Hyundai Kona Electric SUV: prices, specs and release date

Hyundai’s electric SUV will be available online from 2 August, costing from £29,495

The Hyundai Kona Electric SUV will be available to order from 2 August, costing £29,495 before the £4,500 Plug-In Car Grant (PICG) is deducted. Early adopters will need to pick one up online via Hyundai’s Click to Buy website, before it arrives in dealerships in 2019.

It's powered by a choice of electric powertrains, and Hyundai claims this is the first small SUV to be so-powered. It will be joined at the end of the year by the Kia Niro EV, sharing a near-identical powertrain.

Hyundai Kona Electric performance, range and charging times

Hyundai claims that a range of up to 300 miles will be achievable by the long-range Kona Electric model with a 64kWh battery, with its 150kW giving a 0-62mph time of 7.6 seconds. A second version will be offered with a smaller 39kWh battery and a 100kW electric motor, enough for an effective range of 194 miles. They have a top speed of 96 and 104mph respectively. The Nissan Leaf – the Kona's main rival – has a range of up to 217 miles, while the smaller Hyundai Ioniq Electric hatchback can manage 174 miles.

Get the latest electric and hybrid car news, reviews and analysis on DrivingElectric.com

The Kona Electric’s batteries will charge to 80% in 75 minutes via a 50kW CCS DC fast-charger, while using the 7.2kW on-board charger and an AC supply will take nine hours and 35 minutes for the larger battery, or six hours and 10 minutes for the smaller. The car will also be chargeable from compatible domestic supplies using an included charge cable.

The regenerative braking system (which charges the batteries by collecting energy produced during braking) can be adjusted using paddles behind the steering wheel to suit the driver’s tastes. There’s no gearbox per se, but the Kona features a ‘shift-by-wire’ system to make operation of the car’s powertrain as simple as driving a traditional automatic.

Design and interior

The Kona Electric looks broadly similar to the standard Hyundai Kona SUV, although there are some new styling elements to help set the eco-friendly model apart, the most obvious being an aerodynamic blanked-off grilled (there’s no radiator to worry about) and unique 17-inch wheels. The Kona Electric is also slightly longer and lower than the standard car, a by-product of its new all-electric underpinnings.

There's the same focus on personalisation as the standard Kona, with a selection of body colours and contrasting roof colours to choose from. There are plenty of options inside, too, with a range of cloth and leather available, including a three-tone blue-and-grey option.

Inside, there’s also a new centre console for the car’s EV-specific drive buttons. There’s a new seven-inch screen mounted between the conventional dials that displays a range of information, including battery charge level, energy flow and the selected driving mode.

Hyundai Kona Electric trim levels

The range starts with the Kona Electric SE 39kWh, which gets a seven-inch infotainment display with DAB radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility and a rear-view camera. Rear parking sensors are also thrown in, as well as Bluetooth, a leather steering wheel, automatic lights and climate control.

Upgrade to Premium 39kWh (from £30,870 before the PICG) and there are LED rear lights, front parking sensors, automatic wipers, an eight-inch display with sat nav, wireless smartphone charging and a Krell stereo with eight speakers. The Premium trim is also available with the option of the 64kWh battery pack and 150kW motor upgrade.

Sitting at the top of the range is the Kona Electric Premium SE 64kWh (£36,295 before PICG), with auto-dipping LED headlights, a head-up display, leather seat facings, heated and ventilated front seats and a heated steering wheel.

Six colours are available, including the no-cost Galactic Grey metallic, as well as Chal White, Tangerine Comet, Ceramic Blue, Pulse Red and Acid Yellow (all costing £565) and a £420 two-tone roof available on the Premium and Premium SE.

Safety

In keeping with industry trends and tightening regulations, Hyundai is offering a large range of active safety features on the Kona Electric – although some features are optional. These include (but aren’t limited to) adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go functionality, automatic emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection, lane-keeping assistance, blind-spot monitoring and speed-limit warnings. Adaptive LED headlights will be offered as an option.

Hyundai Kona Electric price and on-sale date

The Hyundai Kona Electric is available to buy online using Hyundai’s Click to Buy website from 2 August, before arriving across the bricks-and-mortar Hyundai dealership network in 2019. Prices (before the £4,500 government Plug In Car Grant is deducted) start from £29,495 for the Kona Electric SE, while the Premium 39kWh is £30,870. Upgrading the latter to the 64kWh powertrain takes the price up to £33,995, while the range-topping Premium SE 64kWh is £36,295.

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