Hyundai Reina 1.4 GL AT/MT First Impressions
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2019 Hyundai Reina 1.4 GL First Impressions

The Hyundai Reina's competitors better watch out.

After making its official debut a day after Kia Philippines‘ relaunching under Ayala, we finally got our hands on Hyundai’s all-new Reina which will soon rival its Kia Soluto twin, as well as class stalwarts such as the Mitsubishi Mirage G4 and Suzuki DZire. Given their bargain basement pricing, even when compared to its key rivals, is the Hyundai Reina priced just for the sake of ousting its Kia twin, or does it pack some serious value? Let’s find out.

The all-new Hyundai Reina Media Test Drive is the culminating event of the official launch of the said car in the Philippines. It was held last Tuesday, Feb. 12 and the flag off was at the Hyundai in Cainta and it concluded in the wind farms Pililla, Rizal. It was an 80 km one-way drive which took about 2 hours which was indeed very scenic. It covered 4 places, namely: Cainta, Antipolo, Tanay, and Pililla.

It was an excellent chance for the media to evaluate the car from Hyundai Cainta up to windmills of Pililla, Rizal and each of the 14 cars were asked to answer the question “Why is the Hyundai Reina the right one for you?” with a photo contest. Participants had the chance to find their photography venue for each of the scenic areas in the 3 locations concluding in the Bulauan Floating Restaurant.

2019 Hyundai Reina 1.4 GL Exterior

2019 Hyundai Reina 1.4 GL Exterior

On the outside, the Reina carries a more sophisticated look with its Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language. The front fascia is characterized by a large hexagonal grille that’s flanked by a pair of aggressive-looking multi-reflector headlights. The side profile looks more conventional, though it doesn’t mean it is boring. In fact, it’s a lot better proportioned than literally all of its rivals at this price. The side and rear fascia, however, do share a lot in common with its Kia Soluto twin, and that’s no bad thing either.

2019 Hyundai Reina 1.4 GL Interior

Stepping inside reveals a spacious interior, even more than the Mitsubishi Mirage G4 and Suzuki DZire, thanks to this car having the longest wheelbase in its class. The rear seats even have ISOFIX child seat anchor points, which is now becoming a necessity when it comes to child safety. Speaking of safety and equipment, it comes well-equipped for its price. Power and door locks windows on all four doors, ABS with EBD, as well as dual SRS airbags up front.

Under the hood of the Hyundai Reina is a 1.4-liter inline-4 petrol engine that produces 94 hp and 132 Nm of torque, which makes it the most powerful among its competitors.

With a choice of a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic, the Hyundai Reina’s manners were commendable going up the slopes. The 4-speed automatic was geared towards economy rather than outright performance, so it did beg for more power during those situations. With the 5-speed manual, things were much more spritely.

Handling-wise, the Reina handled much better than most of its competitors that felt like they were built down to a cost. Utilizing the PB platform from the older Accent meant that the Reina’s chassis came from a car at a higher segment. This is also evident with the tires, which are much wider than those found in its key rivals, providing better grip through corners. Refinement was also top-notch, with less road, wind, and engine noise compared to most of its rivals.

Alas, our time with the Hyundai Reina was quite short for the trip. Overall though, I think that the Hyundai Reina has the basic elements of a good and reliable car, combining good design, performance, safety, space, practicality, and excellent driving dynamics. Starting at only P598,000, it seems to be an excellent choice for a practical everyday use car in the metropolis. Interestingly, you may also purchase the Hyundai Reina through O Shopping.

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