Hyundai Xcent Performance & First Drive

Hyundai Xcent Overview

The 2017 Hyundai Xcent facelift enters a segment where change is the need of the hour as new entrants are constantly innovating may it be Volkswagen, with the feature-packed Ameo, or Tata with the Tigor; each one of them stands out, with unique cars, in a segment, where a few more entrants expected this year. The once booming subcompact sedan segment finds itself battling against some of the premium hatchbacks as also sedans and that’s why we see a bid across the board, to revive the subcompact sedan segment in India; and well, we’ve driven the latest in the segment, the facelift Hyundai. Book a test drive for Xcent in Tryaldrive

Check for Hyundai Xcent On Road Price in New Delhi

Hyundai Xcent Exterior

Hyundai has tried to tie in the same design scheme from the bigger luxury cars like the Elantra. This brings in a new chrome ‘cascading design’ grille that cuts a similar shape to the Elantra. It also differentiates the Xcent from the Grand i10 and as a result, the two no longer look identical from the front. The grille looks great on the long and sleek Elantra, but to my eyes it doesn’t fit quite as well on the more rounded and stubby Xcent. While the side profile looks the same, the rear gets a tasteful makeover. The smaller taillamps from the old car make way for new wrap-around units. These increase the sense of width and give the car a more premium look. The design of the bumpers has changed as well, with new DRLs in the front bumper. Overall, the Xcent looks more premium and grown up.

Hyundai Xcent Interior

Sure, there’s a new 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system on the top-spec SX and SX (O) variants (the mid-spec S and the new E+ variant get the older 2DIN audio system instead). What’s more, the system also supports Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink. The interface is easy to get used to, pairing phones is a breeze and the audio quality is at acceptable levels too. The other little addition comes in form of the voice command button on the steering wheel. With a phone connected to the infotainment system, it lets you place calls without taking your hands off the wheel. It’s quite well suited to Indian accents, and pretty much gets the job done every single time.The big screen also serves as a display for the reverse camera. Now, the Xcent always had a reverse camera, but the video feed was relayed to the internal rear view mirror. Which brings me to my next point. The old auto dimming mirror has been ditched in favour of a manual one. There’s another cost-cutting measure that wants to quietly slip under the radar. The climate control interface no longer has “Clean Air” written on it. Hyundai has gotten rid of the cluster ioniser that ensures the vents blow purified air into the cabin. But, that’s where my grouse with the interiors end.

The air-conditioning is stellar, and setting it on its lowest will give you the chills in no time. I managed to fog up the windows on the outside on a hot and humid evening in Mumbai – it’s that effective! The rear half is cooled quickly too, thanks to the rear AC vents. In case you plan on being chauffeur-driven, the Xcent does make a strong case for itself. The recline angle is comfortable, there’s just enough legroom for a six-footer like me to sit behind my own driving position and there’s a central armrest as well. Three abreast at the rear shouldn’t be a big problem but be prepared to rub shoulders with your fellow passengers – quite literally. So, nothing new there.

Hyundai Xcent Performance

There’s a 1.2- litre diesel engine, under the bonnet, and it’s got 2 bhp more than before. It’s the same unit that does duty on the Grand i10 and churns the same amount of power. There’s 74 bhp on offer and the torque on offer is the same too, but the engine now feels eager to go; and though there is a bit of lag, once you cross the 1800 rpm mark, peak torque kicks in and there’s power, at your disposal. The gears slot in well and the light clutch makes life better, in stop start traffic conditions. Hyundai claims that the new Xcent returns a fuel efficiency figure of 25.4 kmpl and that’s great considering that it’s peppy, and not lazy, off the line. Mind you, it’s not a drivers’ car yet, though the steering has been worked on and now doesn’t feel artificially engineered as before and that’s a big take away.Ride and handling is a department which Hyundai has been working on, ever since it brought the Elantra to India, and the Xcent benefits from this. The Xcent rides well and tackles the potholes on the road, with ease, which makes it very comfortable to be in. The suspension setup is not too soft or firm, rather soaks in all the undulations the road surface has to offer and doesn’t let you bounce around in the cabin. The slight firm suspension might come in handy when the car is fully loaded probably but kudos to Hyundai on the work its done on the car

Hyundai Xcent Rideing

Hyundai has also done some quiet work on the steering and suspension set-up. The steering feel is much improved and no longer has the artificially engineered tendency to self-centre. The weighting of the wheel is much more progressive and while it still isn’t the nicest system around, it no longer feels strange. The suspension also has a firmer feel. Damping is still very good and bumps are well ironed-out but you can feel that the car is now firmer. I suppose this would help when the car is fully loaded at speed but it hasn’t transformed the Xcent into a driver’s delight. This is still the friendly, spacious and practical choice in it’s segment. We never had any complaints with the old suspension set-up, but nevertheless, applaud Hyundai for trying something new.

Hyundai Xcent Safety

2017 Hyundai Xcent comes with disc brakes at the front and drum brakes at the rear. The company has offered dual front airbags as standard fitment across the entire variant line-up of the new sedan. In addition, several premium features such as Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Impact Sensing Auto Door Unlock, Keyless entry with Smart Key, Rear Parking Sensors, Rear Camera with display on audio, Central Locking, etc. are available with the top-end variants. Though, it looks bleaker than the preceding model, which had ABS as standard safety feature. Also, the other sedans in the segment come equipped with more safety features than Xcent.

Hyundai Xcent Price in Mumbai

Hyundai Xcent Ex-Showroom Price in Mumbai ranges from 5,39,965/- (Xcent E Petrol) to 8,44,528/- (Xcent SX Diesel Optional). Get best offers for Hyundai Xcent from Hyundai Dealers in Mumbai. Check for Xcent price in Mumbai at Carzprice

Hyundai XcentVerdict

2017 Hyundai Xcent seems to be better than the preceding model in terms of exterior appearance, interior features, and driving dynamics. A special mention goes to the new diesel engine, which is more powerful and fuel efficient than before. The automatic variant is also available for added convenience. In all, it is a decent offering with more bells and whistles than before.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *