Hyundai i10 vs rivals

6 Feb, 2014 10:52am

All-new Hyundai i10 aims to get back to the top of city car class

Until a couple of years ago, the Hyundai i10 ruled the city car roost. Yet after a lengthy reign at the top it was ousted by the VW up! and then the Skoda Citigo. However, there’s now an all-new i10, and it’s out to reclaim its place at the top of the class.

Hyundai i10 review

Skoda Citigo review

Fiat Panda review

Boasting sharper looks, a bigger, more upmarket interior and more grown-up driving dynamics, the newcomer promises to be the most desirable small car that money can buy. Yet Hyundai hasn’t lost sight of the car’s core appeal, so it offers great-value pricing, low running costs and the brand’s trademark five-year warranty.

Has the i10 done enough to take the spoils? To find out, we’ve pitched the new model against our current city car champ: the Skoda Citigo. This is practical and great to drive, and still sets the standard for refinement and comfort.

Better still, it’s currently available with enticing finance deals from as little as £69 a month. We’ve also brought along the Fiat Panda. It’s not as accomplished as the Skoda, but it’s full of Latin charm, looks great, is cleverly packaged and is bursting with character.

Adding to the Panda’s appeal are numerous personalisation options and an eager driving experience. So, which of our small cars can deliver the biggest blow in what promises to be one of the most closely fought tests of the year?

Head-to-head

In-car tech ALL three of our cars are available with the sort of hi-tech kit you’d expect only on much bigger models. The Hyundai gets a USB port as standard, while the £175 Connectivity Pack adds Bluetooth and voice recognition. You’ll pay £265 for this on the Panda, plus £50 for a dock for a portable TomTom sat-nav. Best of all is the Skoda’s £275 Portable Information Device (below), which includes sat-nav, Bluetooth and an in-depth trip computer.

Running costs

Of our three city cars, the Skoda and Hyundai are easiest on your wallet. They cost £20 a year in road tax and claim fuel returns of nearly 50mpg. Plus, the Citigo will retain 46.6 per cent of its value over three years.

Practicality

Given their dinky dimensions, all three of our contenders are surprisingly practical. Yet it’s the Hyundai that steals a march in the space race. Rear passengers get a little more legroom than those in the Skoda, plus there are three seatbelts in the back – the Citigo and Panda have to make do with two. The i10 also has the biggest boot, at 252 litres – 37 litres more than the Panda’s. All three cars get a folding rear bench, but you’ll pay £50 for a split-fold function on the Fiat.

1st place - Skoda

The competition is getting closer, but the Skoda is still the top city car choice. While it’s not quite as spacious as the Hyundai, it’s just as well equipped and cheaper to run. Overall, the brilliant driving experience gives the Citigo the edge, and the current £69 per month finance deal makes it even more appealing.

2nd place - Hyundai

It's second place for the Hyundai, as it misses out on victory by the narrowest of margins. It looks good, is practical, has a classy interior and comes with plenty of kit. Plus, it’s backed by a great warranty and won’t cost very much to run. We just wish the driving experience had a little more sparkle.

3rd place - Fiat

Resisting the Fiat’s cheeky character is difficult – and in isolation the Panda impresses. Not only does it look great, it also features a comfortable ride and stylishly appointed cabin. But it costs more to buy and run than rivals, while its 1.2-litre engine is off the pace in both performance and efficiency.

Skoda Citigo  Hyundai  Fiat Panda 
1.0 SE i10 1.0 SE 1.2 Easy
On-the-road price/total as tested £9,230/£9,230 £9,295/£9,925 £9,745/£11,345
Residual value (after 3yrs/30,000) £4,301/46.6% £4,146/44.6% £4,161/42.7%
Depreciation £4,929 £5,149 £5,584
Annual tax liability std/higher rate £239/£477 £240/£480 £310/£621
Annual fuel cost (12k/20k miles) £1,486/£2,476 £1,782/£2,970 £1,796/£2,993
Ins. group/quote/road tax band/cost 1/£251/B/£20 1/£309/B/£20 4/£261/C/£30
Cost of 1st/2nd/3rd service £529 (3yrs) £349 (3yrs) £209/£303/£209
Length/wheelbase 3,563/2,420mm 3,665/2,385mm 3,653/2,300mm
Height/width 1,478/1,645mm 1,500/1,660mm 1,551/1,643mm
Engine 3cyl in-line /999cc 3cyl in-line/998cc 4cyl in-line/1,242cc
Peak power  59/5,000 bhp/rpm 66/5,500 bhp/rpm 68/5,500 bhp/rpm
Peak torque  95/3,000 Nm/rpm 95/3,500 Nm/rpm 102/3,000 Nm/rpm
Transmission  5-spd man/fwd 5-spd man/fwd 5-spd man/fwd
Fuel tank capacity/spare wheel 35 litres/sealant 40 litres/sealant 37 litres/sealant
Boot capacity (seats up/down)  251/959 litres 252/1,046 litres 225/870 litres
Kerbweight/payload/towing weight 854/436kg/N/A 933/487kg/N/A 1,015/440/800kg
Turning circle/drag coefficient 9.8 metres/0.33Cd 9.6 metres/0.31Cd 9.3 metres/0.32Cd
Basic warranty (miles)/recovery 3yrs (60,000)/3yrs  5yrs (unlimited)/5yrs 3yrs (100,000)/1yr
Service intervals/UK dealers 10,000 miles (1yr)/136 10,000 miles (1yr)/162 18,000 miles (2yr)/160
Driver Power manufacturer/dealer pos. 2nd/7th 14th/20th 30th/28th
Euro NCAP: Adult/child/ped./stars 89/80/46/5 N/A 82/63/49/4
0-60/30-70mph 12.7/13.4 secs 14.1/15.6 secs 13.4/14.2 secs
30-50mph in 3rd/4th  7.2/11.7 secs 7.1/12.0 secs 7.3/10.6 secs
50-70mph in 5th  18.8 secs 19.4 secs 20.7 secs
Top speed/rpm at 70mph  99mph/3,200rpm 96mph/3,250rpm 102mph/3,100rpm
Braking 70-0/60-0/30-0mph  48.3/35.2/8.7m 52.7/38.8/9.6m 51.8/38.6/9.4m
Noise levels outside/idle/30/70mph 65/52/60/68dB 70/40/64/73dB 61/43/64/73dB
Auto Express econ (mpg/mpl)/range 48.1/10.6/370 miles 40.1/8.8/353 miles 39.8/8.8/324 miles
Govt urban/extra-urban/combined  50.4/72.4/62.8mpg 47.1/70.6/60.1mpg 42.2/65.7/54.3mpg
Govt urban/extra-urban/combined  11.1/15.9/13.8mpl 10.4/15.5/13.2mpl 9.3/14.5/11.9mpl
Actual/claimed CO2/tax bracket 136/105g/km/13% 163/108g/km/13% 164/120g/km/16%
Airbags/Isofix/rear parking sensors Four/yes/£310^ Six/yes/£195 Four/yes/£250
Air-con/leather st wheel/heated seats Yes/£180/£300 Yes/no/no Yes/£105/£250
Automatic box/stability/cruise control £665/yes/£310^ No/yes/£50 £750/£315/no
Metallic paint/xenon lights/keyless go £490/no/no £455/no/no £460/no/no
Sat-nav/USB connection/Bluetooth £275^/no/£275^ No/yes/£175 DFO/£450^/£265^

Disqus - noscript

Nicely deserved with for the Citigo. Now we just await all the anti-VW Group moaning minnies.

I really like the Citigo- Mii-Up triplets but if you opt for the Skoda or the Seat you don't get much in the way of interior trim options. For tht alone I would pay a bit more for the Up.

I was just gonna write the same thing!

Someone has to deflate the propaganda coming from the VW Group stormtroopers! However without personal experience of any of these vehicles, yet alone all of them, any comments of mine would be wrong. Hope the same can be said of those who do actually comment.

The biggest VW stormtrooper is this magazine as I and many other posters are well aware! The interesting thing is with this test, the i10 actually achieved the same 5 star rating as the sh1tigo which can been seen in the print copy!

What a stupid comment. The Citigo is by far the most fun to drive and the better car. get over your VW group prejudice.

'by far the most fun to drive and better car'. Can you not read? I have pointed out above that in this test the i10 achieved a 5 star rating like Skoda. So the little Czech box is obviously not any better than the i10. Get over your fixation with boring unreliable VAG products!

How is it that the new car of the year loses out to a car which is already in the market for some time? How on earth did it get car of the year in the first place?

It is What Car mags city car of the year, not AEs. What Car are paid by hyundai/kia in advertising to keep them sweet.....

Various magazines have their "sweetheart" manufacturers. Best to read all reviews as being "for amusement only".

Same thing happens in Australia,the VW group haters.Here we have a strong loyalty to the Japanese and now the Korean brands because of their reliability and cheapness to buy and own.We only get the Up and it sells a tenth of the numbers of the other brands even though it's competitive on price.

There's no denying that the Citigo/up!/Mii trio are still the best citycars out there. Shallowness by some who choose the looks of a car before its practicality and refinement etc will no doubt argue that though.

'Overall, the brilliant driving experience gives the Citigo the edge' There, the Citigo IS the better car.

AEX 1,341
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