Parkers overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 3.5

Buyers can choose from two 1.6-litre engines in the i30 – one petrol and one diesel. Hyundai i30 Estate performance is adequate but not stunning. The 113bhp diesel offers decent performance, with good pulling power from low down which makes overtaking a breeze, plus the gearchange is slick and allows smooth progress. The 124bhp petrol version is quiet enough but feels lacklustre alongside the diesel and struggles when packed with passengers and luggage, so most people will prefer the lure of the diesel’s punch and fuel economy.

There isn’t much to choose in terms of the benchmark 0-62mph time – all manual i30 estate models will cover it less than 12 seconds. The four-speed automatic, available with both engines, feels less energetic. At the beginning of 2010 an Intelligent Stop & Go system (or ISG for short) was made available as an optional extra on all manual models. This cuts the engine when the car is stationary, for instance in traffic, before restarting it automatically when required.

The result is an improvement in fuel economy of up to 14 per cent.

The i30 Estate is safe and predictable on the road but is more workmanlike rather than engaging. It allows confident cornering with a decent level of grip and good body control, plus it turns in neatly and precisely. However, there are few thrills to be had and there isn’t much sense of the car’s behaviour through the steering wheel. But overall the i30 Estate is comfortable and combines composed on-road performance with a smooth ride, making it ideal for long motorway trips.