Car review – Hyundai Kona Electric 64 kWh

Thrifty and trendy as ever

After less than three years, the electric Kona is given a facelift to bring it back in line with the competition. Technically, however, it remains unchanged.

 

New looks, same tech

The facelift is marked by an updated, closed front end, while new wheels and colours were also introduced. At the back, the changes are limited and inside, too, the difference is hardly noticeable, except for the centre console.  

Technically, things remain the same. The Kona still offers a choice of two battery packs and engine outputs: 39.2kWh and 136hp, or 64kWh and 204hp. The latter version claims a range of 484 kilometres – which is excellent and in any case much more reassuring than the 305 kilometres of the 39kWh version.

The 204hp and 395Nm electric motor make it a very nippy EV. From 0 to 100 kph takes 7.9 seconds (9.9 s for the 39.2kWh version) and the top speed of 167 km/h is easily achieved. However, if you adopt a sporty driving style, the tyres find it difficult to cope with the torque and start spinning.

 

Stronger competition

For three years, the Kona EV held a unique position and almost had the kingdom to itself. It offered the driving range of a Jaguar I-Pace and cost half as much.

Today, the situation is completely different. There's the Peugeot e-2008, the Opel Mokka-e, the Citroën ë-C4 and the Volkswagen ID.3, among others, which are cheaper and/or just as capable. Even the Skoda Enyaq iV with 77 kWh battery is not more expensive, even though it is a lot bigger than the Kona.

The latter costs at least € 45,499 including VAT. Fortunately, the standard equipment is very complete and Hyundai compensates the high purchase price with a nice fleet discount, so the lease price is competitive.

 

Efficiency champ

In reality, we easily reached 400 kilometres during our test, and even more than the driving range, we were surprised by the electricity consumption. At no more than 15 kWh/100 km, that's particularly low. 

The battery can be charged from 10 to 100 percent in 9 hours and 15 minutes (7.4 kW) on single-phase AC. Three-phase AC shortens the cycle to 6 hours and 50 minutes (11 kW). Fast charging with direct current can be done with up to 100 kW. 

A nice driving range, decent performance, low consumption and a generous equipment should justify the rather high list price. In terms of TCO this Kona scores very well, but the same goes for its direct competitors.

    • Checked Icon

      + Very low power consumption

    • Checked Icon

      + Driving range

    • Checked Icon

      + Generous equipment

    • Checked Icon

      -Lack of grip during acceleration -High list price