Our Fleet Test Drive: Hyundai ix35 - 1st report
01 February 2011
Author: Hugh Hunston
 The touch-screen
Hyundai's ix35 joins a growing crossover herd and contests a market territory that includes the Nissan Qashqai, Skoda Yeti, Ford Kuga and its own corporate cousin, the Kia Sportage.
Until the brand bravely pitches its upcoming i40 estate car and saloon into the upper medium corporate sector, the ix35 remains its fleet mainstay, with high conquest levels and the five-year, unlimited mileage warranty winning friends and influencing business people.
Sharing a platform with the i30/Kia Ceed, our new long-termer is the heavily loaded, 1.7-litre diesel Premium spec variant with front-wheel drive running gear.
This silver ix35 (metallic paint costs £445 extra) comes with the £820 'Media' and £715 'Individual' packs. Of the two, the media selection - including touch-screen satellite navigation, rear parking camera and door-flexing seven-speaker sound system - appears the more astute investment. The Individual option includes leather Seat facings, auto dimming mirror with compass, and fancy atmospheric blue lighting for the instrument cluster.
From a company car perspective the £200 stop/start ISG system would have been a pragmatic addition because it shaves 4g/km off the 139g/km figure, edging the nominal official fuel figure towards 50mpg, as well as a £30 Vehicle Excise Duty saving.
Our Premium class ix35 comprehensively elevates the car above the quirkily specified Style equivalent, which shares its heated rear seats  but carries one-touch downward and opening, not upwards and closing, front electric windows. Potential result? Window left open overnight and rain-drenched seat and foot well the following morning. Meanwhile, leather-trimmed seats, steering wheel and gear knob , allied to fancier dual control heating, tidy satnav/infotainment screen and panoramic sunroof, edge our ix35 closer to classy Kuga, Yeti and Touran cabin standards.
Life with the ix35 started with the dreary prospect of being sentenced to Radio 2 for the duration. The touch-screen  refused to select satnav or help us escape from Chris Evans, Ken Bruce et al. But when the Hyundai stopped and restarted the glitch was no more and both the system and our confidence recovered.
|Hyundai ix35 1.7 CRDi 2WD Prem.|
|Claimed combined |
|Our average |
|Actual CPM ||52.3p|
|Positive||Well-specced new |
|Negative||Brand elevation |
comes at a price