The Eon is the latest recipient of Hyundai’s ‘Fluidic Sculpture’ design language and comes with a level of styling flair not seen before (nor even expected) at the bottom of the car pyramid. Few expensive cars, let alone budget ones, have the eyeball-grabbing appeal of the Eon.
The baby Hyundai’s lines are distinctive, though the hexagonal front grille and swept-back headlamps do link it to other models in Hyundai’s range. The triangular fog lights, neatly recessed low down in the bumper, look really attractive. Even the stubby bonnet gets ridges on either side that rise sharply to meet the A pillar. An interesting design element is the front bumper, which flows into the large and stylised front wheel arches.
There is no shortage of style strokes on the sides either. A bold waistline that originates behind the headlights and kinks up to the taillight looks really unique. An arc-shaped line at the bottom of the doors is another of the Eon’s umpteen light-catching details. If there is an area where we feel Hyundai should really have toned down the styling, it’s the wheel arches, which are too pronounced and make the wheels look a tad small. And we’re talking about the top model here, which comes with 13-inch wheels. The 12-inchers on the base models will look positively puny. The rear end has a relatively short overhang and features smart crescent-shaped taillights. Build quality is superb for a car at this end of the spectrum. The tight panel gaps and overall fit and finish point belong to a car in a higher class and the flap-type door handles are the only place where you feel Hyundai has skimped.
Developing the car completely from scratch would have made it impossible for Hyundai to meet
the Eon’s tough cost targets, so a fair bit of the underpinnings are shared with Hyundai’s original
car for the masses, the tall-boy Santro. The 2380mm wheelbase is common and the suspension uses the same MacPherson strut front and torsion beam rear layout. Braking is via a combination of front discs and rear drums and ABS, not surprisingly, is absent from the features list on any trim. However, the top-spec Sportz variant we tested does get a driver-side airbag, making the Eon the cheapest car in India to come with this essential safety kit. Impact protection also includes a square-shaped radiator support panel, reinforced floor panel and door
side-impact beams. However, since the Eon will not be sold in Europe or other developed markets; we doubt it meets international standards of crash-worthiness.
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Issue: 166 | June 2013
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