New Hyundai Kona Electric range drops to 279 miles

Following an over-estimation of the new Hyundai Kona EV’s range, corrected specifications have been announced

The range of the new Hyundai Kona Electric has been updated following ‘incorrect testing methodology’ carried out by an independent organisation. The range of the entry-level 39kWh model has fallen from 194 to 180 miles, while the flagship 64kWh version sees range drops by 33 miles to 279 miles. 

The organisation in charge of testing the Kona Electric accidentally tested the car incorrectly, and then approved the results it produced, leading to an over-estimation of the EV’s range.

• Hyundai Kona Electric vs Nissan Leaf

Despite the fall in range, prices for the new Kona EV remain unchanged starting at £29,495 – that’s £25,995 once the government’s £3,500 plug-in car grant is taken into account.

Three specifications are offered: SE, Premium and Premium SE. All models come as standard with a seven-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, rear parking sensors, a rear view camera, climate control and keyless entry. 

Premium models start at £30,870 before the grant is applied, and add privacy glass, LED taillights, front parking sensors, an eight-inch screen with navigation and an uprated Krell stereo. The 39kWh battery is fitted as standard but, for an extra £3,125, customers can spec the higher capacity 64kWh unit and a 201bhp electric motor.

The range-topping Premium SE models cost £36,295 (before the grant), and throws in LED headlights, a head-up display, leather seats that are heated and air-conditioned, and a heated steering wheel.

All Kona Electrics are loaded with safety tech, too. Standard kit includes autonomous emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane keeping assist and adaptive cruise control. Blind spot detection and rear cross traffic alert are optional on higher spec models. 

Performance-wise, the 39kWh model will cover the 0-62mph in 9.7 seconds and will max out at 96mph. The more powerful model improves on both figures, achieving a 7.6 second 0-62mph time and 104mph top speed. Both variants produce a peak torque of 395Nm. 

Charge times vary depending on model; the small battery taking six hours and 10 minutes on a 7.2kW home AC charger, while the larger model will take nine hours and 40 minutes.

The car sits 15mm higher than petrol-powered editions, but features a number of exterior styling cues to highlight its lack of a combustion engine; there’s a sleeker front grille area that incorporates a flap to cover the charging socket beside the Hyundai badge, for example. 

Inside, the Kona Electric looks more like its regular stablemates, although there is a different centre console incorporating the controls for the car’s shift-by-wire system. The boot capacity is 373 litres – or 332 litres if you factor in space for cable storage. 

On sale now, the Kona Electric is initially being offered through Hyundai’s ‘Click to buy’ online ordering system. It’ll be offered through dealers later in 2019.

Would an electric car suit your driving needs? Here’s what to expect from life as an EV owner…

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