Parkers overall rating: 4.2 out of 5 4.2
  • Premium design with good layout
  • Excellent infotainment
  • Plastics feel hard and unyielding throughout

How is the quality and layout?

The i10’s interior looks more expensive than it is, thanks to clever use of textured plastics and glossy elements. While all the surfaces are all hardwearing rather than plush, most of the bits you touch – particularly the wheel and gearknob – are high-quality and comfortable to operate. Build quality is also very good.

The design is attractive and mature for a city car, with little of the contrived ‘cute’ or ‘funky’ detailing you’ll find in some rivals, such as the Smart Forfour. This is best embodied at the top of the dashboard, which features a large enclosure covering both the dials and the infotainment screen.

It doesn’t look a million miles away from the dashtop of the latest Mercedes models – albeit with traditional gauges instead of a high-tech digital display.

Lower down on the dash, you’ll find an easy-to-use ventilation controls above a small shelf. On top-end trim levels, this contains a wireless smartphone charging pad, but on all models it also features the USB and 12V charging sockets.

It’s a busier dashboard than the minimalist simplicity you’d find in a Volkswagen Up, but all the controls are intuitive.

Sportier N Line cars benefit from a branded steering wheel, which also felt nicer to hold, and a gearknob similar in design to the sporty i30 N.

You'll also be treated to red seat stitching on the seats and steering wheel for these cars, but the liberal use of dark material everywhere else means it can feel a little dull and claustrophobic.

As a result, some may prefer the Premium when it comes to cabin ambience. The two-tone interior really brightens up the dash and door trims, accentuating the textured plastics and making it easier on the eye.

It’s churlish to complain about the quality of the plastics, but the quality of the seat upholstery is another matter – it felt cheap indeed to us, despite our test model being the range-topping Premium.

Infotainment and tech

You can add an optional Tech Pack, which brings that wireless smartphone charger along with Bluelink app connectivity and live navigation. This connects the infotainment system up to the outside world – bringing live traffic and weather updates as well as information on petrol pricing, parking and points of interest.

In addition, owners can install a Bluelink app on their smartphone to remotely control some of the car’s functions. It’s able to lock and unlock the doors, honk the horn or flash the lights, as well as locate where the car was parked and track servicing and maintenance requirements.

Is it comfortable?

  • Lots of adjustment in driving position
  • Ample space for all occupants
  • Supple ride even on largest wheels

Hyundai i10 comfort levels are high considering it’s such a small car. It’s easy to get a good driving position with lots of adjustment in the driver’s seat and steering wheel – though, for us, the wheel didn’t telescope out quite far enough to be spot on. All passengers enjoy soft and comfortable seats with loads of room for a city car.

Even more surprisingly, the rear windows roll down all the way – a stark contrast to most rivals, which either utilise pokey pop-out rear windows or else wind halfway down and stop. It’s a thoroughly pleasant place to be, considering it’s the rear seat of a city car.

The ventilation system is quite weak, but also typical in a car of this size. We found ourselves having to set the fan on the higher speed settings in order for it to be strong enough up front, so on a hot summer's day with four people on board, it might take a while to feel the cooling effect of the air-conditioning - likewise the heat in winter.

The i10 rides well over most surfaces and only larger bumps unsettle it. It doesn’t feel quite as supple and planted as the Volkswagen Up, but it’s a close-run thing.

N Line spec cars get different suspension, aimed at improving cornering ability. You can read more about whether it makes a difference to performance in the driving section (it does), but in terms of comfort, it is noticeably less comfortable.

It's stiffer, therefore less good at absorbing bumps. It's not concerningly harsh, but over poor roads N Line cars bump harder into potholes than other models. It's not as firm as the Volkswagen Up GTI, and isn't all that noticeable on good quality roads. But if you regularly tread along Britain's broken A-roads, it's worth remembering.