19 February 2009

Out with the old

Hyundai plans to get rid of the old SUVs in favour of this. Which is good

Hyundai ix-onic

Something funky’s going on at Hyundai. Just look what they’ve gone and made for the Geneva show: this ix-onic concept. Sounds like some sort of sports drink, doesn’t it? Except Hyundai suggest you pronounce it ‘ik-sonnik’. Which makes it sound like a cheap stereo.
 
Anyway, it’s a concept for the company’s next SUV and it’s packed with lots of cool stuff. Power comes from a 1.6-litre diesel, which produces a very respectable 170bhp. It’s also got stop-start tech, which combines with the diesel to keep CO2 emissions down to 149g/km – not bad for a heavyish SUV (there’s a bit of a theme with that today – check out the Lexus RX 450h we told you about earlier).
 
It gets a DSG-style double-clutch gearbox too and even has four-wheel-drive. So it’s an SUV with a decent bit of ‘S’ and ‘U’ for a change. And it looks good – much cooler than the podgy Tucson and Santa Fe. Expect to see some of the design touches on other Hyundai’s in future, too. Things like that hexagonal grille and neatly sculpted surfaces.
 
It’s easily the best-looking Hyundai since, er, forever. And if that’s not enough, Hyundai fans, you’re in luck, as the company have also launched a 3-door i20. Which looks exactly the same as the 5-door, only shorter.

That’s no bad thing, as it’s a pretty cute little thing. But, despite being £450 cheaper than the one with more doors, it still can’t touch the Fiesta for value…

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