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Join the revolution: 10 things you didn't know about the all-electric Hyundai Kona

By Paul Connolly

Hyundai’s latest small SUV offering is the Kona Electric – a long-range all-electric family car.

Going on sale in a few months, the Kona Electric SUV is, as you’d expect, the green version of the Hyundai Kona, with a few interesting extras added in.

It’s further evidence that the shift to environmentally friendly electric vehicles is gaining traction, and also that manufacturers are starting to get on top of so-called ‘range anxiety’.

This is the fear of running out of power whilst completing a longer journey in an electric car.

The new Kona conquers that by significantly claiming a longer range, one that should make it an everyday usable family car. More on this below.

You get the same Kona on the inside – basically a great little family SUV with all the modern trimmings including bagfuls of technology and driver assists and a quality cabin.

The regular Hyundai Kona is in showrooms now priced from £15,646.

The all-electric model, loaded with tons of kit, will be on sale in the UK and Ireland this summer. No official pricing has been confirmed yet, but expect it to be from around the £25k mark.

The Kona Electric in theory enters the crowded small SUV segment, but its electric powertrain should give it an advantage amongst environmentally-minded customers. Key rivals include the Citroen C3 AirCross, Skoda Karoq and Seat Arona.

Here’s 10 things you may not know about this new, environmentally friendly Hyundai SUV:

1.  It has two zero-emission powertrains, both lithium-ion polymer batteries – a 204PS (150KW) pack and a 135PS (99KW) version

2. The more powerful battery has an excellent range of 292 miles, according to Hyundai. This is, in theory, enough to get you from Belfast to Cork (266 miles via the M8) on a single charge, although it would be a brave driver to try it as real world figures will be somewhat lower. That said, if anyone manages Belfast to Cork on a single charge it will be quite a coup for electric cars!

3. The smaller battery still has a very good official range:  somewhat shy of 200 miles. Again, in theory, enough to get you from, say, Lisburn to Dublin Airport and back (180 miles) on a single charge. Again, don’t try this at home.

4. The Kona Electric car sits 15mm higher than petrol-powered models, boosting that high driving position that many motorists love

5. There are subtle external styling differences. Eagle-eyed Hyundai fans will recognise the Kona Electric against regular models because it features a more stylish front grille area hiding a flap to cover the charging socket near the Hyundai badge.

6. It’s fast. Electric cars have no gearboxes and can gain speed effortlessly; nevertheless the Kona Electric is pretty impressive: 7.6 seconds from 0-62mph at its best.

7. It flaunts its, well, electric-ness. A unique feature is a shift-by-wire operation gear control. Adjustable regenerative braking system allows the driver to adjust the intensity of the regenerative braking by using the paddle shifts behind the steering wheel. The system recuperates additional energy when possible. Key information about the car’s driving performance  and energy usage are displayed on a seven-inch supervision cluster and in a head-up display in the driver’s line of sight.

8. It’s unique. The Kona Electric means Hyundai is the first automotive brand in Europe to make a fully-electric subcompact SUV available to everyone.

9.  It comes packed with Hyundai’s latest safety pack called SmartSense: Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Detection including Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist, Driver Attention Warning and Speed Limit Information Function.

10. You get a very high-end sound system: audio manufacturer Krell has provided a pro experience featuring eight speakers including two 20 mm tweeters, four 160 mm woofer speakers, one 100 mm centre speaker and a 200 mm subwoofer speaker. All of which basically amount to one banging music system.

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