Joel Helmes road tests and reviews the 2014 Hyundai i40 Tourer.
Hyundai made its name in Australia with cheap little models that offered new car ownership to buyers on a budget.
Now, as Hyundai has matured into a full-service brand that consistently sits in the top three of the sales race, they are asking Australian buyers to give their more premium models a chance.
With the new high-end Genesis on the way and models like the i40 in dealerships, Hyundai really has a car for everyone.
The Hyundai i40 sedan range starts at $31,990, the Tourer versions start at $33,990 and both body styles are offered in three specification levels, with a choice of either a petrol or diesel engine offered in all.
That is some quite remarkable choice!
The i40 Tourer Premium with 1.7 litre turbo-diesel engine is the most expensive offering in the range and prices start at $47,590. That might seem an awful lot of money for a Hyundai, but there’s very little this car doesn’t have!
First of all the diesel engine is a real winner. Boasting only 100kW, but a powerful 320Nm, the engine has plenty of low-down grunt and that means effortless highway cruising – albeit initial acceleration is a little pedestrian.
Best of all is the fuel economy – the official combined rate is 6.0L/100kms, in a week of city and some highway driving I averaged a touch over 7L/100kms.
The power is delivered smoothly through the i40’s six-speed automatic transmission and you will be relieved to know the engine isn’t at all a noisy old diesel!
The ride, though the Premium comes with low-profile 45 series tyres on 18”alloy wheels, is excellent and the handling is surprisingly sharp.
Inside the cabin, well it’s all very impressive! With a modern and attractive look, great fit and finish and plenty of legroom front and back, the cabin of the i40 Tourer is a nice place to be.
Those standard features in this grade of the i40 are many and varied, including heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, full length glass roof, leather seats, keyless entry, push button ignition, powered tailgate, lane departure warning and a cooled glove box!
The i40 will even park itself!
The rear cargo area is fairly well-sized, though the slopping rear tailgate takes some room away. Handy little storage areas on the sides of the cargo area are handy and this grade and the mid-spec Elite version of the i40 Tourer gets a floor rail system and cargo net to keep things secured.
From the driver’s seat I did find a flaw in the i40 and one that really could be an issue for prospective buyers – the size and placement of the A pillars. Sure, the i40 has those amazing sweeping good looks, but the trade-off is really poor front/side visibility, and T intersections and roundabouts need to be approached with care.
The size-able wing mirrors also don’t help the situation!
As yet the i40 hasn’t been crashed tested and thus an ANCAP safety rating is yet to be awarded.
Summing it up: This is a quality offering. With head turning styling, an extensive list of standard features, and an ultra-efficient and powerful diesel engine and generous warranty, the i40 Tourer Premium has a great story to tell. Just beware of the visibility from the driver’s seat!
Direct competitors include; Ford Mondeo Titanium, Mazda6 GT, Peugeot 508 Allure, Skoda Octavia Elegance and Volkswagen Passat.
NUTS and BOLTS
Engine: 1.7 litre turbo-diesel producing 100kW and 320Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic
Safety: Not tested
Origin: South Korea
Price: From $47,590