New Hyundai i30 N Line evaluation
Positioned beneath its flagship sibling, the N Line is a semi-skimmed rival to Ford’s ST-Line automobiles, VW’s R-Line alternate options, and even BMW’s M Sport line-up. It blends sporty styling with extra modest engine choices for decrease operating prices and extra reasonably priced insurance coverage premiums.
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The i30 is the primary Hyundai to get the N Line remedy. There are two trim ranges and two gearbox choices, linked in each case to a 138bhp 1.4-litre turbo petrol engine. Right here, we’re testing the pricier dual-clutch transmission in top-spec N Line+ specification.
Visually, there’s no denying the N Line tweaks give the marginally dowdy-looking i30 a extra aggressive character. All automobiles get sportier bumpers, twin exhausts and greater 18-inch wheels; removed from a poor-man’s i30 N, it appears to be like each bit the racy sizzling hatchback.
However regardless of the aesthetic enhancements, a fast drive within the N Line reveals it’s extra Masala than Madras. True, the chassis revisions, up to date suspension and superior brakes guarantee it handles sweetly, however the engine feels overly restrained subsequent to its beefier brother.
Energy supply is easy, particularly when mated to our automotive’s DCT field, however there is a lack of urgency on something aside from full throttle. It’s a disgrace, as a result of the 1.5 TSI unit in a Volkswagen Golf feels genuinely fast compared – regardless of boasting solely 10bhp extra. We’re but to attempt a handbook i30 N Line, however we anticipate this automotive could really feel sooner and extra involving.
Don’t let this detract from the very fact the Hyundai is a genuinely succesful and well-resolved household hatchback. The tweaked suspension hasn’t upset the compliant trip, and nor do these massive wheels appear to hunt out ruts within the street. The steering doesn’t supply a lot suggestions, but it surely’s removed from disagreeable, sending the i30 by tight corners with first rate accuracy.
Take issues a bit extra gently and the i30 N Line is completely refined. The engine is hushed round city and settles down properly on the motorway. We’d don’t have any reservations spending a number of hours behind the wheel – particularly given the sculpted and supportive sports activities seats.
In truth, the inside is an actual spotlight; it’s a bit darkish within the again, maybe, however all automobiles are properly outfitted and Hyundai’s glorious infotainment set-up is without doubt one of the most intuitive methods available on the market. Perceived high quality isn’t far off the i30’s ‘premium’ rivals, both.
N Line+ automobiles command a £2,000 premium over customary N Line fashions, however come full with LED headlights, electrical seat adjustment and a heated steering wheel. Sat-nav is a £250 add-on no matter trim, however we’d keep away from that and follow the succesful smartphone-operated Apple or Android mapping methods.
Nevertheless, these additional prices pale into insignificance when you think about that for simply £755 extra (£25,010) you should purchase your self a bog-standard i30 N – with 247bhp and virtually 400Nm of torque. Granted, the associated fee distinction is greater in the event you examine apples with apples; the handbook N Line+ is £1,000 lower than the pricier auto examined right here.
Wring the N Line’s engine out like we did and also you’ll discover gasoline financial system doesn’t differ too wildly from the new hatch, both. Hyundai says our automotive ought to return virtually 50mpg (in comparison with the N’s 40.4mpg), however a determine within the high-30s is extra possible in day-to-day driving.