A few weeks ago, we saw images and details about the redesigned 2022 Hyundai Kona. Now, it’s the new-look Kona Electric’s turn to show its face.
In addition to fresh styling, Hyundai is adding more technology, safety and practicality to the battery-powered variant of the hugely popular sub-compact SUV (120,000 units sold globally since launching in 2018).
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A Bit of Tesla
The changes naturally reflect those of the gasoline model while maintaining the distinctive character of the Kona Electric. Highlights include new headlights, daytime running lights and taillights, plus revised front and rear bumpers. The front fascia no longer tries to simulate a grille and instead sports a clean, smooth surface not unlike what we see on Tesla cars. The charging port is still mounted asymmetrically.
On the sides, sharp new wheel designs are part of the mix, while the wheel arches retain a body-coloured treatment. Vertical air inlets in front of the wheel arch claddings enhance aerodynamics, substantially reducing turbulence in the front wheelhouse area, Hyundai claims.
The updated Kona Electric is also 25 millimetres longer and offers several new paint options, although those vary from one market to another, so let’s wait for Canadian specifications.
Inside, the 7.0-inch digital instrument cluster expands to 10.25 inches, while the centre touchscreen is available in 8- and 10.25-inch sizes. The standard display comes with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. BlueLink connected services, which enable remote control and monitoring of certain vehicle functions including charging, have been enhanced with extra navigation functionality, among other things.
Same Motor and Battery
Nothing changes as far as performance is concerned. The 2022 Hyundai Kona Electric still relies on a 150-kW (201-hp) electric motor and a 64-kWh battery providing a range of 415 kilometres. That’s better than most of today’s EVs, but will it still be the case in 2-3 years?
Of course, it’s possible to get longer range than the official number advertised by Hyundai. To wit: three production models set a new range record of 1,026 kilometres on a single battery charge at the Lausitzring in Germany in August.
By the way, the battery can regain 80 percent of its full capacity in 54 minutes using a level-3 fast-charging station (100 kW). With a level-2 power source at home (7.2 kW/240 V), the full process takes 9.5 hours.
Last but not least, Hyundai has made improvements to the suite of SmartSense safety and driver assistance features on the Kona Electric. For example, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist and Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist don’t just offer warnings to drivers, they also implement the brakes where necessary. Further new safety features include Safe Exit Warning and Rear Seat Alert—something parents in particular will be happy about.
The 2022 Hyundai Kona will arrive in Canadian showrooms next spring. Expect the new Kona Electric to follow shortly after.