As an FWD car, the i30N is up against the Type R and the eighth-generation Golf GTI, both of which are phenomenal cars. But the i30N makes a name for itself with explosive driving capabilities and the looks to match.
To describe it in a nutshell, the i30 N is one heck of a fun car to drive. Expect good throttle response, great exhaust sounds, and balanced handling. Adding to this is its ability to work as a daily driver with sufficient practicality and comfort. And as mentioned, the i30N looks good, especially in the standard light baby blue colour.
The i30 N has different drive modes, each of which is adaptable to a desired output. For example, in N mode, it becomes easier to thrust forward with rapid torque, so much so that spinning the front wheels can happen without intention.
Then there’s the Sport mode, which is a slightly toned-down version of the N mode, but still does well to provide an enhanced sporty driving experience.
In Eco mode, a mode which I advise should be used for daily driving as the car can be heavy on fuel is more relaxed and reserved.
As I mentioned earlier, the i30N has balanced handling, partly due to its low centre of gravity and suspension. Going around bends at faster speeds is almost a walk in the park as I experienced little body roll. This is thanks to an electronic limited-slip differential and electronic stability control.
Because the I30 N is built for performance, you can expect a stiff suspension, which can be adjusted for more comfort in the infotainment system.
One evening as I was cruising at a speed of 80km/h, a seventh-gen Golf GTI whizzed past me. This prompted me to switch into N mode to see if I can catch up to it within speed limits. I was behind the GTI at a good following distance in about 10 seconds after the switch of a button.
I took this as a sure sign that the I30N is not to be messed with and deserves more respect. It’s more the manner in which the i30N caught up to its rival that was impressive; it was quick and the new DCT gearbox clearly makes a difference to its performance.
For its price tag, the I30 N puts itself in a position of value for money.
The new Hyundai i30 N DCT is R 749 900 (including VAT).
As part of the standard package, the customer also gets Hyundai’s seven-year/200,000 km manufacturer warranty; a five-year/75,000km service plan; and roadside assistance for seven years or 150,000km.