The interiors of the Elite i20 are good and feel is also decent. The beige and black combination might not impress all, but the car comes loaded with various bells and whistles that aren’t available on all the cars in this segment.
The Elite i20 gets black and beige interiors with an instrument panel inspired by the recently launched Grand i10. The quality of plastics is good and we like the blue backlit interiors. The features list is long and this includes the rear AC vents, reverse parking camera, 1 GB of hard disk in the music system, and this system also gets Bluetooth, aux and USB connectivity.
The seats of the Elite i20 are flat and didn’t feel like they were bolstered enough in the right places. There is immense legroom in the front row, which will comfortably seat six-footers. The rear gets cramped when tall people are seated comfortably in the front seats. Rear seat occupants will also feel a little claustrophobic due to the small, tapering rear windows and thick C pillars. The boot too is sufficient for weekend trips.
Era: It is a base variant of Hyundai i20, which is powered by the 1.2-litre petrol and 1.4-litre diesel engines with five-speed manual transmission and six-speed manual gearbox respectively. It has features like AC, motor driven electronic power steering, front power windows, centre lock, two speakers with two tweeters, engine immobilizer, battery saver, etc.
Magna: The Magna version has some additional features as compared to Era that are body coloured ORVMs, fabric upholstery, rear parcel tray, glove box cooling, foldable key, luggage lamp, all power windows with auto down for driver side window, reverse sensors and driver seat belt reminder. This version also gets 1 GB hard drive.
Sportz : Along with features of Magna Optional, it boasts features like alloy wheels, driver side airbag, 60:40 rear folding seat, steering controls for audio and Bluetooth, ABS, front fog lamps, Driver and passenger seat belt pre tensioners, tilt and telescopic steering and rain sensing wipers.
Asta: The Asta version gets more bells and whistles than the 2 airbags, height adjustable driver’s seat, rear wiper and washer, smart key with button start, rear spoiler with high mounted stop lamp, front seat arm rest, supervision cluster are the additional features apart from standard features present in i20 Sportz.
Micra is a high-refined product form the Japanese automotive manufacturer. It is light and driving it is a breeze. The space is sufficient with decent seating. It also comes loaded with bells and whistles that are now being introduced in other B+ segment hatchbacks.
The Micra continues with its curvy theme for the interiors. The door handles, the tachometer, the air-con vents, the centre console all are round in shape. With the Micra, you can cash-in on features like keyless entry, push button start and electrically folding ORVMs, which are first-in segment. The quality of the interiors plastics is good and the fit and finish is also decent.
The space in the Micra is good. The space for the front row is sufficient with enough support for your back and thighs. At the rear, though the thigh support could have been better. The size of the boot is also sufficient.
XE: The XE is the base model on the Micra and it is available only on the petrol version. The XE comes with body coloured bumpers, integrated head rests in the front seats, power steering, tilt steering, driver airbag and manual AC.
XL: The XL is the model above XE and it is again available only in the petrol version. The XL version comes with rear wipers and washer, adjustable front and rear seats, in-dash music system with 4-speakers with aux-in port, tachometer, rear parcel tray, central locking and remote keyless entry. There is an inclusion of the USB and Bluetooth connectivity as well.
XV: The XV is the top model for the petrol engine and the base model for the diesel engine. The XV version comes with body coloured ORVMs and door handles, rear defogger, electrically foldable mirrors, keyless entry and push start. The petrol comes with dual airbags and ABS, while the diesel version only gets driver airbag and no ABS. The petrol and diesel also get front fog lamps.
XV Premium: The XV Premium is available only on the diesel version and front fog lamps, alloys and 15-inch tyres. Also the XV Premium gets rear spoiler and leather wrapped steering wheel and gear knob. It now even gets ABS as an added feature and it gets reverse parking camera as well.
All the engines on the offering by Hyundai are good in fuel efficiency. So depending on the amount of your daily running, choose the engine. You may not worry about the reliability of the product.
1.2-litre petrol MT:
The 1.2-litre petrol engine on the i20 is the Kappa2 engine, which has the variable valve timing. It is a highly refined engine, which produces a maximum power of 83bhp at 6000rpm and a torque of 112Nm at 4000rpm. Refinement levels are high.
With the i20 weighing a little more a ton, on paper the car feels underpowered, but once the engine crosses 3000rpm, it means serious business. At low engine speeds, the motor does feel sluggish. The true power of the car is unveiled. The performance isn’t staggering, but is definitely one of the best in its class. What we appreciate in the i20 is the fuel efficiency of this mill, as it easily returns 12-14km/l in city driving.
1.4-litre diesel MT:
The 1.4-litre common rail engine used in the i20 is a highly refined CRDi engine. The 16-valve 89bhp 1396cc engine produces a maximum of 220Nm of torque giving the car a head start. There is a lot of turbo lag and the engine feels sluggish, which can be quite annoying in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
The i20’s CRDi engine is noisy and the strong turbo kick at about 1800rpm will make you smile. For overtaking, one needs to downshift. The six-speed manual transmission is as slick as the same five-speed manual. The throws are short and positive, and this is the only diesel in this segment to get a six-speed box.
Both the engines on the Micra are refined and drivable. The 1.5-litre diesel is a highly frugal engine with low NVH levels, both the petrol and diesel are recommendable. It all depends on your usage. For automatic, you only have the petrol CVT.
Nissan is another recent entrant that introduced the Micra for the Indian car market. The Micra has a three-pot 1.2-litre petrol engine with 75bhp and 104Nm under its belt. The engine has low NVH levels and it pulls seamlessly once the tachometer needle crosses 2000rpm. If you are the more attuned type, you shall notice that the engine shows a slight hesitation before the revs rise, even though it is quite imperceptible.
The petrol engine comes mated to the 5-speed manual. The gear shifts are a tad rubbery. The engine doesn’t show any sign of strain when you lug it in a high gear. Overtaking in Micra is a breeze. The ARAI mileage of the Micra petrol is 18.06kmpl. There is also the CVT box available on the Micra that is a good option for those drive within city. The fuel efficiency of the CVT box hasn’t been shared by ARAI, but Nissan claims it to be about 19kmpl.
Nissan gets the K9K engine from the Renault’s stable. This is the same engine that powers the Mahindra Verito, Renault Pulse. This engine churns out 63bhp of power at 4000rpm and 160Nm of torque at 2000rpm. K9K is another engine, which after the multijet is gaining popularity in the Indian car scene. None of the compared machines in this lot comes anywhere close to the smoothness, refinement and frugalness offered by this mill. Power delivery is linear just like a petrol car with no sign of latency from the turbocharger. Overtakes in the Micra are just a right foot away.
Even the diesel engine like the petrol comes mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. Gearing is spot-on however the rubbery shifts are a let-down to such a well-engineered powertrain. The ARAI claimed mileage for the oil burner version of the Micra is 23.08kmpl.
The driving dynamics of the Elite i20 is good and the ride quality has been improved and so has the handling characteristics.
The ride on the Elite i20 is good and the handling has been improved when compared to its outgoing model. The handling has improved by several notches and even the steering feel is much better. The steering wheel does feel slack around a corner.
The ride on the i20 is good at low speeds, however it does get a bit jittery at high speeds. On smooth surfaces the ride is pliant and this remains constant even on rough surfaces, the overall ride quality is fairly decent. The rear is a tad soft than the front.
Micra has one of the best ride suppleness as it has softly sprung suspension. The handling is decent for city driving, for which the hatchback has been built.
All the cars in this segment have a sorted ride as the suspension doesn’t jiggle and disturb the peace of the occupants. Road undulations are well-taken care by the suspension. The Micra has one of the best ride suppleness as it underpins the softest suspension set-up that glides over potholes. The Micra has the McPherson struts at its front and torsion beam at its end.
The suspension set-up being soft, it isn’t a great handler. The handling is just fine. It is just that some manufacturers have further raised the standards for some cars. Even the light steering wheel makes driving a breeze. Driving and maneuvering in city becomes easy. Now with reverse parking camera, tight spot parking is also easy.