Hyundai has unveiled its pure-electric Kona EV overnight, with up to 150kW of power and a 470km range.
The battery-powered compact SUV will be offered in two trim levels: short- and long-range. In short-range guise, the car is powered by a 99kW/395Nm electric motor, good for a 9.3 second sprint to 100km/h and 167km/h flat out.
It draws on a 39.2kWh lithium-ion polymer battery, which takes 6 hours 10 minutes to charge on a standard wall socket, or around 55 minutes to 80 per cent using a 100kW fast charger. Hyundai is shooting for a 300km range in WLTP testing.
Jumping to the long-range model boosts power to 150kW, while torque remains unchanged at 395Nm. The 100km/h sprint takes just 7.4 seconds, with the same 167km/h top speed.
Instead of a 39kWh unit, the long-range is fitted with a 64kWh lithium-ion polymer battery, good for 470km of range. By way of comparison, a Tesla Model S P75D claims around 460km on a full charge.
Although it's been tweaked compared to the regular Kona, the EV doesn't look like a science project. The grille has been closed over – with no engine to cool, it's unnecessary – and the front bumper redesigned, but the basic look of the car is largely the same. Hyundai has fitted unique aero-style wheels, and a range of seven exterior colours (with contrasting roof, naturally) will be offered.
Behind the wheel, there are a few electric-only touches slotted into the same basic architecture as the internal-combustion Kona's cabin. There's a brand new digital display for the driver, and the conventional gear-shifter has been replaced with a set of buttons on the console.
Along with the aforementioned safety systems, the car will come with adaptive cruise control with stop/go functionality, as in the i30, a feature that currently isn't available for the regular Kona range.
Both driver and passenger sit in heated, cooled and electrically-adjustable seats, while a heated steering wheel is optional.
The company says its new head-up display is larger and brighter than before, and provides information about the autonomous emergency braking, lane-keep assist, blind-spot warning, and driver-attention warning.
The Kona EV will be in Australia from late-2018 or early-2019 – we'll keep you posted when Hyundai is more specific with timing.
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