We're looking at the 2019 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate to see what the real-world winter range is here in Canada, and seeing if it's got what it takes for $54,000.00 CAD.
We've had the Hyundai Kona Electric on our list of cars to feature for quite some time. It's quickly become an incredibly popular electric vehicle here in Québec, we spot more Kona Electrics on the road than Bolt EVs or Niro EVs, so what's made this little vehicle so popular? We're looking at it from several perspectives. How does the Kona Electric perform in the winter, both from a traction and performance point of view, and how the real-world winter driving range is affected by the cold.
Our full tour and review of the Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate goes over what's new and different for the 2020 model year over the 2019, what features you get on the Ultimate such as LED headlights, front and rear parking sensors, backup camera, blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, forward collision warning, and much more, along with how the Kona Electric compares to the Kona 1.6T Ultimate we featured last year.
We also discuss the differences with the Kona EV's cousin, the 2019 Kia Niro EV SX Touring we featured earlier this year, considering both have the same motor and battery, but offer slightly different features and have almost similar pricing. Another test we do here on TestDrive is thorough EV pre-conditioning and scheduling, to see if the Kona Electric can be programmed to heat up on a schedule, and if you can run the heating & HVAC systems while the vehicle is charging up.
The core of our driving tests starts off by leaving the Kona Electric outside overnight in temperatures that feel like -20ºC and seeing how much theoretical range is lost. We then head out on a non-stop single-charge road test to see how far we can drive the Kona Electric around Québec before we need to stop for electricity. During this road test we talk about how the vehicle handles and feels, as well as how the heating systems like the heated seats and steering wheel work, along with the driver-only heat vent mode to help conserve electricity.
We wrap up our episode on the Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate by going over our total winter range testing, what we liked about this vehicle, and what we'd like to see improved, along with our final thoughts on it.