Fleet News

Hyundai Coupe SIII V6

Hyundai

Review

I’ve just had to double-check my diary – it’s five months to the day since I was given the keys to our SIII and five months to the day that I must now return them as my restless feet have won the day and I’m moving on.


 

 

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    I’ve just had to double-check my diary – it’s five months to the day since I was given the keys to our SIII and five months to the day that I must now return them as my restless feet have won the day and I’m moving on.

    It didn’t take long for a selfish smugness to set in as some of the other more prestigious cars on the Fleet News test fleet suffered their tantrums or succumbed to electronic lurgies – and my inscrutable South Korean companion just looked on.

    But for a very slow puncture – caused from the onset by a small machine screw deep in the central tread area of the front-left tyre and repaired at a fraction of the cost of a new Kumho tyre – my five months with the SIII would have been boringly drama-free. At least that minor incident highlighted a shortcoming with the car’s pathetic non-cranked jack handle.

    I deserted the SIII for three weeks at the end of summer for my annual trek to the Alps, but post-holiday the miles started piling up again – mostly on motorways, which are precisely the SIII’s Achilles’ heel.

    Those three weeks were at the wheel of a German car – same engine capacity and number of cylinders as the Coupe and an abject lesson in how to isolate a car’s interior and its occupants from the nasty and noisy world outside.

    Even at the UK’s national speed limit only the raucous sound of a ‘Wintersun’ album track can block out the SIII’s persistent wind and engine noise.

    In stark contrast, on its home territory on – I assure you – an unrestricted section of autobahn my German steed was hushed serenity at speeds that would have had any UK judge coughing and spluttering on his Horlicks in his haste to get me banged up behind bars.

    Let’s hope Hyundai’s recently scooped SIII replacement fares better in the future.

    Fuel consumption has never varied by any more than 5mpg worst to best: a low of 25.1mpg rising to a more recent 29.4mpg when driven with an unnaturally light right foot, but good for a 2.7-litre V6 nonetheless.

    A look back through my road test log made me chuckle.

    At each test average there has been a tiny incremental improvement in economy -– and performance – as the engine has continued to loosen up: 26.4, 26.5, 27.1 and, presently, 27.2 according to the calculator.

    Weekly under-bonnet checks have shown oil consumption to be virtually nil over 6,000 miles, and the only topping-up needed has been the washer bottle.

    No strops, no tantrums, no mysterious creaks from the dashboard or groans from the suspension and nothing fell off.

    Note to the next driver – you’ll find a spare set of earplugs in the centre cubbyhole.

    Enjoy.

    Fact file

    Price: £19,597 (£19,972 as tested)
    Mileage: 7,155
    CO2 emissions (g/km): 236
    Company car tax bill (2007) 22% tax-payer: £120 per month
    Insurance group: 14
    Combined mpg: 28.5
    Test mpg: 27.2
    CAP Monitor RV: £5,675/29%
    Contract hire rate: £463
    Expenditure to date: Nil
     

  • Figures based on three years/60,000 miles
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    CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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