The Echo’s Emma Kennedy tests out the all-electric Hyundai Kona

By Emma Kennedy

With push-button gears Kona was a joy to drive

In my final test drive for March I had the pleasure of taking the all-electric Hyundai Kona out on the road for a few days and I can say it was a joy to drive.

There is just one entry model of the Kona EV and as standard comes with leather seats, 17” alloys wheels, heated seats and steering wheel, Air Conditioning, roof rails and much more, I liked that it means the only decision to make is what colour to go for.

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Matthew from Mooney’s Hyundai with a very excited Emma Kennedy and (right) the Hyundai Kona getting its charge.

I was particularly impressed with some of their technology features such as the touch button gears and no gear stick, giving the centre console a very slick look and feel, with the chrome centre interior adding to this modern finish.

The Driver mode option was also innovative and fun, with options such as ECO, Comfort and Sport mode.

The Sport Mode option does exactly what it says on the tin, it added a real kick to the driving experience and it’s FAST!

There is also a ‘battery recuperation’ feature in the car, and at level 3 can save you on battery power, this means the car slows as soon as you stop accelerating and without breaking, this took getting used to, but after just 2 days I was definitely using less pedal power.

As with the other cars I test drove the Kona has keyless entry and stop / start engine, lane keep assist, Bluetooth connectivity (with Apple Car Play), rear parking sensors and camera etc.

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73% of our social media followers said YES to touch screen (left), touch pad charger for the iPhone 8 (middle), and reverse parking camera (right).

This highlights the fact that all the big brands are keeping their foot on the pedal when it comes to new standard features and innovative technology.

The Range was excellent at 450km per charge, I had the car from lunchtime on Tuesday for 3 days, I drove from Tallaght to Sandyford twice a day, over to UCD one morning for an event and to Maynooth to collect my son, when handing the Kona back on Friday there was still 200km remaining in the battery, comforting considering we need to see the roll out of the new charging points.

All-electric Hyundai Kona gives a smooth 450km on a full charge

SEAI are still offering a €600 grant for the installation of home charging points, saving you approximately half the cost, however I’m not sure how this works if you live in an apartment block (I will look into this!).

The Kona is placed in the small SUV market, and there are very few Hybrid or Electric vehicles in this range to compare it to, with its petrol and diesel competitors in a better price range The Kona is however competitively priced for a small SUV within the Electric and Hybrid market place.

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Heated seats and drive mode option (left), slick centre console with the arm rest and double cup holder (centre), and touch button gears instead of a gear stick (right).

Going electric is a move you need to seriously consider, though all the electric models on offer are more expensive than their competing cars, you need to get your calculator out and figure out your savings on running costs and fuel, and then take into consideration that this is the way forward.

The big question still looms, are we/you/Ireland ready yet? Having test drove the Kona the future is bright for the all-electric car market place and I will certainly be making a futuristic move soon. Thank you to Ep Mooney's Garage on the Longmile Road for allowing us to take the all-electric Hyundai Kona out on the road for a few days.

Ten good reasons to drive away in the Hyundai Kona

Range – 450km - full charge

Price point - €39.480 - Price includes SEAI grants

Compact SUV

Electronic gear shift button

Regenerative braking control

7” digital cluster

Apple CarPlay & Android Auto

Leather interior as standard

Heated seats & steering wheel

Wireless phone charging pad

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