2017 Hyundai Xcent facelift review, test drive
Apr 20, 2017 by Shapur Kotwal
What’s it like to drive?
What also makes a huge difference is that this car is so much better to drive. Let’s start with the engine, which at 1,186cc is now higher in both capacity and power. It now makes 75hp (up 3hp) and 190Nm of torque from as low as 1,750rpm. Start the engine and it settles into a lumpy idle, so reminiscent of a three-pot motor. The gear lever shakes, there are some vibrations coming up from the floor and place your feet on the pedals, and you can feel the pulses of the engine here too. It’s not as smooth as a petrol three-cylinder for sure, but insulation seems to be better than on the earlier car. And put your foot down on the accelerator and the engine spools up extremely quickly, an extra dollop of urge coming through as soon as you cross 2,000rpm. As a result, the best way to drive this car is to use the extremely accurate gearbox and keep the motor on the ball, above 2,000rpm. Drive the Xcent in this manner and performance is quite strong and effortless, a huge improvement over the earlier car. Even flat-out performance is much better. 0-100, for example, now only takes 15.58sec as against 18.61sec for the earlier car, and the new car is also a couple of seconds quicker in gear. The sweet spot in the powerband, however, is quite narrow, and it’s all over by 3,500rpm. After this, the Xcent does not accelerate quite as strongly or as smoothly, with a bit of a rattle also emanating from under the bonnet.
Hyundai has also improved bump absorption and ride quality. There’s a fair amount of suppleness in the suspension, bad patches are ridden over with consummate ease and acoustic isolation is so good you hardly ever hear the wheels thumping over rough ground. Only sharp bumps and ridges tend to catch the car out, the occasional ‘whack’ heard when riding over them. Even the steering and handling is nicer. The former is now lighter to use, smoother in operation and more accurate. And grip from the chassis is now so good, the Xcent is actually quite fun to drive around corners.
Should I buy one?
With its updated looks, improved engine and more mature ride and handling, the facelifted Hyundai Xcent is a big step forward over the earlier car. It is nicer to drive, nicer to sit in, and even comes with a practical 407-litre boot. If you are in the market for compact sedan, make sure you take a long hard look at this one.
2017 Hyundai Xcent facelift launched
2017 Hyundai Xcent image gallery
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Price range (in lakhs)*
|Ex-showroom price (Delhi):
||Rs 5.38 - 8.42 lakh
||1197cc, 4-cyls, DOHC/ 1186cc, 3-cyls, DOHC, turbocharged
||83hp at 6000rpm/ 75hp at 4000rpm
||114Nm at 4000rpm/ 190Nm at 1750-2250rpm
||5-speed manual/ 4-speed automatic
Chassis & Body
||Coupled torsion beam
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