Next-generation, 2020 Hyundai Elite i20 to go turbo petrol: Maruti Baleno RS in its sights?

Hyundai India has already begun testing the all-new, 2nd generation Elite i20 premium hatchback. The car is the third generation model in the i20 line-up globally. It will be launched in India. At the recently held launch event of the Hyundai Grand i10 NIOS, we got to know a few new things about the automaker’s plans for the upcoming, all-new i20. Top Hyundai officials at the event hinted that the all-new i20 could get a 1 liter-3 cylinder turbocharged petrol engine. This is the same motor that’s offered on the Venue compact SUV – Hyundai’s first turbo petrol car in India. This engine makes 118 Bhp of peak power and 172 Nm of peak torque in the Venue but could be offered in a slightly detuned state in the 2020 i20. This engine will make the 2020 Hyundai i20 a direct competitor of the Maruti Baleno RS, which is also offered with a 1 liter, triple cylinder turbo petrol motor with 101 Bhp-150 Nm.

Next-generation, 2020 Hyundai Elite i20 to go turbo petrol: Maruti Baleno RS in its sights?
CarToq’s speculative render of the 2020 Hyundai Elite i20

The 1 liter turbo petrol engine offered on the Venue gets 6 speed manual and 7 speed twin clutch automatic gearbox options. This is a similar combination that the 2nd generation (current) Elite i20 gets in international markets. The same combination is likely to be offered on the 3rd generation i20 sold in the Indian market. Apart from the turbo petrol engine, the new i20 is also expected to get a 1.5 liter turbocharged diesel engine, which has just made its Indian debut on the Kia Seltos SUV. This diesel engine is Bharat Stage 6 (BS6) emission norms compliant, and is likely to replace both the 1.4 liter and 1.6 liter turbo diesel engines that Hyundai offers on its cars presently. The 1.5 liter turbo diesel engine will make it to the Hyundai Venue as well, next year. The diesel engine will be offered with a 6 speed manual gearbox as standard on both the new i20 and the Venue.

The all-new i20 will get a fresh design, which will give it a total refresh in terms of looks, both on the outside and inside. The car could get slightly larger, in keeping with the trend among premium hatchbacks, which seem to get larger with every passing generation. Hyundai does have a high performance division called N, or Namyang. However, the South Korean automaker has never launched any N-badged high performance car in the Indian market although it sells a range of such cars abroad including the Hyundai i20 N. Adding the 1 liter turbo petrol engine and the 7 speed twin clutch automatic gearbox will make the new i20 a lot quicker than the current version. But will it be as good as the current version of the N-badged i20 that’s sold abroad? Well, this is something that’s not likely as Hyundai will continue to sell the i20 as a mass market hatchback, aimed at family car buyers, rather than a hot hatchback meriting the N=badge.