BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
Subscribe to Top Gear magazine
Sign up to our Top Gear Magazine

Here are five things you need to know about the new Hyundai Kona

Hyundai goes brave with its second-gen Kona styling. We end up with a strange desire to watch RoboCop

Published: 07 Mar 2023

The Hyundai Kona has always been an interestingly styled car – and yes, we are aware that that is practically the dictionary definition of sitting on the fence. The first-gen arrived on our shores back in 2018 with much plastic cladding and slightly different faces for the internal combustion and all-electric versions.

Heck, there was even an Iron Man special edition in 2019 that’s probably best forgotten about. 

Advertisement - Page continues below

The facelift in late 2020 didn’t make things any less controversial either (which we were rather thankful for actually) and now there’s an all-new second generation that should arrive later this year.

What you see above is the all-electric iteration, because Hyundai says that this Kona was designed as an EV first and a combustion/hybrid crossover second. So, here are five more things you need to know ahead of its launch.

1. That styling makes it slippery

Hyundai’s on a design roll lately, and that continues with the second-gen Kona EV. We’ve got RoboCop vibes from the “seamless horizon lamp” stretching across the front. Although it’s not just about looks, those strong lines have a purpose – the new Kona has a drag coefficient of 0.27 thanks to “active air flaps”.

2. It’s a bit bigger

The new Kona is 150mm longer, 25mm wider and the same height as before. Hyundai’s found 60mm in the wheelbase for added cabin room. It’s still a strict five-seater, but the front seats are 30 per cent thinner to boost rear legroom and a flat floor means whoever’s sitting in the middle won’t suffer.

Advertisement - Page continues below

3. It’s a bit posher too

The previous car’s rising centre console has been ditched for a floating dash that makes the cabin feel airier. Two 12.3-inch displays across the top provide the high-tech ambience you’d expect. Hyundai says its new “weightless” front seats are designed to cut fatigue – looking forward to trying those in a four-hour tailback.

4. It’s all about the details

Ever been stuck at night trying to charge up for the last dash home? Someone at Hyundai has, because the new Kona comes with a heated charging flap (so it doesn't freeze and shut in winter) and there’s even a light there, so no more standing about with your phone in your mouth trying to point the torch in the right direction of the socket.

5. You should be able to believe in the range

The new Kona offers two flavours of powertrain, with 48kWh/154bhp and 65kWh/215bhp – the latter offering 304 miles of WLTP range and the former 212 miles. There’s battery preconditioning for better performance in winter weather, smart regen and V2L functionality so you can run all sorts of electronics off the car battery too. There’s no word on max charging speeds just yet, but the architecture is 400V and the previous Kona EV maxed out at around 75kW.

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

More from Top Gear

See more on Kona

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine