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Road Test by Mark Slack: Hyundai Bayon

Road Test by Mark Slack: Hyundai Bayon

Every so often you get behind the wheel of a car, usually a cheaper model, and are surprised in the sense that you could happily drive one every day. What’s even more surprising on Hyundai’s Bayon, and unusual in this class, is that it is also incredibly comfortable and capable on long journeys. It also comes with enough standard equipment to put more expensive models to shame.

Priced from €23,385/£20,350 there are three trim levels, one engine with two power outputs along with either 6-speed manual gears or a dual clutch automatic. The turbocharged, 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder engine is assisted by 48v hybrid power. Performance is more than capable, even if nowhere near warm hatch territory, yet feels quicker and has the far from unpleasant characteristic thrum of the 3-cylinder. My test car was mated to the manual 6-speed gearbox and unless you need an automatic is the better choice in my view. Cross country it’s surprisingly good fun despite being aimed at urban commuting.

Hyundai describe the Bayon as a crossover SUV, not sure I’d agree with that, but you get lots of space inside, although thanks to that hybrid gear the boot is a tad limited. It’ll fit most people’s requirements fine and you can always lower the rear seat in whole or part.  Inside the cabin the seats are comfortable, front are heated, and there’s decent space even in the rear, although a fifth passenger might prefer short journeys.

As one might expect of Hyundai the assembly quality is excellent but you can tell it’s built to a price with hard plastics evident, but they have made the effort of contrast by different textures on some of the surfaces. This gives the interior a more quality look and a allied to neat and very clear instrumentation it makes the Bayon a nice place to be seated.

This is a very appealing car, it simply does what it’s meant to do and does it well. It has a nice driving feel with clear and simple controls, plenty of buttons rather than an overly digital experience. The climate control offers individual settings rather than as with so many cars multiple options, i.e. face and feet whereas in the Bayon you can have them separately.

The style will not be to everyone’s taste but it’s certainly different and is quite colour sensitive as to looks in my view. I really enjoyed the Bayon and was genuinely sorry to see it depart.

Facts at a Glance

Model: Hyundai Bayon Premium

Price: €25,863/£22,495

Engine: 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder, turbocharged petrol developing 100PS

Gears: 6-Speed manual

Performance: 0-100 kmh (62 mph) 10.7 seconds/Maximum Speed 230 kph (114 mph)

Economy: 5.3l/100km (53.3mpg) Combined driving (WLTP)

Emissions: 121 g/km (WLTP)

Model tested was UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.


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