Those who discounted Hyundai a decade ago as merely being a bargain basement manufacturer with no real hope at the big time are probably blushing now. It is slowly gaining on the establishment, challenging it wherever it can, even the mid-sized luxury segment, though, it’d better make sure things lower in the range are worth building on, so the new i20 is hugely important.
The old car was clearly a Euro design, being a mishmash of Opel Corsa, Renault Clio and some of Kia’s own styling too. This new one distances itself from its predecessor’s look, going for a more individual approach. It’s still not original, but neither is it a copy of something else this time.
What also helps its visual appeal is the fact that it’s (40 mm) lower, (24 mm) wider, (40 mm) longer and (16 mm) lower than before, with (5 mm) less rear overhang – wheelbase is stretched by 45 mm.
It’s a comfort-oriented car too, so it won’t be a suitable first car for a budding boy racer. Engines wouldn’t please said boy racer either, as the i20’s power plant lineup is comprised of five units none getting more than 100 metric horsepower.
A slightly more spritely unit will be added to the range, though, a 1.0-liter T-GDI turbo engine that makes 120 PS – it’s coming in 2015.
Check out the live photos from the i20’s Paris motor show debut after the virtual jump!