Hyundai's new i20 supermini, which will be unveiled at the Paris motor show next week, is expected to undercut the best-selling Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa by up to £1200 while offering more standard equipment.
The i20 will replace the Getz and offers significant improvements in fuel economy, quality and space over the old model.
Although it will be built in India, the car was designed in Europe with the European market in mind.
It uses a new platform that will be shared with several Kia models, starting with the Soul that will also make its debut at Paris.
Of the four engines coming to the UK, three are new ones – a 78bhp 1.2-litre petrol and 75 and 90bhp 1.4-litre turbodiesels. Buyers will also be able to opt for the 100bhp 1.4-litre petrol engine from the bigger i30.
A 128bhp 1.6-litre diesel may also be available here when the three-door i20 arrives in April to give Hyundai a rival for Skoda's Fabia vRS.
Five-door models will go on sale in mid-January.
A high-economy 'blue' model will be added in 2010 with sub-100g/km CO2 emissions, making it exempt from road tax.
It gets its savings through a stop-start system, different engine mapping, less internal friction, a six-speed gearbox and a lower ride height that reduces aerodynamic drag.
There's room for four six-foor adults in the i20's nicely trimmed cabin, and maybe even five at a pinch.
Three trim levels will be available – Classic, Comfort and Style – all will get six airbags, air-conditioning and the option of low-cost stability control.
Hyundai is hoping the entry-level 1.2 three-door will come in around £7500.
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