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Juliet McGuire

First drive in the Hyundai Grand i10

People are forever telling me that cars just aren’t big enough. When I recommend a compact SUV or even a premium SUV, I am reminded that more space is needed for folks with two kids. And I get it, I myself need a shit-ton of space when I go away for a weekend and it’s just my husband and I. But, I am often brought straight back to reality when I see those who cannot afford said SUVs making it work in which ever car they have available to them. I don’t own a car myself, so I am very fortunate to not have to make any car payments, but if I did, I wouldn’t be able to afford the more spacious (read: premium) cars.

I often use the Hyundai Grand i10 as an example to those who need a bit of a reality check. I have witnessed a family of four, two car seats, with a picnic bag and two bicycles and a pram in tow, fit in to a Grand i10…all the while with smiles on their faces. This family had enjoyed a lovely stroll along the promenade, kids faces smeared with ice cream and mom and dad a few paces behind their mighty mice, holding hands. I was struck not only by the lovely memories being created by this happy family, but by the fact that the Grand i10 provided all that they needed in order to create these memories. This image plays in my head often and so I was quite happy to check out the new third generation Hyundai Grand i10.

IT’S NOT A PERFECT WORLD

Obviously not. In a perfect world we would all be able to afford the exact cars we want and space would never be an issue. But until then, this new Grand i10 will hopefully be the perfect match for small families or those looking to downsize. This new generation is longer, wider, and lower than the previous model with a slightly raised wheelbase. It also has a slightly bigger boot at 260-litres. It has had a few tweaks done to the exterior, especially on the Fluid model which now sports LED daytime running lights and fog lamps, among other things.

Inside is quite dark with the Motion model coming with cloth seats and the Fluid model boasting artificial leather…which I have heard is fantastic for those melted ice cream moments. It’s obviously not a massive car so rear legroom is limited, but for small kids or shorter adults (like myself) it is more than comfortable. There are also Isofix anchorage points as standard across the range. Only the Fluid model has a 60:40 rear split bench.

Grand i10

Standard features are generously sprinkled throughout the Grand i10. The Motion even boasts a 6.2-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as air conditioning and electric windows. The Fluid adds heated side mirrors,  a multi-function steering wheel, and rear park assistance. 

NOW FOR THE BAD NEWS

Look, it is not really bad news, but it is a tiny bit of a let down. I am speaking about the 1.0-litre naturally aspirated engine on offer (there is also a 1.2-litre engine up for grabs which is probably the one I would recommend). The 1.0-litre, mated to a manual transmission (you can opt for an auto ‘box), feels a little bit sluggish on the highway. It frustrated me to no end. But then again, I hate not being able to overtake. Which of course you can do, but it does take quite a bit of planning and a lot of work from the manual gearbox. But if most of your route is in the city and surrounds, you will have no issues. It is born for short distances and urban drives.

THIS OR ITS RIVALS?

Ooooh it’s a tough call to make. I would, as always, recommend driving your top three and then making a choice based on your favourite. If the Hyundai Grand i10 is it, then you cannot go wrong, especially with the 7-year/200 000 km manufacturers’ warranty, a 1-year/15 000 km service plan and 5-years/150 000 km roadside assistance. But if you want to look at others before making your decision, have a look at the likes of the Ford Figo, Kia Picanto and of course, winner-winner-chicken-dinner, the Volkswagen Polo Vivo.

PRICING OF THE GRAND i10

Grand i10 1.0 Motion (manual): R191 900
Grand i10 1.0Motion (automatic): R216 900
Grand i10 1.0 Fluid (manual): R216 900
Grand i10 1.2 Fluid (manual): R230 900
Grand i10 1.2 Fluid (automatic): R256 900

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