Hyundai i10 is cute & one of the best small hatchback car i have ever driven. I purchased it long back in 2008 & driving experience till today has been more than excellent every single time i have driven it. Ofcourse i have maintained it very well & i keep hearing from my friends that it still looks like new even after 8+ years. I had many friends asking me if i am planning to sell this one for another car.
The two-tone colour scheme lends an air of richness associated with cars higher in the ladder of automotive segments and the plastics and knobs have a nice feel to them as well. One thing that stands out as a unique aspect is the placement of the gear-shift lever which is housed on the centre console. This liberates a good amount of space on the floor which has been utilized smartly by endowing it with useful storage spaces and cup holders. There are enough spaces to carry things ranging from your wallet or cell phone to bottles of a litre capacity. The luggage space too is decent but the deep loading-lip can be a cause of concern while loading/unloading baggage. The disappointment comes in shape of the door pockets which are narrow on the front doors and missing at the rear.
The interior otherwise is a congenial place to be in. On the comfort aspect too, the i10 is bang upto the mark. The front seats are shaped in a way to offer you the best support in all the right places. The head-restraints are not a different unit as seen in other cars and are an extension of the chairs.
The ideal driving position can be arrived at with ease and the view of the outside is pretty good. I missed a dead-pedal at the side of the clutch though. The rear bench is adequately firm and pampers you with good comfort levels. The protrusions at the bottom of the rear seats do not allow the occupants to stretch legs.
It does not bite an eyelid and will take you from speeds as low as 15kmph to all the way upto 120kmph, and that too without making the car feel like it's going to cough up to a halt at low speeds and die out of pain at higher revs. The engine is essentially the same 1.1-litre unit that powers with slightly more power which is now peak-rated at 67 horses with iRDE pasted on top of it. It is not as fast off the line as its smaller sibling, Santro, but it performs admiringly.
Handling and Ride
At slow speeds you surely can sense the odd pothole and suspension 'thuds' are quite audible, but it never swings towards the bad side of the balance and the ride quality improves folds on end as you gain speed. Handling is neutral till the point that you do not demand a lot from the chassis. The steering is a delight to use and does not feel all that confused even when doing high speeds.
The launch price of the car is around Rs 4 lakhs. It comes in many good colours. The car competes with the likes of Maruti Suzuki Wagon R and Tata Indica Xeta. The hatch is a small car with a fully loaded package. The car provides for space and is quicker than its counterparts. I think, the i10 is a quality choice for those who enjoy riding their cars.
The i10 has been a huge success over the last few years. I love it thoroughly & its driving experience is amazing.
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