Hyundai has now launched the Grand i10 Nios as its fourth hatchback offering across its product lineup. Below is an exhaustive review of the Nios to let you know about how it looks, the way it drives and should you buy one.
Indian automotive scene has seen a radical transition of customer base towards the SUVs but the hatchbacks still contribute to an important 48% share in the automotive sales of the country. Hyundai seems to have gone through this fact at least 4 times. As they went on to add another hatchback in their model lineup making it the 4th hatchback offering from the manufacturer. Hyundai has tasted success with almost all of its hatchback offerings, the Santro, i20, and the Grand i10, and eventually making it a tough task for the manufacturer to fill the gap between the lesser Grand i10 and the posher i20. With some time and evolutionary design process, Hyundai introduced the Grand i10 Nios to the market to fill the void and spoil the Indians with a wider array of hatchback options. The 'Nios' suffix means there’s more to it than just being the Grand i10. To check on how well Hyundai has justified the word ‘Nios’ with this car, read our Hyundai Grand i10 Nios review below-.
The Nios is a handsome car with the right amount of curves, lines, and creases. The design is pleasing and might hardly come up to anyone as a reason to not consider this car. With a similar silhouette as of the older Grand i10, Nios’s design is the best form of evolution over revolution. The car has grown in size, thanks to the new bumpers and increased wheelbase. It tapes itself at 3,805 mm in length and 1,680 mm in width which is an increment of 40mm in length and 20 mm in width over the Grand i10. The height is the same for both cars, but the Nios now get a 25mm increase in the wheelbase over the last generation Grand i10. Hyundai has incorporated the Nios suffix well in terms of dimensions and exterior design.
The i10 badge has always been placed on a handsome and funky hatchback from the Hyundai and the tradition continues here. With a sensuous theme to the front, the Nios has the best interpretation of Hyundai’s newest design language which is all about the big-wide cascading grille. The cascading grille here houses the boomerang-shaped LED DRLs and gives the front end a very distinctive look. The grill on our test car was finished in black color but the cars with white and silver paint scheme will wear a silver finish on the front grille. The headlamps on the Nios are most stylish ever seen on an i10. The swept-back unit comes equipped with projectors and are blacked out on inside to add on the sense of sportiness. While the last generation of the Grand i10 had subtle triangle-shaped headlamps these seem to be inspired by the 2nd generation of the i10. The lighting department on the front end is further complemented by the project foglamps sitting in the creased-out black housing in the front bumper. The front is designed gracefully and does stand out as the best-designed face on the Hyundai since the upcoming ones are adopting a completely different plot altogether.
The front face is refreshing and has a charm of Hyundai's old fluidic lines.
The Nios hints a similar silhouette as the older Grand i10 from the sides, but the overall profile of the car is very new and refreshing. With the 40mm extra length and 25mm longer wheelbase over the Grand i10, Nios is longer and has better-proportionated side profile. The sides of the car have a few clever styling elements to it like the 15” diamond-cut dual-tone alloy wheels, blacked-out B and C pillar to boast the floating roof design and roof rails. The C-pillar also sees a G-i10 plaque summing up the attention to detail that Hyundai has put in.
With blackened B and C pillar, and G i10 plaque, Hyundai has given it a floating roof appearance.
The first look at Nios speaks that it has been designed around an aesthetic theme, but the sensuousness we talked about earlier gets diluted while you move to the rear-end. The tailgate is very plain, to say the least, and the small tail lamps further project the visual bulk of smooth sheet metal. The rear of the Nios could have done with more creases and curves, while the tail-lamps could have made use of LED elements. The reflectors and registration plates are housed on the neatly crafted bumper, a nice touch though. To reduce the visual heft there’s also a scuff plate resembling diffuser lower down the bumper.
Rear face is the most silent profile of the car and has place to work on for the future facelifts.
Hyundai Grand i10 Nios Interior
Hyundai has been known for its plush and ergonomically designed interiors and the case is similar here with the Nios too. The interiors of the cars are done in a shade of grey and black. The color tones are on a Lil lighter side making it hard for anyone to feel claustrophobic here. The greenhouse area is fairly large too letting a lot of light enter the cabin while the extended length of 40mm and 15mm width has increased the space on the inside. On a long trip, 4 average-sized adults would an easy fit in the car while 3 people siting abreast on the rear bench would surely be a tight fit. The 60:40 split rear seats here do offer increased headroom, legroom and shoulder room than the Swift, though Nios is smaller in terms of overall dimensions. The front seats, on the other hand, are well-bolstered and supportive and space is in line with the cars Nios will compete with. With all seats up the boot space is measured at 260 liters, a 6-liter increment over the previous Grand i10.
The interiors are design in a shade of black and grey, the plastics are hard but Hyundai has soften the touch points
The view from the driver design is rather cohesive with a neatly laid out dashboard and instrument cluster. The instrument cluster is a combination of a digital readout for the speedo and an analog tachometer. The sight through the leather-wrapped steering wheel surely feels better than the competition. The housing for the instrument binnacle extends out to house the floating infotainment screen just like the Kia Seltos or latest Mercedes-Benz cars. That said, the high set dashboard is intuitive but also intrusive for drivers with short height. The oval-shaped AC vents on the center console are placed right above their controls and there’s a storage cubby beneath this setup that can wirelessly charge your phone. Vents on the sides are circular and to our surprise they were damped, which again delineate the attention to detail Hyundai has brought in.
Boot volume is now up by 6 litres, and offer a total of 260 litres of cargo volume.
There’s ample storage space on the car’s dashboard with a fairly decent-sized glovebox and some space above it to keep the phone or wallet. The overall cabin is not dull by any extent, as the hexagonal texture is followed on the inside in combination of different finish for the plastic surface to break the monotony. The fit and finish levels surpass the expectation anyone would have from a car of this segment. Hyundai has somehow made the touchpoints softer with the use of hard plastics all around, which is appreciated.
Hyundai Grand i10 Nios Features & Convenience
Hyundai brochures have always had a long list of features and the length isn’t shorter here by any means. For small hatchback standards, the Nios comes loaded to limits with features like 5.6” digital display for the speedometer, USB fast charging, power sockets for the rear seats, rear AC vents with blower controls and an 8” touch screen for the ICE. Nios also gets a hue of another segment-first feature like the Eco Coating technology to keep the air fresh and purified inside the cabin. While Nios does not get the BlueLink app connectivity or the connected car features like the Venue but it gets the assistance of I-Blue smartphone-app to offer a range of basic connectivity features.
The instrument cluster merges with the centrally mounted infotainment screen in a Mercedes fashion, while the cubby space below the AC control is the place to wirelessly charge your phone.
Nios is a well sought out car in terms of the driver as well as passenger convenience and gets the extended benefit of a cooled glovebox, rake adjust for steering and height-adjustable driver seat.
The safety kit is the most crucial aspect for any car since every penny paid counts on this front. To take the safety quotient northwards, Nios comes equipped with dual-front airbags, ABS with EBD assistance, Rear parking camera with sensors, seat belt reminders for the front seat occupants, and speed warning alerts. To curb the confusion, this safety kit is standard across the range, only the parking camera is optional. The passive safety net isn’t of any good if the chassis isn’t beefy, and to keep the worries away, Hyundai has confirmed that the composition for the monocoque construction is on par with the use of advanced high strength steel.
Hyundai Grand i10 Nios Review - Performance
The Nios does with the same engines as on the Grand i10, only the petrol gets a BS-6 upgrade. Both petrol and diesel engines displace 1200 cubic centimetre while the power figures for them are different. The petrol unit produces 83ps and 114nm and the diesel mill produces 75hp and 190nm as their maximum rated output. To let you folks know, these powers figures are in line with the competition, alias Maruti Suzuki Swift. The transmission duties are taken care of by either a 5-speed manual or a 5-speed AMT.
Engine & Gearbox
1.2L Kappa Petrol
83PS at 6000RPM
114NM at 4000RPM
1.2L U2 CRDi Diesel
75PS at 4000RPM
190NM at 1750-2250RPM
On paper, these engines sound capable, but that is only the case around the city limits, on the highways, anything beyond 100kmph is a task. Not impossible, but requires patience for the sluggish top-end the way it sounds there.
The 1.2L couple is perfect for a city runabout, triple digit overtakes require fast gearshift maneuvers.
Starting with the petrol mill, the power figures are nowhere close to bringing a giggling smile on your face, neither by a readout nor by a tap on the accelerator pedal. The power band on the petrol mill is flat is tuned more for the city runabouts. Our test unit was a manual, and clutch action plus the shift operations were surprisingly smooth. It helped in shifting faster as it was required for the fast overtaking maneuvers on the highways. The petrol engine is rolled out in BS-6 state of tune and in comparison to the older BS-4 mill, it feels a bit consumed, and is far away from being a mile-muncher.
The diesel with its extra torque is still a better choice if highways are where you'll spend most your time on.
The diesel test car was equipped with an AMT instead; yes it reduced a pedal and a lot of work. The diesel engine is clattery, and clatter protrudes inside the cabin at any given RPM but is not something that would affect your decision. Once the revs build up the clatter isn’t annoying, and driving it right after the petrol, things here feel much sorted. The AMT does its job quite beautifully with no head in the seat shifts, but a prod on the A pedal lets it downshift and it pulls. Drivability is far better in comparison to the petrol counterpart, the extra torque than petrol is to be credited. On highways, this engine also is nothing phenomenal and triple-digit overtakes require efforts. The time gap between the shifts further disturbs the things, taking over the controls manually on the AMT does help. Hyundai has decided to go on with the BS-4 compliance for the diesel as of now and has plans to introduce the BS-6 compliant unit at a later stage. This would help Hyundai take a lead over the Maruti Swift, as Maruti has plans to stop producing the diesel cars.
Ride And Handling
The Grand i10 has one dead steering, which never inspired confidence but the things here are a lot better. The Nios's steering is responsive, still not as direct as for an enthusiast’s liking, but gets the job done better now. With McPherson strut based independent setup with coil springs at the front and coupled torsion beam axle at the rear, Nios is differently sprung for the petrol and diesel engine. Hyundai claims that the car has been sprung with a focus on city roads, thus a big no to it as a driver’s car. The petrol car is lighter sprung and that brings back the charm of wallowing capabilities from the older Hyundai’s. The ride on the rear is bouncy with vertical movements and with a tighter suspension that could be a fix since we believe the coil springs do their job perfectly, the dampers don’t.
The petrol is stiffer sprung than the diesel, latter offers a pliant ride and takes bumps with flair.
The diesel Nios is tighter sprung and the difference is pretty obvious with every pothole or the road undulation you hit. The car absorbs bump with much flair and this added stiffness aids in the overall dynamics of the car. It handles better than the petrol Nios and is pliant at higher speeds. But, this is still nowhere in line with the Ford Figo.
The Grand i10 Nios prices start at 5.0 Lac INR for the entry-level petrol variant and 6.70 Lac INR for the mid-spec diesel, going all the way up to 7.14 Lacs INR and 7.99 Lacs INR for the petrol top-end and diesel top-end respectively.
The Nios is an absolute VFM car, looks stylish and should be considered if highways cruises are occasional on the list.y cruise the highways.
The price tag of the Nios surely cuts the Maruti Suzuki Swift and Ford Figo by slight a margin, but Hyundai will be selling the last generation Grand i10 with only petrol engine alongside the Nios and that creates a sense of confusion. While the Nios stands out to be the VFM cardholder here, it also draws attention as one aesthetically crafted car. It looks appealing on the outside; convenient on the inside thus makes up the best bet for the city runabouts if driving spiritedly isn’t your taste. The Swift is better handling car and is a direct competition to the Nios but it lacks the tires it deserves, while overall build quality is also better here on the Nios. So we believe this would help you with your decision of buying the Hyundai’s Grand i10 Nios.