Hyundai i30 GD, the continuation of one of my favorite cars. So let’s see what’s what with the 2nd generation Hyundai i30, in an article so fresh you could serve it at a fine dining place.

I really liked the first generation of the i30, so I have very high expectations from the Hyundai i30 GD. And it’s mindboggling to think is how the Korean manufacturer that was once put in the same category as Daewoo and Zanussi responded and moved up to the compact hatchback segment. Which was great because the beauty of the first i30 was in it’s reliability and simplicity, helped by a low price. Sadly however the Hyundai i30 GD wants to hang out with the cool kids.

So what was new with the Hyundai i30 GD?

  • First of all, let’s start with the big one: the 7-year warranty. A first in the automotive world and for Hyundai and Kia to come up with it, to offer a 7-year warranty while most manufacturers offer 3 or 5 years warranty, this translates into being confident in your product. This also says something about the reliability of the two manufacturers’ models. Theoretically, a 2016 Hyundai or a Kia can still have a valid factory warranty. But only if it is valid. And the main condition is that for the car to have it’s maintainance done only at the dealership or official service shops. And I really want to know how many people serviced their i30 for 7 years straight only at the dealership and never went to a normal repair shop. I think you’ve realized where I’m going with this. Especially since the Hyundai i30 GD was mostly bought by private individuals and very rarely by companies.
  • Another great leap forward was with the interior quality. If the first generation of i30 felt more like a 1830’s train cargo, the second generation comes with an interior updated to European standards. Hyundai i30 GD is no longer a korean car sold in Europe, it is a european car full stop. However, this also brings the car’s big minus in the form of a increased price tag. A Hyundai i30 GD which is as equipped as Nicola McLean could easily break the 30,000 euros barrier and I don’t know about you, but for a rival VW Golf and Ford Focus from Hyundai the price is abit steep.

Hyundai i30 GD Engines


  • 1.4 Gamma MPI of 99 horsepower – Hyundai engineers took the old 1.4 Gamma and pumped it but only up to 99 horsepower, because 100 horsepower would already have exceeded a psychological threshold and the compact would have had too much muscle and too much power for a human to be able to handle.
  • 1.6 Gamma MPI and GDI of 122 and 135 horsepower – The old 1.6 Gamma gets a direct injection system and a few extra horsepower. It remains as reliable but loses its ability to run 100% on LPG and it does suffer from the classic valve deposits. So if you want to avoid all this just get the old 122 horsepower MPi version.  
  • 1.6 Gamma T-GDI Turbo of 184 horsepower – The same 1.6 GDI gets a turbo and will become the default petrol engine for all the mid-size Hyundais and Kias in the years to come. Apart from the Gamma specific issues of the Gamma engine, in very rare cases there may be turbo failures.
  • 1.8 Nu MPi of 150 horsepower – A new engine for new times. Engine ticking, engine seizing, knocking shafts, piston skirt coating made out of crayons and many other reasons made Hyundai’s Nu engine to be the start in a reasonably priced lawsuit. Many lawsuits in many parts of the world, such as USA and Australia. Definatelly not the engine you want.
  • 2.0 Nu GDi of 175 horsepower – Perhaps the 1.8 was less popular so it sort of flew under the radar, but the 4 cylinder 2 litre petrol took the full swing of lawsuits and issues. Best to go another way.


  • 1.4 U-Line CRDi of 90 horsepower – Same legendary 1.6 CRDI that was shrunken and downgraded to 90 horsepower. Personally, I wouldn’t bother or get out of my way in order to buy this engine as the only real reasons to buy this over the 1.6 are the generally lower price of the car and maybe the cheaper insurance for countries where you get snuggles with a struggle from the gubment for every 1 cc of engine capacity, like in our Little Britain.
  • 1.6 U-Line CRDi of 110 and 128 horsepower – Standard issue, run of the mill diesel for the Hyundai i30 GD that proves its reliability once again. Pay attention to the particle filtre, which costs so much that it makes you seriously think about whether it is worth going for petrol power instead if you plan to drive around town alot.

Hyundai i30 GD Common Issue

  • Hyundai and Kia’s infotainment system was most likely bought from St Martin’s flea market, without an invoice or any sort of papers. Make sure to check the system very carefully and make sure that you can come to terms with it and that, in particular, if it connects via Bluetooth to your smartphone as the infotainment is very picky about it.
  • 2015 facelift model come with larger brake calipers that can no longer fit 15″ rims. 17″ rims are notorious for ruining any form of comfort and punishing you at every pothole, so you’ll have stick with 16″ rims. And if we’re still here, special mention should also be made for tires as the Hyundai i30 GD is more picky about tires than a woman is when she buys make-up foundation.
  • Many people complained about the direction being more vague than the classes held by a university professor who is not satisfied if you are not confused. Often the issue stems from the steering box, but maybe for you a light and vague direction is what you need. Not everyone is Sebastian Loeb’s egg-pickling cousin.

Hyundai i30 GD Verdict

You can actually see the growth of the company it’s transition to a more mid-premium segment, the easy exit from the low-cost segment accessed which adresses people who have the price as the sole criteria. An excellent hatchback that one the used market can trully go toe to toe with the Golf VI or Focus III, with it’s only real downside compared to these two being the badge. But how much emphasis do you put on the badge? Because this is the deal maker or breaker for the Hyundai i30 GD.

Which engines do I recommend? The classic, tried and tested 1.6 GDI petrol does its job decently and is all the engine you’ll ever need. Sure, the 184 horsepower 1.6 Turbo variant is better but we are already talking about more money. As for the diesel, they should’ve sold only the 1.6 CRDi. I don’t understand why they also offered 1.4 CRDi, but I remembered that the Hyundai i30 GD also appealed to the budget conscious motorist so they still wanted to fish some of them.