Sales figures month to month show the iLoad holds a steady second place to the HiAce with a market share that is growing healthily.
In fact, I myself notice more and more of them on the roads of Sydney and there’s a good reason for it.
After a week in it, I wouldn’t mind driving a Hyundai iLoad and I don’t even have the need for one.
The one-tonner Hyundai van is a cinch to drive with its big wheel and light steering and generally basic controls and dashboard.
Though I’m no tradie or delivery driver, I’m used to driving vans (my old man loved campers and people movers) and there’s something about simplicity of the drive.
Like an SUV, you get a high seating position but it’s much more forward, giving a bird’s eye view of the road and your immediate surroundings.
A van may feel large and cumbersome but the iLoad was no problem to manoeuvre and park thanks to the large wing mirrors and rear view camera even though you can’t ‘see through’ the sides of the vehicle.
Powered by a 2.5 litre diesel there is enough grunt with 441Nm of torque and of course a longer ride with great fuel economy.
Mind you, the road test was done with an empty vehicle.
The rest of the drivetrain consists of a uncomplicated five-speed automatic gearbox in the vehicle I had which is priced at $41,790, or a six-speed manual for $38,790.
While the ride is generally quiet, you will find some road noise emanating from behind the passenger area through the floor, though it may be different with something in the back.
You fit three people (or 2.5) up front on the middle seat with a back rest that folds down to a cup holder and more storage.
If you need more people and less space there is a crew van option with six seats.
Cargo capacity is huge as you can image, at 4426 litres in total, which is clear from the external, boxy dimensions.
Accessing the insides is easy with the tailgate and the two sliding doors on both sides.
A great feature is the safety lock mechanism on the doors that don’t allow them to accidentally slide close unless you disengage it via the handle.
The standard model I had comes with a lift back door but for $550 extra you can get a twin swing tailgate.
The cockpit area up front is simple and straightforward, with only the essentials. And really, that’s all you need.
An extra powerful A/C fan, pop out cup holder, extra storage hutch above the glove box and extra door storage pocket at your feet make up the main features.
Gauges are as basic as they come that I can’t even tell you what the fuel economy was.
I thought it was kind of cute that the recirculate button on the A/C had an icon of a tiny van instead of the usual car.
As unsophisticated and lacking in luxury as it was, I enjoyed my week in the Hyundai iLoad. I think I’ll become a plumber just so I can buy one.
NUTS and BOLTS 2017 Hyundai iLoad Review
Engine: 2.5L diesel producing 125kW and 441Nm
Transmission: Five-speed automatic or six-speed manual
Warranty: 5 Year/160,000km
Safety: Not yet tested
Origin: South Korea
Price: From $38,790