Hyundai’s updated 484km Kona Electric lands on Kiwi soil

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Words: Matthew Hansen
29 Apr 2021

A day after Hyundai unveiled its smouldering Kona N performance SUV, its local arm has confirmed the Kiwi arrival of its fully electric tree-hugging equivalent.

The updated Kona Electric series two, with its new looks, upgraded range capabilities, and more is now in local showrooms, ready to take on the likes of the Tesla Model 3 and Mini Electric.

“Since launching the ground-breaking Kona Electric in 2018 it’s been a popular choice of EV here in New Zealand for both private and fleet buyers,” says Hyundai New Zealand general manager Andy Sinclair.

“Additional standard safety, connectivity and convenience features ensure an even better driving experience in the 2021 model. Kona Electric continues to deliver one of the best all-electric driving ranges of any electric car.”

The biggest story though is range, with the Kona’s flagship 64kWh battery model boasting an increased maximum travelling distance of 484km on the WLTP cycle. This is a significant rise over the 449km the marque claimed with the current model, and helps push the compact SUV into Tesla territory.

It’s mated to a 150kW/395Nm electric motor, offering drivers that signature instant power and torque that electric powertrains offer.

As it stands, it’s the most range-capable vehicle in its class, and Hyundai claims some relatively sharp charging times, too. It claims the electric Kona can be charged from 10 per cent to 80 per cent capacity in just 47 minutes when connected to a 100kW charger, and 64 minutes when connected to a 50kW charger.

Local pricing has gone up fractionally compared to the outgoing Kona Electric. Base price now sits at $79,990, a $1000 increase over the last one. The flagship Elite variant is $85,990, unchanged over the last-gen Elite. Hyundai will also offer a two-tone black-roof variant on the Elite as a no-cost option.

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