Last year, Hyundai launched the all-new Hyundai Grand i10 NIOS, a sporty-looking hatchback to take on the likes of Maruti Suzuki Swift. The brand’s first car in the year 2020 is a sedan based on the Grand i10 NIOS. The all-new sub-4m Aura sedan will take on the likes of Maruti Dzire. The Dzire became extremely popular last year to become India’s best-selling car for a few months. Is the all-new Hyundai Aura good enough to take on the Dzire head-on? We drove the car in Indore, Madhya Pradesh and this is what we think about the all-new Aura.
Does the Aura look smashing?
Looks of a vehicle have always been a subjective topic. The Hyundai Aura is a sedan form of the Grand i10 NIOS and you would not miss that part easily. The all-new Hyundai Aura’s front-end looks identical to the Grand i10. It gets a slightly different bumper and grille elements but the overall design of both the vehicle remain similar.
The Aura looks very sporty from the front with the hexagonal grille and boomerang-shaped LED DRLs positioned on the corners. The aggressive design of the Aura turns a lot of heads on the roads and we did experience the same during our media drive. Since we drove the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine unit of the Aura, it also had a “Turbo” badge in red colour positioned on the front grille.
On the side, the Hyundai Aura offers window line and roofline that are similar to the Grand i10 NIOS. Well, that’s where the Hyundai Aura’s design may look a bit out of place to many. The high roofline that suddenly dips to meet the boot of the car makes the design of the Aura a bit different from the other cars present in the segment. However, the 15-inch alloy wheels on the Aura’s top-end variants will grab all your attention on the road. The busy looking alloy wheels are simply the sportiest alloy wheels that we have seen in the segment. Of course, the car is aimed at the young buyers and such design elements do help.
At the rear, the Aura feels overloaded with elements. There are elongated split headlamps, a chrome stripe, a layered bumper and a spoiler integrated to the boot. The tail lamps look brilliant in the night. However, during the day, it may look overdone. But this is the sporty design that Hyundai wants to offer in the segment.
How is the cabin?
The Hyundai Aura offers two cabin tones. There is a simpler Beige dual-tone cabin that is available with the 1.2-litre petrol and the 1.4-litre diesel engine units. The 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol variants get the sporty-looking all-black interior with red highlights. It looks very aggressive and will attract a lot of young buyers, something that Hyundai plans to do.
The Aura gets a long list of first-in-segment features. It includes wireless charger, rearview monitor, eco coating on the AC, projector fog lamps and more. There are other regular features like cruise control, cooled glove box, 8.0-inch infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, rear AC vent and more. However, since we were driving the Turbocharged 1.0 petrol variant, the features like cruise control and driver rearview monitor were missing from it.
The cabin is overall comfortable and offers ample of space. But Hyundai does not provide an armrest in the front, even with the top-end variant. A feature that we think should have been available in the car. There is a 5.3-inch monochrome screen on the instrument cluster and it feels like a nice touch to the cabin to further accentuate its sportiness.
At the rear, the large windows add to the large cabin feeling. There is also ample leg space and knee room in the car and three passengers can fit comfortably for shorter distances. There is an armrest with cup holders in the rear. Also, the rear AC vents and a 12V socket will make the life of the rear passengers more comfortable.
How is Aura to drive?
There are three engine options available with the Hyundai Aura. The 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol and the 1.4-litre diesel engines are carried over from the Xcent. However, the new option available with the car is the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that comes from the Hyundai Venue. It is the most powerful engine of the three and produces a maximum of 100 PS and peak torque of 172 Nm. Since this is the new engine in the segment from Hyundai, we spent our time experiencing it. It is offered only with a five-speed manual transmission and there is no automatic with this engine option.
The three-cylinder 1.0-litre engine is extremely well-tuned to suit the city traffic as well as the highways. It is a rev-friendly engine and asks to be driven enthusiastically. We did exactly that during our 70 km drive with the car. There is almost no turbo-lag in the engine and it behaves perfectly in the city traffic. In fact, if you lift off your foot slowly from the clutch pedal, it starts moving forward, similar to the diesel engines. The Aura is lightweight, which makes driving the 1.0-litre turbocharged variant even more fun. The car can do 0-100 km/h below 10 seconds. But it speeds higher than 120 km/h, you may feel the lightweight of the car on the highways.
We drove pretty enthusiastically on the highways and city traffic and by the end of the drive, the display showed 17 km/l figure, which is not very far away from the claimed 20.5 km/l of the turbocharged variant. The steering wheel feels light inside the city traffic and gets weighed up beautifully on the highways. You will feel confident while overtaking other vehicles on the roads. It has ample power to do so but at very high speeds, you may feel otherwise.
A complete package?
The Aura is priced at Rs 5.8 lakh and offers a lot of new features. However, some may find that it looks extra-sporty but that’s something Hyundai has done on purpose to attract the young buyers. Apart from a few missing features like the front armrest, we feel that Hyundai Aura can bite a big chunk in the segment in the coming times. It offers a complete package for the young and the engine options like 1.2-litre petrol and 1.4-litre diesel will cater to the larger segment of the crowd. If you’re out shopping and want a family car that looks sporty, the Aura is something that you should consider seriously.