Interior and tech
Save for a few hard and slightly scratchy textured plastics here and there, there’s not a lot to complain about in the i30 N’s cabin. As with the standard i30, it’s logically laid out, feels well-built and offers good levels of comfort and refinement.
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In fact, comfort is one of the N’s strong points. While you don’t get the option of bewinged Recaros like many rivals offer, Hyundai’s own bolstered seats are well-padded and widely adjustable – electrically on the Performance, manually otherwise – and support you well. They don’t adjust quite low enough for some, but between the seats and the reach- and rake-adjustable steering wheel, most drivers should be able to find a good driving position. Fastback buyers will find a little less rear headroom, and similar boot space.
The wheel is good to hold – a chunky (but not too chunky) three-spoke affair whose buttons for stereo controls, cruise control and information display functions are logically arranged. Here you’ll also find two larger, Performance Blue buttons used to select drive modes. On the left spoke is the button to switch between Eco, Comfort and Sport modes, while the right, denoted with a small chequered flag, switches between ‘N’ mode and a custom setting.
Those custom settings are adjusted through the central touchscreen, with more to play with in the Performance. But they’re one of the i30 N’s highlights, allowing you to tailor the drive to your own preferences, forever just a couple of quick presses on the N button away, and only ever a press on the left-hand button away from switching back to the car’s more relaxed modes. For us, it’s driving modes done just right.
Otherwise, the i30 N’s central touchscreen gives you access to an intuitive satellite navigation system, as well as iPhone and Android integration. The cabin is spacious, though feels a little less so than that of a Golf, and boot space is relatively uncompromised by the strengthening cross-brace between the suspension turrets.