2016 Hyundai i20 Active stands out with crossover design, distinct styling

Article by Christian A., on September 17, 2015

Hyundai Motor revealed that it is expanding the very popular i20 range with the Hyundai i20 Active. What sets this new offering apart from the typical B-segment models is the rugged and unique crossover design.

That takes care of the exterior and the engine. Next is the interior. The i20 Active’s interior greatly benefits from the comfort, quality, and superior space, features already present in the i20 five-door. However, the i20 Active provides greater ergonomics due to the higher position of the driver’s seat plus additional enhancements to the design.

Its distinct metal pedals give it an appearance of toughness and high quality. The interior comes in a Tangerine Orange color application which expands the personalization options. For those who want a more tailored option, there is the unique option of having the i20 Active in a Morning Blue for its exterior.

The i20 Active specifically targets the young customers in urban areas who have active lifestyles, Head of Product Management at Hyundai Motor Europe, Raf Van Nuffel discloses. This is partly the reason for the crossover features and rugged design.

Van Nuffel reveals that the higher stance of the i20 Active and its design enhancements fully conveys the adventurous spirit of this car but not at the expense of the comfort and large space many have come to recognize from the i20 five-door.

Hyundai Motor introduced the i20 Active during the 2015 Frankfurt International Motor Show and expects it to go on sale by early 2016 in Europe. With this, the i20 Active will join the i20 Coupe, and the i20 five-door in the European market.

The release of the i20 active will also expand Hyundai’s offering of European crossover and SUV to four models in addition to the All-New Tucson, New Grand Santa Fe, and New Santa Fe.

Exterior Design

Thus while the i20 Active has been primarily based on the five-door i20 with qualities such as large space, high quality, and excellent comfort, more than 50% of the parts on the exterior are unique to this variant.

In order for the i20 Active to get that crossover stand, the suspension settings were revised thus elevating its body 20 mm higher than the i20 five-door. The inside seats have also been elevated thus making the driver even higher when inside the car.

This increase in the height makes it easier and more comfortable for the driver to enter and exit the i20 Active while providing superior visibility when driving. The i20 Active has its own unique front bumper and rear bumper that give added protection when one is driving away from the public roads.

Another contribution of the bumpers however is that it they highlight the adventurous appeal of the i20 Active. Adding to the already amazing appeal is the exclusive rear spoiler. It also helps that the front and rear parts have round fog lamps integrated to it.

Further enhancing the rugged appeal are the side cladding and bold side skirts which are complemented by its robust wheel-arch mouldings. The crossover stance of the i20 Active is also complemented by the silver roof rails on the top of the car, adding to its practical look.

These are not just the features that set apart the i20 Active from the other models in Hyundai’s i20 range. There is also the high-gloss black hexagonal grill with the chrome accents and the fuel cap cover that is finished in silver.

The new 17-inch wheels need to be mentioned as well. The launching of the i20 Active is likely to excite everyone as it will also mark the release of its latest engine for the i20 range.


The automaker is introducing the new three-cylinder turbocharged Kappa 1.0-litre T-GDI direct injection engine. Putting great emphasis on efficient and dynamic driving, this engine will be available sometime in early 2016 for the i20.

This T-GDI engine will come in two power outputs. The first is the standard 100 PS power that is focused on giving comfort while maximizing fuel economy. The second one is the 120 PS which offers higher power and was specifically developed in order to allow for a more spirited driving without the need to give up on efficiency.

It should be noted that the 120 PS power is not final but will become available based on market specification. Dr. Michael Winkler shares that the new engine is indeed a perfect fit for Hyundai’s i20 range.

Dr. Winkler is at present the Head of Powertrain at Hyundai Motor’s European Technical Center in Rüsselsheim. Though the engine appears to be a downsized version of its predecessors, the direct gasoline injection plus the compact turbocharger and electrical wastegate actuator provide customers with both driving pleasure and fuel economy, Dr. Winkler concludes.

The Kappa engines have a fuel efficiency rating of 61.4 mpg and CO2 emissions of 106 g/km. For those who have been following Hyundai, it is obvious that the Kappa will be the first for the company’s new generation of newly-developed, albeit small, turbocharged power plants made for the Europe market.

In fact, Hyundai Motor’s European Technical Center located in Germany played a significant part in researching, developing, engineering, and testing the Kappa for use specifically in the roads of Europe. Hyundai has long been committed to developing fuel saving technology through downsizing.

The Kappa engine more than fulfils this promise with its dynamic performance and efficient combustion. Both power versions of the Kappa have a maximum 171.6 Nm torque at 1,500 rpm, thus allowing the perfect mix of efficiency and dynamism.

The turbocharger is able to improve the fuel efficiency of the i20 Active since pumping losses are reduced with the help of the electric waste gate actuator, thereby improving not just the low-end torque but even the throttle response. Friction is reduced since the engine is refined by optimizing the split-cooling concept of the cylinder head and cylinder block.

In order to ensure that the engine is as small as it can be, the exhaust manifold is incorporated with the cylinder head. Thus cooling becomes more efficient through the use of the cylinder head water cooling system. The end result is quite clear as the catalyst experiences faster warm-ups, again improving and lowering emissions and fuel consumptions.

Aside from the 1.0-liter Kappa, a 1.4-liter Kappa will also be made available by the i20 Active. This four-cylinder gasoline engine has 1,368 cc and can give an output of 100 PS with a maximum torque of 134.4 Nm.

For those who do not want a gasoline engine, there is also the option of the i20 Active 1.4-litre U II diesel engine. This option is available for the i20 Coupe and i20 five-door as well. Power output is 90 PS which, like the gasoline version, is fuel efficient but still provides refined operation.

Press Release


At the Frankfurt International Motor Show 2015, Hyundai Motor is introducing the New Hyundai i20 Active, a rugged compact crossover for customers with active lifestyles.

Further expanding the popular i20 range, the New i20 Active will go on sale in Europe in early 2016, joining the spacious, functional i20 five-door and the sporty, individual i20 Coupe. The car’s arrival also broadens Hyundai Motor’s European crossover and SUV offering to four models - alongside the All-New Tucson, New Santa Fe and New Grand Santa Fe* – each new or enhanced in 2015.

*Not available in the UK market

“With the introduction of New i20 Active we further diversify our offering in the B-segment with an attractive crossover model,” explains Thomas A. Schmid, Chief Operating Officer at Hyundai Motor Europe. “In 2015 our entire crossover and SUV line-up has been renewed, as part of our youngest ever model range in Europe. And with the introduction of our 1.0-litre turbocharged engine, we further enhance our customer proposition in the European B-Segment.”

2. Design

New Hyundai i20 Active’s rugged crossover design enhances appeal and increases versatility
Over half of exterior parts differ from standard i20 model
Higher seating position adds to comfort and aids visibility
The distinctive and rugged crossover design of the i20 Active sets it apart from conventional B-segment models. While the new car is based on the i20 five-door – sharing its expansive space, comfort and quality – over 50% of the exterior parts are unique to this model.

To give the i20 Active a characteristic crossover stance, revised suspension settings elevate the body of the i20 Active by 20 mm compared to the i20 five-door. The seating position is also raised, placing the driver higher within the car. The result makes ingress and egress more comfortable, as well as offering superior visibility while driving.

Underlining the i20 Active’s adventurous appeal are the unique front and rear bumpers with integrated skid plates, which offer additional protection when driving away from public roads. Round fog lamps are integrated at the front and rear, with an exclusive rear spoiler adding to the i20 Active’s appeal.

The rugged appearance is further enhanced by bold side skirts and side cladding, to complement the robust wheel-arch mouldings. Moving to the top of the car, a set of silver roof rails complement the crossover’s stance, adding essential practicality.

Other details that set i20 Active apart from its siblings include a reverse treatment of the signature Hyundai hexagonal grille in high-gloss black with chrome surroundings, a fuel cap cover in silver finish and newly designed 17-inch wheels.

The interior benefits from the superior space, comfort and quality of the i20 five-door, with greater ergonomics from the heightened driving position and further design enhancements. Unique metal pedals present a robust and high quality appearance, while Tangerine Orange interior colour applications expand the personalisation options. Also exclusive to the i20 Active is the Morning Blue exterior colour, a distinctive option for those wanting a bespoke finish.

“The New i20 Active’s rugged design and crossover features target young urban customers with active lifestyles,” says Raf Van Nuffel, Head of Product Management at Hyundai Motor Europe. “The higher stance and the bespoke design enhancements express the car’s adventurous spirit without compromising the spaciousness and comfort of the i20 five-door version.”

3. Engines

New efficient 1.0-litre T-GDI engine introduced to the i20 family
Three-cylinder turbocharged direct injection engine with 100 PS and 120 PS (dependent on model)
First of a new generation of in-house developed small petrol turbo-charged engines for Europe
Coinciding with the arrival of the i20 Active comes the introduction of a new engine for the i20 family. Focused on dynamic and efficient driving, the new Kappa 1.0-litre T-GDI three-cylinder turbocharged direct injection engine will be available to the i20 range in early 2016.

The 1.0-litre T-GDI engine is available in two power outputs. The standard-power 100 PS version is tuned to maximise fuel economy and focuses on comfort, while the high-power 120 PS* unit has been developed to facilitate more spirited driving without sacrificing efficiency.

*available subject to market specification

“The new 1.0-litre T-GDI is a perfect fit for the i20 family,” states Dr. Michael Winkler, Head of Powertrain at Hyundai Motor’s European Technical Center in Rüsselsheim. “A downsized 1.0-litre 3-cylinder engine with direct gasoline injection and a matched compact turbocharger with electrical wastegate actuator offers customers not only fuel economy but also driving pleasure.”

These fuel efficient Kappa engines, which achieve up to 61.4 mpg and CO2 emissions as low as 106 g/km, are the first of a new generation of newly-developed small, turbocharged power plants tuned for Europe. Hyundai Motor’s European Technical Center in Germany played a key role in the engine’s research, development, engineering and testing, specifically for use on European roads.

The new engine features highly efficient combustion and dynamic performance to fulfil Hyundai's dedication to implementing downsizing as a fuel saving technology. The standard 100 PS version and the high power 120 PS version both deliver a peak torque of 171.6 Nm at 1,500 rpm providing a perfect combination of dynamism and efficiency.

A turbo charger with electric waste gate actuator improves fuel efficiency by lowering pumping losses as well as improving throttle response and low-end torque. An optimised split-cooling concept for the cylinder head and block brings engine refinement by reducing friction.

To keep the engine unit as small as possible, the exhaust manifold is integrated within the cylinder head and can therefore be cooled efficiently using the cylinder head water cooling system. These efforts result in faster warm-up of the catalyst and ultimately in improved real-world fuel consumption and emissions.

The i20 Active will also be available with a 1.4-litre Kappa engine. The 1,368 cc four-cylinder gasoline engine delivers 100 PS and 134.4 Nm of torque.

As an alternative to gasoline, a 1.4-litre U II diesel engine comes as an optional extra for the i20 Active, just as it does for the i20 five-door and i20 Coupe. This 90 PS diesel engine is fuel efficient yet refined in operation.

*Neither 1.4-litre Kappa engine or 1.4-litre diesel engine available in UK

4. Connectivity

TomTom LIVE services available for selected i20 models in early 2016
LIVE package includes: Real-time traffic updates, weather, POI (Points of Interest) search, plus speed camera warnings in selected countries
Industry-leading seven-year free subscription to LIVE services
The New i20 Active keeps customers connected, safe and informed while on the move. TomTom LIVE Services are available to the i20 range from early 2016 onwards and can keep drivers informed, in real time, of traffic conditions and local weather, while also flagging up Points of Interest and, in selected countries, the locations of speed cameras.

5. Four crossover and SUV models boost Hyundai Motor brand in Europe

New Hyundai i20 Active adds to Hyundai’s crossover SUV range
All four new or enhanced in 2015, designed and developed in Europe
B-segment is key to Hyundai’s ongoing growth in the region
Hyundai’s crossover and SUV range now consists of four models, each new or enhanced in 2015. New i20 Active accompanies the All-New Tucson, New Santa Fe and New Grand Santa Fe*, continuing the brand’s strong tradition of producing SUVs for the European Market.

*Not available in the UK market

Having sold more than one million SUVs since the launch of the Santa Fe in 2001, Hyundai Motor is well accustomed to European motorists’ appetite for rugged, capable and stylish cars. Expanding the SUV and crossover range into the growing B-segment is a strategic business decision that aims to contribute to 100,000 i20-family sales each year.

Like its siblings, the i20 Active has been designed and developed in Europe to cope with the demands of quality, refinement and reliability expected across the European market. The i20 Active will be produced alongside the i20 family at Hyundai Assan Otomotiv Sanayi (HAOS) plant in Izmit, Turkey.


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