Having arrived in Malaysia in the fourth quarter of last year, the Hyundai Kona Electric brought battery-electric motoring from the Korean brand before the arrival of the wonderfully futuristic Hyundai Ioniq 5.
Initially arriving in November 2021 in e-Lite and e-Plus variants with a 39.2 kWh battery and the range-topping e-Max with a 64 kWh, it is the e-Plus that is reviewed here in this video, which packs more equipment with the same mechanical specifications as that of the base variant. As tested, the Kona Electric is priced at RM176,838 on-the-road, including the recently reintroduced SST.
The e-Plus with its 39.2 kWh battery gets an electric motor rated to produce 136 PS and 395 Nm of torque, and offers a maximum range of 305 km on a full charge according to WLTP testing protocol.
While the base e-Lite shares its drivetrain with the e-Plus, the latter gets an 11 kW onboard electric charger (like on the e-Max); two charging ports are offered on this electric crossover, for Type 2 AC and CCS2 DC. Charging at 7.2 kW single-phase AC will take around 6.5 hours to go from 10% to 80% state of charge, while charging at 11 kW is done in 4.5 hours.
Meanwhile, the more powerful DC charging method takes 60 minutes at 50 kW DC, and using a 100 kW DC charger will take 47 minutes. By comparison, using the supplied in-cable control box (ICCB) with a domestic three-pin outlet will take 22 hours to charge the 39.2 kWh versions of the Kona Electric.
In terms of safety kit, all versions of the Kona Electric receive six airbags, ESC, ABS, VSM, traction control and hill-start assist. Advanced driver assistance systems consist of lane keeping assist (LKA), lane following assist (LFA), leading vehicle departure alert (LVDA), high beam assist, rear occupant alert and driver attention warning, and AEB for vehicles and pedestrians.
Adding to the standard safety kit, the e-Plus (as well as E-Max) also gains front radar, rear cross-traffic collision avoidance assist (RCCA) and blind spot collision assist (BCA).
For the price, the Hyundai Kona Electric e-Plus and other variants come with a two-year, 50,000 km manufacturer warranty; to get the full five-year coverage, buyers will have to fork out an additional RM10,000 as an add-on package.
What is the Hyundai Kona Electric like to drive, and live with? Can it handle an out-of-town trip on a single charge of its battery? Watch the video review below, as Jonathan Lee puts the battery-electric B-segment SUV through its paces.