Hyundai Grand i10 NIOS Turbo Road Test Review – With power comes responsibility?

The i10 brand name has been a household name from Hyundai for Indian car buyers. The first generation i10 was introduced way back in 2007, which was very well received. 2014 saw the introduction of a grander and larger version with the Grand i10. Come 2019, Hyundai totally refreshed the Grand i10 as the Grand i10 NIOS. The Korean car maker is also going all guns blazing with the 1.0L Turbo Petrol engine which is already seen good success on the Venue, Verna, Aura and now they have plonked the little daemon of an engine on to the Grand i10 NIOS, read on to know all in this latest pocket rocket from Hyundai.

Food for thought!

Not many know this the first generation i10 also sold in Mexico as the Dodge i10 and in Malaysia as the Inokom i10. The first generation i10 was designed by renowned ex-BMW designer namely Thomas Burkl. It also shares the platform with the Kia Picanto.

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Exterior & Design

The Grand i10 NIOS Turbo looks identical like the other trims except for the special Turbo badge in red that’s placed on the front grille and the boot. On first glance appears extremely bold and stylish with loads of sporty road presence. The basic silhouette reminds one of the Grand i10 family but with loads of expressive stylish touches. The face is dominated by the massive Hyundai family grille integrated within front bumper that is very well sculpted with sharp character lines and is finished in glossy black colour. The bumper houses round projector fog lamps that are surrounded with faux air dam. The most interesting area on the front bumper happens to be the boomerang shaped LED DRL’s that are cleverly infused on the outer edges of family grille. The wraparound headlamp cluster houses projector lights and turn signal indicators.

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Coming to side profile, it is dominated with the large body coloured wing mirror with integrated LED turn signal indicator. The awesome looking 15 inch dual tone diamond-cut alloy wheels comes shod with 165/ 70 R15 tyres. Another unique highlight of the side profile is the G i10 branding on the thick blacked out C-pillar that gives the car a floating roof like effect and also gives you the feeling of the car being longer than it actually is. The rear profile highlights itself with a neatly sculpted bumper with reflectors on either side or a blacked out faux skid plate. Tailgate gets special NIOS badging that Hyundai has been giving with the Venue. The boot lid also gets a thick chrome strip running horizontally defining the opening. Another highlight of the NIOS is the blackened roof rails and the body coloured shark fin antenna.

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Interior & Safety

The Grand i10 NIOS Turbo features a dual tone dashboard with a unique wavy pattern and satin paint on crash pad, seat upholstery, door pads and also the sides of the centre console. The instrument cluster features a 5.3 inches digital speedometer along with an analog tachometer and all the telltale signs. The styling and designing is something unseen and unique it it’s class. The multi-function three spoke steering wheel comes loaded with audio controls and is leather wrapped. The steering is tilt adjustable but lacks telescopic adjustment almost like every other car in its class. However, the attention grabbing feature of the dash remains the massive 8 inch AVN colour display. It’s the latest generation unit which comes integrated with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for seamless mobile phone connectivity.

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The automatic climate control is a single zone unit with turbine design vents on the dashboard and also comes with vents for the rear passengers. Coming to the seating the Nios Turbo gets black fabric seats with unique red piping and hand stitching. Front seats get fixed integrated headrests with manual adjust available on the driver seat. The rear seats get two fixed headrests. The seats offer very good support both to the back and under thigh, extra seat bolstering also aids in a very comfortable in cabin experience.

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Leg room and headroom is pretty generous all around and so is the shoulder room. The rear seat has a flat center cushioning which should help the person sitting in the middle. The cabin is well appointed and loaded to typical Hyundai levels.

New photo by Motor World India / Google Photos

In terms of safety the Grand i10 Nios Turbo comes loaded with features like dual airbags, ABS with EBD, emergency stop signal, speed sensing door locks, rear parking camera with sensors etc.

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Engine, Transmission and Drive

Hyundai Grand i10 NIOS Turbo as the name suggests comes powered with the 1.0 Litre 3-cylinder GDI Turbo Petrol engine. This engine develops 100PS of power and 172Nm of torque. This engine gets mated to the 5-speed manual gearbox.
Not forgetting that this engine is fairly high on tech, featuring a twin stage oil pump and a clever waste-gate management for the turbo, all to improve throttle response and reduce energy losses.

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On the move, the turbo petrol motor is extremely smooth with its power delivery and rev happy engine in nature. We have fallen in love with this tiny engine right since we drove It on the Venue. This is one of the best Turbo engines currently available in its class and higher too. On the go the Nios Turbo surges ahead very strongly and you can actually feel the power surge in at as low as 1,800rpm with no signs of any lag or hesitation. After this at around 2500rpm the car feels at its sweet spot with tons of power at foot. As for refinement, this tiny engine is highly polished in levels of refinement not forgetting the sweet roar that from the motor that adds to the overall drive appeal. A special mention here goes to the five speed manual transmission that has precise and positive shift and also adds to the feel good factor. The clutch isn’t heavy either making driving the Grand i10 Nios Turbo driving in traffic a breeze.

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Ride quality is another strong point of the all-new Grand i10 NIOS and on the Turbo variant too the car shines in this department. The suspension is softly sprung and very quiet for added passenger comfort which helps keep out the unruly noises. Steering feedback is good too, as speed builds up the steering weighs up quiet well. This car is quite capable as a small family moving machine with spirited performance in most situations on weekdays and on weekends it can give you all the joys that you would desire from a Turbo engine powered car.

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Verdict

No denying the fact that the Grand i10 Nios is one feature loaded hot hatch that drives extremely well and has loads of fun factor loaded on to it with this the Turbo Petrol engine coming on to it. The Grand i10 Nios Turbo looks trendy, drives well and has all the right things going its way in an excellent package balanced with loads of fun due to its GDI engine. Would we buy it if we were looking a fun car in this segment, well our answer would be Yes we would surely go for this pocket rocket!

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Words – Ritesh Madhok
Photography & Video – Govind Gadekar

New photo by Motor World India / Google Photos

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