A SUAVE looking Fastback is joining Hyundai's medium-sized family car range.
Hot on the heels of the high performance i30N models the new Fastback completes the i30 range alongside the hatchback and estate models.
The Fastback's sloping lines not only look good but give the car more appeal with boot space up to 450 litres - some 10 per cent bigger than the hatch.
Priced from Â£20,305 the Fastback carries a Â£500 premium over the five-door i30 and is available with a choice of two engines - both turbo petrol.
A 1.6-litre diesel uprated to meet the latest emission standards will be coming on stream later in the year but for the time being the choice is between a 1.0-litre three cylinder six speed manual or a 1.4-litre with either manual or seven speed DCT automatic transmission.
The 1.4 versions cost from £21,055 for the manual and £22,055 for the automatic and with sat nav, full connectivity and wireless phone charging, the sleek new i30 Fastback is right on the money compared to the likes of the Ford Focus, VW Golf and Vauxhall Astra.
With the Fastback Hyundai is daring to be different and in profile it has elegant lines sloping to the rear.
The roof is an inch lower than the hatch and the car is some 4.5-inches longer making it a five door compact coupe that looks very classy.
Changes have also been made to lower the front with a dropped grill flanked by narrower headlights which are LEDs on all but the base model.
The rear is completely different with sculpted lines and an integral spoiler in the tailgate which comes complete with an italicised Fastback legend across the centre.
It looks the part all round but with such a shape there are always going to be compromises.
From the driver's seat the rear vision is fairly narrow, head room in the rear not that plentiful and the boot, while larger than the hatch is not as deep. The load lip is also on the high side.
Nevertheless the space is generous and with the rear seats folded that extends of 1,351 litres making the Fastback as practical as it is swish.
Legroom in the rear is plentiful and for four average sized adults there are no issues and there's a fold-down armrest cum ski hatch in the middle of the back seat.
Leather upholstery is standard on high specification Premium SE models which are priced from £23,405 and two-tone trim is available across the range as an alternative to the black dashboard.
A full set of driver aids include an electronic parking brake, collision avoidance systems and lane keeping controls which have earned the Fastback a five star safety score. All but the basic versions also come with blind spot and rear cross traffic alerts.
Compared to the hatchback the driving experience has been much improved with a stiffer suspension set up and that has helped give the Fastback some sporty credentials.
Both engines suit the car well and while the 1.0-litre is noisier it develops 120ps giving a 0 to 60 time of 11.5 seconds and a top speed of 117mph.
The 1.4-litre has more legs coming in at 9.2 seconds 0 to 60 and 129mph for the manual - 9.5 seconds and 126mph for the DCT.
With a sports mode and paddle shifters the DCT box is nicely flexible and economy is rated at 52.3mpg with emissions of 125g/km.
Officially the 1.0-litre is slightly more economical at 54.3mpg (120g/km) yet on our runs both notched up around 38 to the gallon over similar routes.
As a stylish alternative to mainstream models the i30 Fastback has a definite niche - a grown-up compact coupe with appeal to drivers young and old.