What's the used Hyundai i30 estate like?
A compact estate car might sound like a contradiction but, in fact, cars such as the Hyundai i30 Tourer make a huge amount of sense these days.
With larger estates having grown to gargantuan proportions, it’s been left to the i30 – and better-known rivals including the Volkswagen Golf, Skoda Octavia and Vauxhall Astra – to offer alternatives with proportions that are more manageable around town yet have a big enough boot to carry the detritus associated with young kids (not to mention the occasional flat pack).
The i30 Tourer may not be as well known as its rivals, but it’s one of the more attractive small estates around. You get a choice of two petrol and two diesel engines, of which the most widely available is the 118bhp 1.0-litre turbo petrol.
The range kicks off with S, then moves up through SE and SE Nav, both of which get a colour touchscreen and rear-view camera as standard. Premium, with climate control as standard, and leather-lined Premium SE models sit at the top of the range.
To drive, the i30 Tourer is a bit of a mixed bag. The suspension is a touch on the firm side, meaning it isn’t quite as comfortable as it could be. This doesn’t translate to good body control in the corners, either, with the result that the i30 Tourer leans over a little too much. You do get nicely weighted steering, but without much in the way of feel or directness. What’s more, none of the engines feels particularly fast out on the road.
Inside, things are better, however – and, let’s face it, the interior is what matters in an estate. The boot is impressive; not the biggest around but not far from it, and endowed with a low loading lip and easy-to-fold rear seats, even if they do leave a small step when they’re down.
Further forward, the rear seats are more cramped than those in most estates – that's is a bit of a disappointment – but they are at least comfortable. The front seats have no such space issues, though, offering plenty of head and leg room.
The dashboard, meanwhile, is rather dour, but at least it’s sensibly laid out, easy to find your way around and built robustly. In fact, it’s something of a metaphor for the i30 Tourer as a whole; solid, sensible and entirely fit for purpose, but just a bit dull.
Advice for buyers
What should I look for in a used Hyundai i30 estate?
We haven’t heard of any major issues affecting the i30 Tourer or its hatchback sibling yet but, because the model’s still so new, that shouldn’t come as a huge surprise.
Nevertheless, it pays to look at your prospective purchase carefully. Those interior plastics may be robust, but check them carefully for any scuffing or cracking, especially in the rear of the car. The same goes for the seat fabrics.
Check, too, that all the electrical equipment works as it should and, of course, that there are no nasty warning messages or lights on the dashboard.
And, as with all estates, there’s a chance that an i30 Tourer has been used to carry heavy loads or garden waste. So it’s worth poking around the boot to look for signs that it’s been used and abused, such as grazed plastics or dirty boot carpet.
What are the most common problems with a used Hyundai i30 estate?
Is a used Hyundai i30 estate reliable?
It's too early for us to have gathered any reliability data on the i30 Tourer of this generation. However, in our latest reliability survey, its predecessor finished third out of 28 in the family car category for vehicles aged 0-3 years. While not conclusive, it's an extremely good omen. What’s more, Hyundai came seventh out of 32 manufacturers in the same survey – another positive sign.
All i30 Tourers came with a five-year, unlimited-mileage warranty when new. So when most rivals’ warranties are expiring at three years old, the i30 Tourer’s will still have two years left to run. Read the small print before you buy, though, because the level of cover on certain items drops in the final two years.
What used Hyundai i30 estate will I get for my budget?
At the time of writing, prices for the i30 Tourer start at around £12,000 for something with high mileage. However, since the model is still relatively new, prices haven’t yet settled down, so expect that figure to drop in the short term.
If you want to know whether an i30 Tourer you’re thinking of buying is worth the asking price, why not try the free What Car? Valuations tool?
How much does it cost to run a Hyundai i30 estate?
Fuel consumption figures for petrol-powered i30 Tourers fall slightly towards the back of the class, although the diesels are some of the more economical among cars of this type and size. Meanwhile, every i30 Tourer will cost you a flat rate of £140 a year to tax.
Hyundai’s servicing costs are very reasonable, and if you sign up before the car’s first service, you can take out of Hyundai’s service plans, which allow you to prepay for two, three or five years’ worth of servicing, reducing the cost in the process.
Meanwhile, when your i30 Tourer reaches five years old, it’ll be eligible for Hyundai’s eSENSEtials servicing scheme, which is one of the cheapest main-dealer fixed-price servicing schemes for older cars.
Which used Hyundai i30 estate should I buy?
As we’ve already discussed, the 1.0-litre turbo petrol is the most widely available engine and, handily, it’s also the best. It feels just as punchy as the larger 1.4 out on the road, and while it isn’t as efficient as the diesels, the cost saving on the purchase price will mitigate that for all but the highest-mileage drivers.
We’d team that with SE or SE Nav trim; again, these are the most popular on the used market and come with more than enough equipment to make them very agreeable propositions for the day to day.
Our favourite Hyundai i30 Tourer 1.0 T-GDI SE
What alternatives should I consider to a used Hyundai i30 estate?
The most obvious alternative is the Volkswagen Golf Estate, which is more enjoyable to drive and more comfortable than the i30 Tourer, and is also endowed with a classier interior. The downside, of course, is that you pay the price for all this finery because it’s costlier to buy.
The Seat Leon ST is a more palatable alternative, cost-wise. It isn’t quite as smart inside as the Golf Estate but its interior matches the Hyundai’s for quality and usability, plus it’s better to drive.
It’s worth noting, of course, that neither of the above cars comes with Hyundai’s five-year warranty. If a long warranty is what you’re after, you’ll need to look at the Toyota Auris Touring Sports, which has a five-year, 100,000-mile warrantly, or the Kia Cee'd Sportswagon, with its seven-year, 100,000-mile guarantee.