What is it like on the inside?
All Ioniq 5 trim levels get the same pair of 12.3-inch screens in a single panel atop the dash. It’s very Mercedes-esque in look, and the materials aren’t far off either. Lots of light tones – nothing dark or oppressively sporty – and the right amount of minimalism.
The steering wheel features masses of buttons, which can be a trifle fiddly, but once you’ve got the displays how you want them, it’s relatively easy to learn and graphically crisp. The centre touchscreen works rapidly but you might be asking your passenger to hit some of the controls at the extremes of the display if you’re short in the arms. A physical home button would help no end.
We’d also prefer physical climate controls, but the ever-present touch-sensitive panel is at least preferable to hiding the air-con in a sub-menu.
Is it spacious?
Enormously. Because the Ioniq 5 rides on a platform designed never to contain an engine (unlike an electric Mercedes EQA, EQB or EQC, for instance) it can make a boon of that fact by stretching its wheelbase. The boot is a 531-litre giant, with a cellar of stowage beneath for your charging cable. If it’s likely to be buried by a shopping trip, there’s a 57-litre carry cot under the bonnet for the cable instead.
With three metres between the axles, the Ioniq 5 is roomier than a BMW 5 Series inside – and that’s before you start fiddling with the furniture.
Can I remove the seats like an old Renault Espace?
Nope, but you can shift the centre console. Hyundai calls this, dubiously, the Universal Island. Vom. Anyway, by sliding the armrest and its charging ports fore and aft by 140mm, you can either present more convenient charging ports to your screen-zombie children, or offer them more legroom to lose sweeties in. Once the ‘island’ has experienced some tectonic shift towards the back, the driver can elegantly sidestep out via the passenger door – handy if you’ve parked in a narrow street.
So, it’s welcoming, airy, feels extremely well-built and has all the tech you could ask for, with phone mirroring, over the air updates and even reclinable chairs that can flatten out like a sun-lounger… when you’re parked up. This is a car that uses ‘being electric’ for a serious packaging advantage inside.
You mentioned wing-mounted cameras earlier…
We did. These are among the goodies thrown at the Namsan Edition in an attempt to make the £54k+ price even remotely tolerable. We’re not sure about the appeal, ourselves: we have to assume that with enough time in the car you’d get used to looking at a pair of interior screens for look-signal-and-manoeuvreing, but they just don’t offer the depth of vision of a humble mirror and it takes longer to focus your eye on other road users. Nor is there any gain in range over the conventionally-winged car. Hmm.