Review: Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014)


Cheap to own. All models have airc on, five seatbelts and flat folding rear seats. Rides and handles quite well for its size. 99g/km Blue model from early 2011.

1.1-litre best avoided. Achilles heel is rapidly corroding and otherwise failing brakes.

Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014): At A Glance

Fun to drive, cheap to run and attractive to the eye, the i10 was a huge step forward for Hyundai. Demand exceeded supply by more than 50 per cent as the public became i10 converts.

The 1.1-litre engine romps along quite respectably on the motorway, and despite low gearing of 20mph per 1000rpm in 5th, it isn’t too noisy. The steering is decently direct, doesn’t wander or give you that eerie feeling the car is about to fall over on long sweeping bends. The i10 actually handles very well considering the upright torsos inside are not ideal for its centre of gravity. 

There’s plenty of headroom and legroom in the back, easily accessed by decent sized rear doors. Luggage capacity, all seats fully occupied, is a sensible 258 litres. The rear seats fold down to provide a much better load platform than the standard Panda and C1 clones. There’s a space saver spare under the floor rather than a can of glop that can’t fix a blowout. And the i10’s relatively long wheelbase gives decent ride quality. 


Hyundai I 10 2

Hyundai i10 1.1 2008 Road Test

Hyundai i10 1.2 2008 Road Test and Video

Hyundai i10 Blue 2011 Road Test and Video

What does a Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014) cost?

List Price from £10,025
Buy new from £8,971
Contract hire from £130.16 per month

Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014): What's It Like Inside?

Length 3565 mm
Width 1595 mm
Height 1540 mm
Wheelbase 2380 mm

Full specifications

There's plenty of headroom and legroom in the back, easily accessed by decent sized rear doors. Luggage capacity, all seats fully occupied, is a sensible 258 litres. The rear seats fold down to provide a much better load platform than the standard Panda and C1 clones. There's a space saver spare under the floor rather than a can of glop that can't fix a blowout. And the i10's relatively long wheelbase gives decent ride quality.

It's even decently trimmed inside, with no bare metal or screwheads reminding you how little you paid for the car.

Standard specification - i10 Classic

* Air conditioning
* 14" steel wheels
* Electric windows (front)
* Coloured keyed bumpers
* Central locking (with tailgate unlock/lock)
* Four airbags with passenger side cut off switch
* Stereo with CD, MP3 compatibility, aux in port and 6 speakers

Standard specification - i10 Comfort

As Classic, plus:

* Electric windows (front & rear)
* Coloured keyed outside handles and wing mirrors
* Remote control central locking
* Height adjustable driver's seat
* Underfloor luggage box
* 14" alloy wheels

Standard specification - i10 Style

As Comfort, plus:

* 15" alloy wheels
* Heated front seats
* Metal grain fascia
* Metal painted interior handles
* Rear roof Spoiler
* Electric Sunroof

Child seats that fit a Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

Which car seat will suit you?

What's the Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014) like to drive?

I really liked the original Hyundai i10 1.1 when I tested it. And so, it seems, did everyone else. Demand exceeded supply by more than 50% and, after expecting to sell 7000 in its first year, by October 2008 Hyundai had already sold 11,000.

The main problem was supply of the 1.1 engines. Happily now solved by the advent of the all-new alloy block, chain-cam 1.2 Kappa engine.

This eager little engine delivers more power and torque and more performance, yet emits slightly less CO2. 

Astonishingly, this tiny car is actually a full-five seater, with five proper lap/diagonal seatbelts. There's plenty of headroom in the back. And the rear cushions fold forward so the 60/40 seatbacks can be folded to leave a flat luggage deck.

Underneath the rearmost section there's a 6-inch deep modular tray. And under that, a space-saver spare wheel.

It somehow conspires to out-Panda a Panda, offering quite strong acceleration at low speeds and astonishing handling for something so small and tall. It gets a bit flat on the motorway, but the reason for that is its sensibly long gearing in 5th of around 23mph per 1000rpm, which means it's no buzzbox, only pulling around 3000rpm at 70.

The benefits don't end there. Everything seems to have been thought of including a passenger airbag keyswitch, ISOFIX childseat tethers for the outer rears. Even the rear windows wind right down into the doors. And how many cars this size and price come with an electric sliding sunroof?

On my second day in it I found myself romping along with a grin from ear to ear. That said, it won't have escaped your attention that the price has gone up a fair bit since the March launch. The 1.2 Style and Comfort are actually £650 more than the original 1.1s. But the state the Pound is in you can hardly blame Hyundai for that.

I reckon it's the best big-little car you can buy.

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Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
1.0 67 mpg 14.8 s 99 g/km
1.1 54–59 mpg 15.6 s 114–124 g/km
1.2 51–61 mpg 12.2–13.8 s 108–129 g/km
1.2 Automatic 48 mpg 14.4 s 139 g/km

Real MPG average for a Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

28–57 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Hyundai i10 (2008 – 2014)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

What cheap to buy and insure car would you recommend for a new driver?

What car would you recommend for a new driver. I am trying to keep the insurance to a minimum and only have £1000 to £1600 to spend
A Toyota Aygo will be reliable and cheap to insure. There are loads about, too. Also consider a Hyundai i10 or Kia Picanto.
Answered by Andrew Brady
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What do owners think?

Our view gives your our opinion, based on driving hundreds of cars every year, but you can't beat the views of someone who lives with a car day-in, day out.

  • 5 star 33%
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  • 3 star 17%
  • 2 star 17%
  • 1 star

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