Today we are driving a Hyundai Kona Electric for a long term review! We had already had the pleasure of trying Kona Electric last year, this year, also thanks to a slight restyling, we wanted to try it again with a longer and more thorough test drive.
Hyundai Kona was launched almost five years ago, and just one year later, the all-electric version arrives in 2018. Kona immediately established itself in the segment as one of the best electric cars, thanks above all to its concreteness and incredible efficiency. In fact, thanks to its 64kWh battery it is able to travel over 450km of autonomy, real! We are testing the XClass version in its latest restyling of 2021. The major aesthetic changes are in the front, which denotes even more the electric nature of this B-SUV. In fact, the imitation of the air intake grille disappears, leaving room for a completely smooth panel. On the front we now find, in addition to the LED headlights, only the charging socket; always very comfortable in this position, even if experience has shown that in the event of a rear-end collision it can cause some issues.
The color of the test sample is Sunset Red (mica) with a black contrasting roof costing € 750. The color with which Kona EV is offered at no extra charge is a light blue called “Dive in Jeju”, the rest of the colors are always offered at the same price. Kona EV is equipped as standard with a 32A (7.4kw) single-phase AC charger, as an option, for the leaner models, it is possible to equip the three-phase charger up to 11kw. With such a large battery it is an accessory that I personally consider essential if you use the public charging network a lot.
The latter allows you to recharge the battery from 0 to 100 in less than 6 real hours. Different speech for the 7.4kw AC charger, as to reach its maximum power it must maintain a double amperage compared to the three-phase. This basically leads to almost never reaching 7.4kw of charging power, thus extending the times and not a little. It changes instead for fast charging in direct current, with the restyling it goes from 75kw to 100kw and allows in about 40 minutes to go from 10% to 80%.
The passenger compartment has remained almost the same, rigid plastics everywhere but of excellent quality and impeccably assembled: no imperfections or creaking. The central tunnel, different from all other “non-EV” Kona, is high and very roomy. In fact, we find many compartments and the drive selector is reduced to the bone thus taking up very little space. A very welcome novelty is the cockpit, now digital and generously sized. Ben 10.25 inches capable of offering much more information than in the past and with much more pleasant and changeable graphics depending on the driving mode selected.
The infotainment system remains the same as the previous generation. The most complete 10.25 “system with BlueLink, premium audio system, Carplay and Android Auto is fitted as standard in the test set-up. A truly state of the art system that is also very useful for using this electric car to the fullest. In fact, we find a lot of information regarding the nearby columns with hourly availability, telephone numbers and more. The car is also able to estimate, a priori, a charge time based on the infrastructure to which it will be connected and, if necessary, it is also possible to limit the charging power directly from the touch screen. The infotelematics system is also connected to the internet via a sim installed in the car and offers information on traffic, weather and points of interest. Then with the BlueLink application you can manage many aspects of Kona: from the interruption of the recharge, to the switching on of the air conditioner, passing through the closing and opening of windows and doors. The possibility of always having the remaining autonomy on the screen is also very useful.
The resolution of the connection problem with CarPlay that I encountered last year should be noted. This year the test was much more thorough, in fact I was able to travel more than 3000km aboard this Kona. All the sensations of the previous test drive have been confirmed, consumption is very low and by limiting the speed it is possible to obtain very interesting autonomies even on the motorway. Thanks to its 204 horsepower front electric motor and 400nm of torque, the car is always very cheerful and at times fun. The weight, like any electric, can be felt and this obviously does not make the Kona EV a sports car, even if some satisfaction is still possible, especially if set in sport mode.
There are still the very comfortable paddles on the steering wheel that allow you to set the regenerative braking on different power levels, also allowing a one pedal drive by keeping the left paddle pressed. ADAS are always a guarantee, always reactive, but never too abrupt and / or invasive. In short, they are very well calibrated and will certainly facilitate the long journeys that this Kona EV allows you to do in total tranquility. Hyundai Kona Electric XClass is only available with 64kWh battery and 204 horsepower engine. The list price is € 49,850 and set up as the test car comes to € 51,300, net of state eco-incentives that are not present at the time of writing. In summary, the electric Kona confirms the excellent sensations it left us in the previous test drive, making it one of the best electric on the market.