Hyundai motors are known for their innovative and productive design. They came up with their first electric designed car in the year 1991 called the Sonata electric vehicle.
2019 in India witnessed first launch of their first production electric SUV- Hyundai Kona. “Dare to be different” is the ideology behind this car. It is a blend of style and performance crafted with cutting edge technology. Packed with power and efficiency, the Kona is available in 12 colours with an additional option of dual tone. Priced at 25.30 lakh (ex-showroom- India) it’s quite costly for a car of its segment.
The power-train is completely electric and fossil fuel free. Coupled with a magnet synchronous motor which delivers a power of 136bhp and 395Nm, and a 39.2kWh lithium-ion battery which offers a claim of 452 km, the Kona is quite the pleasing combination of performance and efficiency. The motor develops 40.27 kgm of torque distributed to the front wheels giving an acceleration of 0- 100 kmph in just 9.7 seconds. The battery system has liquid-cooling technology and the battery pack has high energy density. The battery can be charged through a 50Kw DC fast charger and reaches eighty percent in 57 minutes on a standard AC source of 7.2 KW and achieves a comparably slower charge of 100 per cent in six hours and ten minutes respectively. Map my India & Hyundai shook hands together to display mapped locations of Kona Electric compatible EV charging stations on the Hyundai Motor India Ltd website and as a mobile application.
Interiors are inspired from the Tuscon and the Creta respectively. The Kona Electric is equipped with plethora of equipment including Hyundai’s new Drive Mode Select, dual-zone climate control and 17.77cm touchscreen system. This is for the first time that a Hyundai car has got a Display Audio system that supported connected services such as smart-phone sync using Apple Car Play and Android Auto.
The Hyundai Kona SUV also comes with a wireless smart-phone charging pad. The multi-functional steering wheel gets mounted controls for operating Bluetooth, telephony and audio systems. An eight-speaker sound system from Krell comes as standard across the carline. Along with the above mentioned features, the SUV gets a 10-way electrically adjustable driver’s seat, ventilated front seats, leather upholstery, leather wrapped steering wheel, electric sunroof, paddle shifters for adjustable regenerative braking, keyless entry and go among several others.
The fresh electric inspired facia features a new signature ‘Cascading Grille’, bi-function LED headlamps with LED daytime running lights and sculpted bonnet at the front end.
All the regular bits and adornments include small fog lamps, skid plates and some seriously sharp crease lines. The sides are clad with black plastic and the flared fenders along with the five spoke diamond cut and seventeen inch high alloy wheels add a panache to side profile of the car. The chrome trims on the windows and the roof rails add finishing to the premium feel.
Compared to the conventional fuel Kona, the electric iteration of the SUV is longer and taller. The overall length of the Hyundai Kona electric stands at 4,180mm and its width and height measure 1,800mm and 1,570mm respectively. The SUV has a wheelbase of 2,600mm and a ground clearance of 170mm.
Safety has been of respectable value and the Kona has its set of bells and whistles. Ventilated discs adorn the front and rear sets of wheels. Dual front air-bags, additional side air bags, and curtain airbags complete the impact cushioning team for the passengers inside the car. The rest are your regulars on cars of such segment like the Hill-start assist control (HAC), Electronic stability control (ESC), Vehicle stability management (VSM), front parking sensors, brake assist, downhill brake control, and the other sensors and couplers that complete these complex initiations of artificial intelligence in automobiles.
A top rated five starrer in the Euro NCAP crash tests, the Kona scored eighty seven percent marks for passenger safety, a lower sixty two percent for pedestrian safety and sixty percent for the on board safety assist. The figures easily make it one of the safest cars in its segment.
Nomenclature would vary across different lands due to various reasons, a few of which include the “Kauai” in Portugal and “Encino” in China.
The company offers a three year warranty on the car and unlimited kilometres and an eight year warranty on the high voltage battery and one hundred and sixty thousand kilometres.
The timing is fantastic, the name and the package of looks and performance in the segment being targeted are to be feared but, yes here it comes – the catch, the flaw in the plan, the crack in the glass – is the pricing. Though Indians have happily paid many a limb for cars of beauty and impressive performance and even for the not so beautiful or powerful machines that swim in the overly flooded Indian market, a sum of twenty five lac (ex showroom) still raises a lot of eyebrows specially for a B-segment Korean made car. Should Hyundai have priced it at just a little lower say between Nineteen and twenty lac, the Kona would surely have given every B segment/Urban SUV a run for their money.