Hyundai i30N review

Category: Hot hatch

Section: Costs & verdict

Star rating
Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD infotainment
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  • Hyundai i30N 2020 front cornering
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  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD dashboard
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD rear seats
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD infotainment
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 wide front cornering
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 left panning
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 rear tracking
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD front seats
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD gearshift
  • Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD boot open

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

As we mentioned at the beginning, Hyundai is a latecomer to the hot hatch market, so it needed to build a really good car and undercut its more established rivals on price if it was to succeed in grabbing people’s attention. And fair play to the brand for achieving just that.

Whether you compare the standard i30N against rivals such as the Ford Focus ST, or the Performance model against the Honda Civic Type R and Renault Megane RS, the Hyundai looks like good value for money. Even the priciest N, the Fastback, doesn’t cost much more than the regular Performance model. That said, if you are buying outright, it’s worth noting that the i30N is predicted to depreciate at a quicker rate than all three of those main rivals.

In addition, every i30N comes very well equipped. The standard car has 18in alloy wheels, LED headlights, red brake calipers, automatic lights and wipers, privacy glass, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera. The i30N Performance adds leather upholstery and electric front seats with driver’s seat height adjustment and memory recall.

You also get plenty of standard driver aids. These include automatic emergency braking, a driver fatigue monitor, automatic speed limit recognition and lane departure warning. What's more, the regular i30 was awarded five stars (out of five) for safety by Euro NCAP.

However, don't dive into i30N ownership expecting regular hatchback running costs; clearly, a 2.0-litre engine that pumps out 271bhp (for the Performance model) isn’t going to sip fuel like a thrifty diesel. Indeed, in our real-world tests, the i30N Performance averaged 31.2mpg, while the more powerful Civic Type R managed 35.1mpg.

The latest i30 was too new to feature in the 2019 What Car? Reliability Survey. However, Hyundai performed well as a brand, finishing seventh out of 31 manufacturers included.

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Hyundai i30N 2020 RHD infotainment
Hyundai i30N 2020 front cornering
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Overview

The Hyundai i30N is a well-equipped, great-value hot hatch that will really put a smile on your face. There are quicker alternatives – the best of those is the Honda Civic Type R – but the i30N still makes loads of sense, particularly in entry-level 247bhp guise. The Fastback, meanwhile, offers a bit of extra load space and sleeker looks for a little extra cash.

  • Precise handling
  • Responsive engine
  • Well priced and equipped
  • Not as fast as some rivals
  • Bland interior
  • Tight rear knee room

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