Hyundai Kona Electric Facelift 2021 Review: Cheapest UK EV with 300-mile range | WhichEV
Since we last reviewed the car a few months ago. The biggest changes are at the front where, before you could still see the vestiges of the konas fossil fuel heritage in a front grille. This now has been entirely smoothed out to make a much more streamlined. Look. The side lights are subtly different too both front and at the rear. The plastic wheel, arches, have been replaced by body colored ones, which subtracts in the rugged crossover look but adds a smidgen of extra class, and that is mostly it on the external changes. It still looks like a small hatchback rather than the small suv hyundai claims. It is the bigger changes since we last reviewed the kona are in the trims available, where once there was se premium and premium sc, the se connect premium and the ultimate we have here. All cars have adaptive cruise control. A 10.25 inch media screen with connected, sat nav 17 inch, alloys and rear parking sensors with camera. The premium trim adds wireless phone charging front parking, sensors, more safety features, heated steering, wheel and front seats and keyless entry. The ultimate further adds ventilated front seats with electric seat adjustment, heated rear seats head up display a sunroof and leather upholstery. There are lots of color choices, starting with a basic light: blue theyre, reds, darker blues, blacks, grays and white, ranging in price from 300 to 565 pounds. This car is cyber gray, a 565 pound option. There are no wheel choices, but the standard 17 inch alloys are a new design and reasonably striking.
There are still two engine options with the kona ‘ kilowatt hour battery with 136 ps motor and 64 kilowatt hour with 204 ps. The lesser option is only available with the se connect the premium can have either, and the ultima only has the most powerful drivetrain. The most notable change here is that hyundai has lowered its pricing structure, so the premium with more powerful engine is now available for under 35k and still gets a uk government plug in grant, but well talk about that later in the review. First lets make use of that keyless entry, as you can see. As i approach the wing mirror is open, but that doesnt actually unlock the car. You have to press this button to do that. This is quite a good feature because it it doesnt kind of hunt like some of the other keyless entry systems, weve seen where it kind of opens and closes as you stand in the proximity. So we rather like this. We think its got the right balance lets. Take a look inside hyundai hasnt made significant changes to the interior of the kona, its still rather sober and no nonsense. Like other hyundais, the se connect and premium come with black cloth seating, whereas the ultimate we have here uses black leather. The driver and passenger seat have electronic adjustment on the ultimate, but the sc connect and premium seats are mechanical, only theyre heated on the premium and the ultimate adds ventilation.
The ultima also has rear heated seats apart from the middle one. These seats are comfortable enough and theres plenty of headroom thanks to the tallness of this car. So you get a couple of cup holders. You can see this front. One is a bit bigger than the one on the back handy. I guess if you have different size cups underneath this flap here is a wireless phone charger and youll see. It is actually big enough to fit a full size phone and there is a usb type, a port as well theres, a large cubby underneath the armrest theres. Also, this second tier underneath the central console, which is a little bit strange at the front there you see its got a charging port under a flat which i can hardly reach and then on this side here youll see that its got a standard, 12 volt car Adapter, which supports up to 180 watts, so it could power some quite powerful devices. The konas glovebox is actually a pretty decent size, which is handy because you can see the documentation is massive, as we already mentioned. The ultimate edition also has a sunroof, its not panoramic, but its quite nice theres, this manual blind to actually open the window a bit and then, if you want to make it completely to the air, this button is how you do that: theres, a really quite decent Amount of headroom in the back as well, however, the knee room is really quite bad.
This front seat is positioned for someone of average size and im, also of average size sitting in the back, and i dont have much knee room. So really these rear seats are for children, not really for adults. For long journeys, the central sea is actually narrower than normal, so youd have to have quite a skinny child, possibly even a two dimensional child to fit in this space. However, it does have a secondary function. You can drop this down, you get a couple of cup holders and an arm rest here. What you dont get, though, are any air vents for the rear passengers or usb charging ports, and this is the top range model. So none of them have it. However, at least they will have some magazine holders for their copies of attack on titan or whatever. It is kids read these days. So really, this is a car for two adults and a family with children. You get iso fix points on the outside rear seats, just reach under there to get to them. We wont be able to fit young tarquin in the front because there arent any isofix points there. Although hyundai calls the kona an suv actually when it gets to boot space, its much more like a conventional hatchback, this is 332 liters, which is very similar to most hatchbacks. You do get this little bit of extra space under here, theres, a kind of nice little compartmentalized area and theres a bit more underneath where theres some emergency supplies.
Of course you can actually remove this and put the rear seats down. You get the typical 4016 because its pretty easy to actually put the rear seats down from from the back. This opens things out to 1116 liters, which is almost identical to the vauxhall corsore, which again shows that this is a hatchback, not really an suv. However, it is very flat, but youre still going to be pretty lucky to get a double mattress from ikea. In the back of this car being an asian car, it does have a hook for shopping or putting takeaway on one thing, we always notice with korean cars is theres great attention to detail, and some nice little features like this one. Here you see theres a little hook there just to hold the seat belt in place when the seat goes forward, backward, nothing, special, but actually really handy. These are the buttons that heat the rear seats, but only in the ultimate version. One area where the hyundai kona has always excelled is in range with the ‘ kilowatt hour battery you get 189 miles and with this 64 kilowatt hour battery, you get 300 miles of range thats, really pretty excellent. With the price change the 64 kilowatt hour premium, kona electric offers the most range of any electric car currently available. That still qualifies for the uk, grant theres a ccs port hidden at the front of the car, providing combined ac and dc charging on a seven kilowatt.
Ac wall box, the 64 kilowatt hour battery, will take nine hours and 15 minutes to charge full from empty, and a ‘ kilowatt hour takes 6 hours and 10 minutes theres. Also, a 10.5 kilowatt ac charging, which takes 7.5 hours dc charging, is supported up to 100 kilowatts, so replenishing 80 for either battery takes 47 minutes. If you only have a 50 kilowatt dc supply that increases to 64 minutes for the 64 kilowatt hour battery, but only to 48 minutes for the ‘ kilowatt hour battery, showing that the ‘ kilowatt hour battery actually doesnt get the full 100 kilowatt charging that the larger Battery does, overall, though, this is a really cheap car to run on a 14p per kilowatt hour supply. The larger battery is 2.89 p per mile, whereas the smaller one is still a very frugal. 2.99 per mile lets talk about the general controls of this car, starting with the steering wheel, pretty standard wheel absolutely round, unlike some of the wheels weve seen recently on the left, weve got controls for media volume. Voice control on the right are the controls for the adaptive cruise control. This car has got on the right hand, side youve got the windscreen wiper controls and one of the paddles for altering the level of regenerative braking and on the left side. Youve got another regenerative. Braking paddle and the controls for the lights and indicators. There are a few more buttons here on the right for things like operating the hud, which well talk about in a second parking sensors traction control on the left hand, side of the steering wheel is a start.
Stop button for starting and stopping the dashboard is entirely digital, but it does have analog dials kind of faked on screen. The miles per hour is in the middle, but it also shows you that, on the left hand, side as well and then on the right hand, side youve got another dial which shows the level of power delivery or regenerative. Braking and youve got things like remaining miles. On the left and actually what your power delivery means in terms of miles per kilowatt hour in the middle, this ultimate version car has this rather nice head up display, which gives you a few things like speed, limit and warnings about lane departure its got a bevy Of buttons down the bottom here, this one operates the drive modes between sport, normal and eco youve got auto hold, you can turn off and on the rear parking camera and these buttons on the ends. Let you configure heating and ventilation for the passenger and driver seats. Theres, a big selection of buttons here for operating the air conditioning pretty easy to operate this when youre driving. However, its worth noting this is not a zoned air conditioning, its just a single zone. Another change with the new trim levels is that all cars now get this 10.25 inch central media control display. So youve got a map view. If you hit the navigation view, you can enter destinations, theres even access to address book. You can set up a favorite button.
This one isnt set up, but you could maybe choose ev. So now, when you press um press that button, you get this nice selection of things on screen these buttons here for moving through media. If you click on the radio button, you get a dab, radio and theres, also fm available. You can connect to media as well its worth, noting that this car supports both apple carplay and android, auto, which is always handy, not all cars. Do that bmw are you listening? If you go to setup, you get a nice row of icons, probably not going to go through. All of them. Blu link is the one that gives you connectivity for the hyundai app which useful for things like remote charging. If you actually go to the vehicle section, we can do things like change the driver, convenience settings. We can look at the look at the drive modes. You see eco, normal and sport there. You can actually do your own custom ones, eco vehicle for smart recuperation, which is kind of useful means. You dont, actually use the paddles in that setting and, of course, with this, car youve got a head up display, and this is where you reconfigure it. You can choose what goes on screen and also adjust it for different height of drivers, and here you can also customize what that digital instrument cluster does, which again kind of handy, if you like that, got buttons on either side which, for operating things like the volume Control and also for changing channel on your radio as well the 64 kilowatt hour version of the kerner has 204 ps, which is the same amount of power as a launch version of the id3 and iv from vx volkswagen.
There is a lot of power to put through the front wheels and you do get torque steer in fact, weve even managed to slip the wheels in the wet when were accelerating hard. The 204 ps kona is quite fast, taking 7.9 seconds to hit 62 miles per hour. Although the 136 ps car is noticeably slower, taking 9.7 seconds to hit 62 miles per hour, even in sport mode, the hyundai kerner isnt as involving to drive as say the bmw, i3, the mini electric, or indeed the vw id3. However, its still a good driving experience for a car that isnt really meant to be sports orientated its definitely one of the more enjoyable non tesla evs ive, driven its also reassuringly planted on motorways, which is welcome. Considering that this cars range abilities make it very viable for long journeys here we go lets take these suckers out. Okay were now going at motorway speeds and its fitting perfectly natural at motorway speeds. You get a decent amount of safety tech, even with the sc connect. Kona, this includes autonomous, braking with pedestrian recognition as well as forward collision warning and lane keep assist theres adaptive cruise control available across the range a welcome feature in these days of heavy traffic and average speed zones. The premium trim adds intelligent speed, warnings and blind spot detection. You also get rear cross traffic collision warnings, which is for when youre backing out of a parking space, the ultimate version doesnt add any safety features on top of that, but actually we cant think of any other safety features.
It could add other than full autonomous driving. This excellent safety spec is great. News now were about to talk about the new pricing differences with the new trim levels. Like many manufacturers, hyundai reacted quickly to the uk governments change in its grant policy and thats made the color electric even more attractive than it was before. The basic sc connect corner starts at just under 28 000 pounds that is 2 grand less than it used to be. The premium is just over 29 000 pounds with a ‘ kilowatt hour battery and 32 and a half thousand pounds with the 64 kilowatt hour battery. All these prices so far include that government two and a half thousand pound grant considering how well equipped the premium kerner electric is thats a great price for a car with 300 miles of range and remember you get a full complement of safety features and even heated Front seats, the ultimate version im driving now, however, doesnt qualify for that uk government grant and at over 37 000 pounds feels a bit expensive, yes, its incredibly well equipped and still beats both the tesla model, three standard range plus and the vw id3 in range terms, But if you are going to spend that kind of money, we would suggest you go 3700 pounds further and opt for the tesla model. 3 standard range plus. However, the insurance groups for the kerner are pretty reasonable. They range from 20 for the se, connect to 24 for the premium and ultimate for comparison that tesla model 3 standard range plus is in group 48.
Like most korean cars. The warranty is excellent. The basic warranty is five years for unlimited miles, but the battery warranty is eight years for 125 000 miles and 70 capacity. You also get a 12 year anti corrosion warranty, which is really handy on a rainy day like this overall hyundai has reacted really well to the change in the government grant and the arrival of more electric vehicle choices for under thirty thousand pounds. We still prefer the vw id3 over the kona, but if you have more, like thirty two and a half thousand pounds to spend on an ev, the 64 kilowatt hour premium is pretty hard to beat the hyundai kernel. Electric was already a great ev and in facelift guys its even better. The ultimate version we have here is supremely well equipped, but a bit pricey because it doesnt get the government plug in grant anymore. Our pick is a premium 64 kilowatt hour. Its just as fast has a similarly great specification and, of course it still has that 300 mile range its an excellent car for the money highly recommended.