unique cascading dashboard elements and plenty of cubbies to store loose items. Further red dialling can be found in the form of strutting that lines the steering wheel and doors. There are some scratchy plastics on show, but the interior does feel well screwed together. Good head and leg room in the rear ticks the “suitable for the family” box whilst a 378 litre boot boosts practicality.
Powering the i30 Turbo via the front wheels and a 6 speed manual transmission, is the same 1.6 litre turbocharged petrol engine found in the Veloster Turbo. It produces a good 184 BHP and 265Nm of torque. Whilst performance isn’t set your hair on fire fast, remember that this isn’t meant to be a full blown hot hatch, it is respectable. Work the positive shifting gearbox to keep that turbo at its best and there is an enjoyable level of performance here. 0-62 MPH takes 8 seconds and the cars top speed is 136 MPH. The chassis on which this car is based has been well engineered as it feels agile. Body roll is kept under control and the reassuring grip levels means you can really lean on it through the corners. However, the adjustable steering lacks weight and feel in any of its three modes, meaning you don’t feel too connected to what the car is doing. That is a shame because there are some very enjoyable elements of this package. But tackling B-roads is only one part of this cars design remit. A more sedate drive in urban environments reveals the 2016 Hyundai i30 Turbo to be an easy car to live with. Whilst the light steering is a criticism when driving at a pace, it makes for effortless manoeuvring around town. Visibility is not bad, but the reversing camera does make life much easier. In motion there is little in the way of wind and road noise making for a relaxing drive. On motorways the torque from that turbo aids in meaningful overtakes of dawdlers. You never feel uncomfortable in the Turbo and all things considered it is very happy to fit in with everyday life. Drive on your best behaviour and Hyundai say that this i30 will do 38.7 mpg combined.
The 2016 Hyundai i30 Turbo benefits from all of the virtues of the standard car, no bad thing, but adds a pinch of spice to the recipe. It does rank more on the mild end of the warm hatchback spectrum, but sometimes a Korma is exactly what you fancy for dinner. This 5 door model costs £23,100 and whilst it may not be the cheapest in its class, the healthy amount of standard equipment makes it good value when compared with rivals. If you are in the market for such a car, the new i30 Turbo is worth considering.