Used Car Buying Guide: Pre-owned Hyundai i20 - All You Need To Know

Team CARS24
Team CARS24

Updated on: 26th January, 2024 IST


Are you looking for a reliable hatchback car that has been in the market for some years now? Launched over a decade back, the Hyundai i20 has been among the successful car models in the premium hatchback segment. 

Third Gen Hyundai i20
Third Gen Hyundai i20 - 2020

Do not want to invest in a new car? No problem. With the launch of the third generation i20, there are plenty of second-hand Hyundai i20 selling for cheap in the used car market, and some of them are in excellent condition too! Apart from easy availability, the Hyundai i20 comes packed with features– that is also appealing to today’s younger generation.

Here is looking at why the Hyundai i20 is among the best buys in the used car segment. 

Hyundai i20 – Available Models

Hyundai i20
First Gen Hyundai i20 - 2008 to 2010

The Hyundai i20 had a poor market response to its first-generation cars launched in 2008; then it went through a complete redesign for its next facelift model that was launched in 2012. Apart from a price cut, Hyundai released this i20 model with a more powerful 1.4-litre diesel engine – and a host of design features that positioned the car as a premium hatchback(for the aspiring Indians). 

First Gen Hyundai i20 Facelift - 2012 to 2014
First Gen Hyundai i20 Facelift - 2012 to 2014

The year 2014 saw the launch of the second-generation of Hyundai i20 – with the Hyundai Elite i20 that is still among the largest-selling cars coming out of the Hyundai stables. Along with a swanky-looking interior, new outer design, and a vast number of variants to choose from. Among the popular ones was the Hyundai Elite i20 that was positioned as a sporty-looking and adventure-loving car that could be driven in India’s rugged interiors.

Check out: Used i20 to buy in Delhi-NCR

Hyundai i20 – Used Car Buyer Guide

Who is the target demographic for the Hyundai i20?

This car model operates in the premium hatchback market segment – and is very appealing to young and working individuals (in their mid or late twenties) who are looking to settle in life or start a family. Most of its current customers are from major Indian cities or from second-tier or Tier-3 cities – which includes customers looking for second-hand cars for city driving.

Second Gen Hyundai i20 Elite - 2014 to 2019
Second Gen Hyundai i20 Elite - 2014 to 2019

Do you want a car that can be double up for city driving as well as for weekend getaways?

Then the Hyundai Elite i20 is a popular choice – because of its comfortable seating of up to 5 adults and the automatic gearbox option. The Elite Active i20 model is also a major seller in the Indian rural market – thanks to its low maintenance costs and sturdy build quality.

Hyundai Elite i20 is also popular among aspiring Indians looking for the comfort of any entry-level sedan because of its premium facilities and stylish design.

Buy: Used i20 Elite in Delhi NCR

Used Hyundai i20 – Pros and Cons

Before you decide on buying a used Hyundai i20, you need to know both its advantages and disadvantages. 

Following is a list of pros of the Hyundai i20

First, among its advantages is the comfortable seating space that this car offers. Take any used model, and you can easily fit three passengers in the rear seat of the car. Other positives include ample legroom, headroom along with height-adjustable seats in its top-end models.

If you are looking at good boot space in the Elite i20 model, check out some variants that allow you to expand the boot – to over 1,000-litres – by folding the rear seats.

The Hyundai i20 is also packed with some great features that are difficult to find in any other used hatchback in its budget in the Indian market. Top-end petrol variants come with six airbags, all-automatic power windows, alloy wheels, and rear parking sensors are just some of the features that you can check out in your used car model.

Check out: Used i20 in Mumbai

High fuel efficiency or mileage is another reason why you should go for the Hyundai i20 car. While the automatic petrol variants give a mileage of 15-kmpl, the manual petrol and diesel variants are very fuel-efficient at 18.5-kmpl and 21.9-kmpl, respectively. 

What about the overall ride quality of the Hyundai i20 – particularly on city roads?

That is good primarily due to the upgrading of the rear end in the Elite i20. This offers a good ride quality when driving at high speeds – and feels less bouncy than its predecessor.

The i20 also maintains a decent quality ride over bad roads – including minimum road noise and a stable suspension system (even on jittery roads).

When it comes to resale value in the used car, the deprecation ratio matters a lot in any car. The Hyundai i20 performs well with a low rate of yearly deprecation. On an average, for a well-maintained model, you can expect a reduction of around 40,000/- yearly towards deprecation. 

Not everything can be perfect, the same in the case of Hyundai i20. There are cons, and we have prepared a list for you. 

Despite the market popularity of the Hyundai Elite i20 (automatic transmission model), there is no automatic diesel variant of the Hyundai i20. You really wish for the 1.4-litre engine automatic diesel model for the Hyundai i20 model – that is only available with the petrol engine. 

Another major negative aspect of the Hyundai i20 is despite its sporty look; the car is not the easiest to drive or manoeuvre around – like the latest Volkswagen Polo or the Maruti Baleno. Some of the primary reasons are an inconsistent steering wheel, higher body roll, and a clutch that is hard in nature. 

So, if you are looking for a zippy and spirited long drive, then you may be in for a little disappointment. The used i20 car is best limited to city driving – with its strong suspension that is designed to handle potholes and bad roads.

Hyundai i20 – The Ideal model and what to check for before buying a used car?

Thanks to its sheer numbers and high production, you will find a used i20 in the second-hand market quickly. While the first generation of the Hyundai i20 (the year 2009 to 2014) is cheap, it is best to avoid those. Also, avoid any models fitted with CNG or LPG kits – as they are not factory fitted by Hyundai and can only get done at a third-party outlet.  

The automatic variant of the i20 Elite petrol car is an excellent choice – if you are mostly going to use it on city roads. If you are running over 2,000 kms every month, then the manual diesel variant of the Elite i20 is the right choice. Overall, opt for the 2014 i20 Elite model that is in good condition – and is fitted with modern interiors and features.

There are some additional things that you should look for in your used i20 model before purchasing, here is the list.

1. Hard clutch plates

You will usually spot this problem only in i20 models that have run over 50,000 kilometres. Just take your car for a short drive in your city – and you will be able to detect the hard-clutch plates. Having said that, you can fix this problem for a cost of less than 5,000/-.

2.Steering-related issues

Steering-related problems have been common in the first-generation i20 model – and keep coming back despite repairs. While the repair cost for any steering-related problem is not much, a replacement of the entire steering assembly can pinch you as much as 30,000/-.

As a precaution, test drive the i20 model with many U-turns to check if your steering is smooth and easy to handle.

Defective seals

Used i20 models also have defective window and door seals that can cause water seep problems during the rainy seasons. To be on the safe side, remove all the seals near the door (including the boot hatch) and check if there have been any leaks or corrosion.

The good part about the Hyundai i20 is that its spare parts are easily available at their service centres – or even at any authorised workshop in your city. Add to that, Hyundai also organises car servicing camps regularly where you can get your used i20 car checked for any problems.

Our Recommendation

While buying a second-hand car always remember about the long-running life, we would highly recommend an Elite i20 that is not more than three years old.  In addition to a better look and interiors, you can get a better resale value with the Elite i20. 

For instance, at CARS24 you can purchase a three-year-old i20 petrol model for around 5 lakhs while a diesel model will cost slightly higher at 6 lakhs – plus or minus 5% depending on the condition of the vehicle. If you are looking for a cheaper car, then the i20 Active would be a better option – this opportunity is very rare in the used car market.  

In summary, the used Hyundai i20 is a good buy for young city dwellers – with the post-2014 models offering good value for its resale price. However, if you are simply looking for a car that offers a great driving experience, then it is better to go for i20 alternatives like the Honda Jazz or the Maruti Baleno.

Recently Added Cars to Buy

Other Blogs


Popular Cities to Sell Car