If you are interested in a city car that costs less than using public transport, then the Hyundai Getz is the car for you. Or the Kia Picanto, which is a Hyundai Getz with Kia written on it. And if you are not interested in a cheap and basic car for the urban jungle, then you can move on.
The Hyundai Getz is a quintessential car for 2000s Hyundai. Launched to give Hyundai a foot in the supermini door, the Hyundai Getz was pretty much the predecessor of the Hyundai i20, a much better known car to Europeans. Basically, it had to go up against VW’s Polo 9n, Ford’s Fiesta V and Opel’s Corsa C.
And how did it fare in the market?
Considering that it was one of the first Hyundai cars designed in Europe, it was a massive succes. Cheap, small, practical, reliable and economical transportation? You bet your crusty bottom that it did well. However, they had another special fanbase who bought them new, namely the elderly. Sure, it sold in droves and it appealed to the masses, but it was also extra tasty to the older among us. Built with an above average height driving position, in a Getz you practically do not go up or down – the seats are at the same level with you. Maybe this aspect is not so important for us, but remember that no one escapes arthritis except the Kardashians because they have plastic instead of bones and cartilage. And it was really cheap to buy, the cheapest Hyundai Getz costing 7128 euros including VAT, in today’s money. This put the Hyundai Getz 1000 euros away from the famous Dacia Logan, the official value-for-money chariot in Europe. Except that the Getz came with a 1.1 petrol engine and 3-door bodywork in the base version, and the Logan came with the famous 1.4 petrol with 75 horsepower which was recycled from Renault and 5 doors, but it didn’t even have power steering. And the major difference between them is that Getz could be loaded with many options far above it’s class, while Dacia was more limited than the level of intelligence of the characters from The Real Bros of Simi Valley. If on the Dacia you could option for windows and rear seats, on the Getz you could tick ABS, ESP, BlueTooth connectivity, automatic gearbox, front electric windows, sunroof or side airbags. In a small, economical, reliable and cheap package.
It was reasonably safe aswell, ranking 4 stars in pretty much all the international safety tests. It was a real smash hit in Australia, India and Japan. In fact, the only thing that put down the Getz was it’s advanced age, as it got replaced by the Hyundai i10. It even got the electric treatment, and it was the very first electric passenger vehicle to be sold in Australia.
Hyundai Getz Engines
- 1.1 NA Epsilon of 62 and 67 horsepower – In the ads it’s advertised as both 1.1 or 1.0 because in reality it has 1086 cc. Not to be confused with the 1.0 engine on the i10 because they are more different engines than Taaj Manzoor is to Brian Johnson. Otherwise, there are no specific issues with this antiquity, and what does break is cheap to repair because it is a 1.1 naturally aspirated 4-cylinder petrol engine.
- 1.3 NA Alpha of 82 horsepower – The base engine for the Hyundai Accident II, which even boasts electronic injection. The biggest problem however is that the 1.3 version gets the same miles per galon as the 1.4, 1.5 and 1.6, so why buy this one when you can spend 50 pesos more and buy the 1.4 version?
- 1.4 NA Alpha II of 96 horsepower – The base engine for the Hyundai Accident III, this 1.4 petrol unit boasts reliability worthy of the Elan Valley dams and still offers decent performance on the Accident. But mounting this engine on a Getz instead means an engine with performance so indecent that it puts Cardi B to shame. Or probably not. Especially if you team it up with an automatic. In which case it’s out of breath.
- 1.5 NA Alpha II of 92 and 102 horsepower – An antique of an engine, which does not justify its existence as long as the 1.4 exist. In fact, the 1.4 is also the one who retired this 1.5 so I’m not gonna bother any more with this lump.
- 1.6 NA Alpha II of 105 horsepower – Reserved exclusively for the Hyundai Getz Sport and the Venezuela version of the Getz, this car is so different from the normal car that it deserves its own article. I’m kidding, but I’m still curious who looked at a Hyundai Getz and thought “mmmm, this is the car I want to drive aggressively and do sports and go head-to-head with the neighbor’s 328i or the work colleague’s Golf GTI”.
1.5 CRDi of 80, 90 and 110 horsepower – First of all, I would not look at the 80 horsepower “D” version because it is an old, 3 cylinder engine. Secondly, I wouldn’t even look at the other versions either, and here the problem is not with the engine (the 4 cylinder ” U ” engine is actually decent), but rather with the fact that the Hyundai Getz is a city car. It is very hard for me to believe that someone drives a Hyundai Getz on the open road voluntarily.
Hyundai Getz Common Issues
- I will start with the most common issue with the Hyundai Getz and Kia Picanto from this generation, namely the rear brakes. Rear discs and pads have to be replaced more often than you would like. And it’s not that the cost of the parts will sting as much as the labor cost. But most likely you will replace them yourself.
- The second issue with the Getz is the suspension. As you would expect from a 7,000 euro car (VAT included) new, the suspension is not the most comfortable possible and at the smallest pothole you have a real chance that your spine will exit your body through your head.
- And now an important announcement for probably the only Getz automatic owner in Europe and everyone else that bought an automagic Getz: The automatic gearbox is an old fashioned torque converter, which is very reliable but needs an oil change done every 60,000 kms in mixed cycle driving and as little as 30,000 kms if you drive it strictly around town.
Hyundai Getz Verdict
It’s not a miniaturized version of the Mercedes S Class. On the contrary, it is at the opposite end of the car spectrum. If the S Class represents everything that can be put on a car, the Hyundai Getz represents the bare minimum that can be put on a car so that you can use it around town. It’s a small, cheap, reliable car and can come decently equiped. The main rival in Europe is Dacia Logan, because the Sandero is more expensive than Getz and it still smashed it because it was so cheap. And everywhere else it was sold it was a massive succes because it truly was all things to all budget-conscious men.
What engines do I recommend? By far the best city engine for the Getz is the 1.4 petrol, because the Hyundai Getz should be strictly a city car. Sure, it’s not very fast, but atleast it’s reliable and you don’t need that much power in the city anyway.