AGGRESSIVE exterior styling combined with an elegant interior. The 2021 Hyundai i30 Active and Elite sedans are here to replace the now-discontinued Elantra name, and this new version of the bestseller does a great job of it as well.
We’ll call this car’s body a panel beater’s worst nightmare, as its modern, sharp look includes styling lines on the door panels. Your average chip repairer will take a look and just order new doors.
Not us though, we appreciate the uniqueness of it all. It adds character, and cars that are generally overlooked in the small car category need a lot of character.
On the outside, there isn’t much of a difference between the Active, which is the entry-level sedan, and the Elite, which is the higher spec of the two. We have to say that the 17-inch wheels don’t do the variants justice either.
An 18-inch alloy set with a smaller profile tire to fill in the guards a bit would have been the smarter choice. But inside, comfort and luxury are guaranteed, and the Active and Elite both come with sumptuous leather trim.
Considering the first set of i30 hatches a long time ago it came in a bland fabric trim with a lackluster body style it has come a long way. The seats are comfortable and wide, but unfortunately the adjustment is manual in both models.
Jump into the passenger seat and thanks to the handle on the center console next to the gear lever, you’ll almost feel like you’re in some sort of prison or cage, albeit luxurious with no prospect of punishment.
There is also the matter of the interior coloring of the Elite. You’ll find your usual black and gray accents in the Active, but the entire driver’s side of the Elite is cream, color to match the seats.
This includes the driver’s door card and, for some reason, the right rear door card. We can figure out the driver’s door, but the rear passenger door being different from the other side was a bit strange.
The Active has a traditional analog instrument cluster with an 8.0-inch multimedia display, while the upgrade to the Elite gives you two 10.25-inch displays, one for multimedia and one for the instrument cluster.
Wireless charging is standard across the range and you also get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The Elite’s digital cluster is fantastic to say the least.
We found ourselves sitting at the traffic lights changing the drive mode between the three options just to watch the whimsical animations. And if that’s not enough, the instrument cluster and multimedia unit are customizable.
The interior is harmonious, especially with the ambient noise available on the multimedia system of the Elite. There are two cup holders in the front, two in the back and bottle holders in the doors. The trunk space is 474 liters with the seats up and 1,350 with the seats down.
It is also safe to say that we are huge fans of Hyundai’s styling.
Under the hood, both sedans are powered by the same naturally aspirated 2.0-liter in-line 4-cylinder petrol engine, which makes figures of 117 kW and 191 Nm.
It’s a bit of a letdown, but Hyundai’s 4-banger gets the job done, although the engine noise can be a bit overwhelming. This is especially the case if the engine is having trouble climbing a steep hill and you need to lower a few gears.
Fortunately, these engines are paired with your choice of a 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed automatic transmission in the Active, while the Elite only gets the automatic transmission.
Our test vehicles both arrived as automatic and we thought the transmissions were excellent. Gear changes were smooth and responsive without the throttle suspension of a CVT and the awkwardness of less refined and less refined transmissions.
Handling is generally quite good although we found the steering to be quite heavy regardless of the driving mode, especially at low speeds. We punished our test cars with a lot of bumpy roads in the suburbs, but they were surprisingly out of step.
We also came closer to Hyundai’s reported consumption of 7.5 liters / 100 km, with 8.2 liters / 100 km in the Active and 7.7 liters / 100 km in the Elite. Both were primarily used for suburban driving with occasional highway crossings.
Suspension tuning for Australian roads is also one of Hyundai’s strengths, and it shows in the i30 sedan, almost to the point of rivaling other comfortable cruising cars such as Toyota’s Camry and the Mazda6.
Hyundai hasn’t done the cheap when it comes to safety either, with lane-keeping assist, autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring and traffic alert. rear transverse, some of the main features included.
The lane-keeping assist system gets a bit annoying as it is set to ‘on’ by default every time the car is started, but a quick and long press of the appropriate button on the wheel will turn it off, if it is. is what you want.
Prices start at $ 24,790 (more highway) for the Manual Active and $ 26,790 (more highway) for the automatic variant, excluding highway costs. The Elite-only automatic starts from $ 30,790 (more on the roads). Hyundai also offers a 5-year unlimited mileage warranty.
The 2021 Hyundai i30 Active and Elite sedans are spectacular car kit pieces, delivering a reliable cruiser with a lot of personality and soul, with a little more room for sportiness and fun.
Our 2021 Hyundai i30 Active and Hyundai i30 Elite sedans were provided by Hyundai Australia. For more information, contact your local Hyundai dealer. Photos courtesy of J_Hui Design / Photography.
Hyundai i30 Active and Elite Sedan 2021