Hyundai Aura Review: First Drive

It’s here, found at a price that promises to offer value, an interior that seems upmarket and as many as six engine-gearbox-fuel combinations to fit your needs. On paper, at leastit appears like Hyundai’s Aura has something for everyone. Let us put this to the test, will we?

Exterior

Let’s settle the contentious pieces first. Yes, Aura’s design requires a bit of getting used to; particularly when seen from the back or back three-fourths. However, it does grow on you fairly quickly. We aren’t as put off by it as we were in the global unveil. If you spot one in the night, you’d appreciate the sharp LED elements in the tail lamps. The integrated lip to the boot – in isolation – looks quite nice also.

View the Aura from the other side, and you’d see 80 percent of the Nios as is. This too could have been better integrated.

You would instantly enjoy the concept of car-like 15-inch cables. Tire size remains unchanged by the Nios at 175/60 R15, also seems proportional to the overall size of this little sedan. Smaller touches such as the chrome door handle and the shark fin antenna shows some attention to detail.

Hyundai aura engine review
Hyundai aura engine review

Speaking of which, you would have to pay attention to know if it’s a Nios or even Aura on your rear-view mirror. The smoked-out projector headlamps, the contoured bonnet, the sharp bumper along with the projector fog lamps are all carried over in the hatch. Here’s a quick hack look at the daylight running lamps. The compact sedan has two boomerang elements on each side, as opposed to the Nios’ only installation. If you’re a keen observer, you’d also spot the detailing on the grille that has a honeycomb pattern instead of horizontal slats.

There’s no denying that the Aura is merely a Nios having a boot. It is not especially handsome but looks premium and well-built.

To differentiate the sportier Turbo variant, the grille gets a rich gloss black finish. Sadly, that’s about it. We would have loved to determine either a dual-tone paint scheme, distinct (or larger ) metal wheels and maybe a set of naughty exhaust suggestions to push the point home.

Hyundai Interior Design Review

Step inside the cabin, and there’s hardly any here differentiating against the Nios. It is banking on a premium-looking copper/bronze-colored insert on the dashboard (as opposed to off-white on the hatchback) to remind you that you have the sedan. The design of this cabin is identical, for instance, honeycomb-like texture on the dashboard, door pads, and gear lever housing. Pick the Turbo version, and you get the color theme from the Nios’ Sportz Double Tone variant: full black with garnishes of crimson.

There’s new upholstery on the seat also, and we must appreciate the essence of the fabric used. Hyundai’s missed a hint at the front by skimping out on adjustable headrests for front seats. The chairs themselves score high on comfort and support for somebody with an average build. For the ones that are obese or have wide shoulders, the chairs will feel lean. Tilt-adjust steering and height-adjustable driver’s seat is available on all variants except the base-spec E; you would have no trouble finding a comfy position. On that note, Hyundai should’ve equipped the Aura with a front armrest to help on those long road trips.

From the rear seat, you’d find that the kneeroom isn’t any greater than the hatchback. Hyundai hasn’t copy-pasted the back seats from the Nios. That, coupled with semi-hard cushioning, makes for an perfect seat to devote a great deal of time in.

The pinch comes from the shape of headroom. You’d feel you are a bit too close to the rear windscreen, and odds are you’d have only about a fistful between your head and the roof. This problem compounds when you are above 5 feet tall. If you are taking a look at exactly the Aura as a do-it-all household compact sedan, you would be amazed at the comparative lack of width at the cabin. In our publications, it’s a four-seater. Perhaps four adults and a kid at best.

Virtually every little feel-good feature you would want from a vehicle that costs as much is included, and then some. You would love that you don’t really have to extend all of the way to the top-spec to get a well-specced variant. If you are on a budget, the one above the base S variant ticks off all the essentials such as power windows, a 2DIN audio system, rear AC vents and electrical adjust for the mirrors.

The fully-loaded SX (O) variant brings with it some significant firepower. It shares the 8-inch touchscreen with the Nios and gets the usual connectivity choices too. Easy to use, simple to understand — Hyundai has pinpointed the basics down here.

Other goodies include a wireless charger, automatic climate control, a reverse parking camera, and keyless entry and go. You also receive a detailed 5.3-inch MID in the instrument cluster that displays a host of information, including door standing, distance-to-empty and normal speed over the usual readouts.

You’d argue that’s exactly what you get with the Nios; you’d be right. And also to keep the accountants at Hyundai joyful, it’s available only from the top-spec petrol-manual variant. Also, in typical Hyundai style, you can’t have the Aura AMT or Turbo at the complete top-spec SX (O) version. You get an SX+ version rather, but the only actual miss there is a leather-wrapped steering wheel. So, as long as you do not care about the name of the variant you have, you’d be fine.

Hyundai should’ve built on the Nios’ strong feature list for your Aura. And we do not mean throwing in a sunroof or ventilated seats. But basics, such as adjustable headrests, backlit switches for the power windows, a front armrest and auto-dimming rearview mirrors should’ve been included. Goodies like automatic headlamps and rain-sensing wipers would have strengthened the Aura’s case compared to its sibling. Since right now, you only need to determine if you want the boot or not.

Hyundai Aura Performance

Hyundai is supplying three engines using the Aura compact sedan: a 1.2-liter gas, a 1.2-litre diesel and a 1.0-liter turbocharged gas engine. There is a bi-fuel (petrol-CNG) variant available as well. Especially, there is no turbo-automatic or CNG-automatic combination on offer here.

This familiar engine has been soldiering on for a motive. There is almost nothing wrong with it. Even under the little hood of the Aura, the 1.2-liter petrol engine creates a large first impression with its refinement. You’d be scratching your mind figuring out when the engine is truly running — it is that silent.

It’s a laidback engine. That is to say, it feels ample for city commutes, as well as sedate trips on the highway. The light clutch and positive gear throw mean you are able to push this for hours before needing a break. This is good news for anybody looking at taking the Aura to the workplace and back every day. You are able to remain in second (or sometimes third) to get a rate breaker and pull clean in the same equipment immediately afterwards. However, keep in mind progress isn’t exactly quick. The engine doesn’t knock or lug very easily: simply takes its own sweet time to begin. Even on the street, ambling about calmly at 80-100kmph will observe the Aura in its element. No play, no fuss, just gets the job done.

Compared to the engine on the Xcent, this engine has obtained a step back concerning refinement. Blame this to the reworking necessary for the small engine to satisfy stringent BS6 emission norms. Vibrations can be sensed on the dashboard, door pads and also a slight buzz in the ground. You’d also observe that the retuned engine features a more powerful pickup when compared with the older one. After the turbo kicks in, it is a little bit stronger than previously.

That’s not to say it has lost its easy to induce nature. We think that it’s among the most versatile small diesel engines that you can buy. It will not tire you out by requesting frequent gear changes within the town. And on the street, it is at considerably more ease in contrast to the gas. If you see yourself shuttling between cities frequently for a meeting or to meet family over the weekend, then think about the diesel.

The 1.2-liter engines can be found with a 5-speed AMT. And, as far as AMTs proceed – it is among the best that you’d experience. The changes are smooth, with next to no head nod. Obviously, the caveat here is that you would have to be more gentle on the throttle. If you aren’t, you would notice a lag between changes once the gearbox retains the gear up to the redline.

There is a manual mode also that it is possible to predict upon by pulling the gear lever on your own. Shifts are not any faster in this mode, it only provides a higher degree of control.

Let us clear up something: that the Aura turbo-petrol isn’t a Tigor JTP equal. It is not an absolutely sporty small sedan.

It’s fairly a versatile engine that lets you pull from double to triple digits in third equipment itself. But it’s not an engine that appreciates being revved all of the ways to the redline. Progress is not as brisk once you’re above the 4000rpm mark, which means you may as well shift up.

Thankfully, the engine is easy to drive within the city too. It doesn’t feel bogged down or annoyingly lurchy in stop and go traffic. There is enough power for one to remain in either first or second for an entire office commute.

In the lot, it is this engine that is our favorite. It takes a little bit of the gas motor’s refinement and blends it with a bit of torque out of the diesel. Just right for whatever you would expect from it.

It’s got a drivetrain for everybody: the occasional user, the town commuter, the street mile-muncher along the fun-seeker. Yes, the turbo variant is not your shortcut to a petrolhead paradise, but it will enough to throw a grin on your face. Conventional Hyundai strong points, such as a strong feature record, premium quality plus a well-built, well-finished cabin, are all in place also.

The unique guarantee plan enables you to select between 3 years / 100,000kilometers, 4 years / 50,000km and 5 years / 40,000km; ensuring reassurance.