2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

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2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Perched up on its wheels, that has a distinct forward cant that gives it the impression of the puppy excitedly leaning in to lick your encounter, the Hyundai Kona is simple to like. Its eye-catching embarrassment of forward-lighting riches is attractively organized and is matched by the rear end’s similarly stacked upper and reduced lighting elements. (To the record, the pair of “eyebrows” situated in excess of the square-shaped headlights are LED operating lamps, even though fog lamps dwell in these hexagonal gashes from the lower consumption.)

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

Given the Kona is a small crossover competing in a segment for which America has created a growing dependency, it also wears black plastic fender flares and bumperettes to finish off the urban incursion-vehicle vibe. It all adds up to a better-looking option to the hot-selling, vaguely outdoorsy Subaru Crosstrek with which it directly competes.

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

Picking the Lime Twist paint that glowed like radiation from our Kona check car also unlocks the choice for color-matched trim while in the mostly black cabin, which features a high quality feeling. A straightforward-to-use touchscreen flanked by physical shortcut buttons to entry essential menus sits large up on the dashboard; beneath, you will discover the climate controls and a compact phone-shaped tray that, on prime Ultimate versions, is made up of an inductive-charging pad. Soft-touch elements cover a lot of the dashboard along with the upper halves on the front door panels, but move rearward inside the cabin and, as is common within this class, that squish provides strategy to starch. 

The tough plastics are nicely grained, nevertheless, and each and every elbow meets a padded armrest. Rear-seat room is tighter than within the greater Crosstrek (its wheelbase is two.5 inches longer compared to the Kona’s) whilst not untenably so. Subjectively, the Kona’s cozy front and rear seats feel over the a lot more spacious end of this class. Its 19 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats is just two cubes shy with the Subaru’s.

So that’s all fine, the design and usefulness and such. However the Kona delivers on deeper planes, as well. Beneath its clothes, parts gathered from throughout Hyundai’s automotive empire are assembled into a exciting, refined package. Amongst tallish subcompact hatchbacks-er, “crossovers”- absolutely nothing comes close, not even the fun-to-drive Mazda CX-3 or even the 10Best-winning Kia Soul. Have you essentially seen or driven a Mitsubishi Outlander Sport or a Chevrolet Trax? We rest our case.

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Interior

Consider the paterfamilias Kona Ultimate examined here. Its 175-hp turbocharged one.6-liter inline-four and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission rank as additional effective and complex than nearly everything else from the subcompact-crossover space. The powertrain is shared using the Kona Restricted, and both are distinguished visually through the SE and SEL designs by their natty 18-inch wheels and a few further chrome trim. Those lesser trims are powered by a much more class-standard 147-hp naturally aspirated two.0-liter four plus a typical six-speed automated. Front-wheel drive is common across the lineup, and all-wheel drive that may be locked right into a 50/50 front/rear torque split is accessible for $1300.

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

We’ve neither driven nor tested a Kona using the weaker engine, but our practical experience together with the very same two.0-liter in other Hyundais suggests it should be completely serviceable, if unexciting. In addition to, the Kona SE begins at just $20,480, as well as $22,130 SEL ranks being a real bargain provided its normal 7.0-inch touchscreen, blind-spot monitoring, heated front seats, proximity-key entry with push-button ignition, and 17-inch wheels.

The turbocharged engine within the $25,680 Kona Restricted as well as $28,380 Kona Ultimate skips adequacy for extra thrills than is definitely the norm in this segment. Our all-wheel-drive Kona Greatest reached 60 mph in 6.six seconds, a hair behind the lighter and much more powerful Kia Soul Turbo with essentially this very same engine and transmission (sans all-wheel drive) and faster than just about every other subcompact SUV-not to mention the most current Honda Civic Si sedan we examined.

Acceleration feels strongest with all the tachometer needle from the middle of its arc, around 3000 rpm (the engine can make its 195 lb-ft of peak torque at 1500 rpm, but all 175 ponies do not gallop onto the scene until finally 5500 rpm). Underneath hefty throttle, the dual-clutch automated dexterously selects whichever ratio puts the engine in its gutsy midrange. In typical driving, the transmission quietly seeks out greater gears to keep the engine waffling along at very low revs, exactly where its torque lugs throughout the fairly lightweight Kona with ease. There may be a Sport mode, however it merely offers the engine and transmission a far more frenetic feel; their reactivity-already adroit inside the default Typical setting-doesn’t transform.

As with most dual-clutch transmissions not employed through the Volkswagen Group, the Kona’s exhibits a pronounced on/off clutch engagement at lower speeds when creeping forward, especially on releasing the brake pedal or feathering the gas. Accelerate more deliberately than an octogenarian, as well as clutch grabs promptly and off you go.

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Features

In spite of its utter lack of sporting pretense, the Hyundai changes route eagerly. It claims a torque-vectoring function, but as is standard in economical cars it’s brake primarily based, which means the Kona just drags the brakes over the within wheels in the course of a flip to aid the motor vehicle rotate. We never felt the characteristic in action, and no matter what its contributions, they are overshadowed by clever suspension tuning that delivers flat cornering along with a stunningly stubborn resistance to understeer. We noticed a heady 0.88 g of lateral grip on our skidpad, tying the effectiveness of your Honda Civic Si sedan on all-season tires.

2018 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

Taut wheel handle, mixed using the Kona’s stiff entire body shell, eradicates the flop and flex that Hyundai also has been eliminating from its other solutions. Greater still, the Kona’s ride is mature, isolating the passenger compartment from the two the truly feel and sound of impacts with road disruptions, and the cabin remains relatively hushed at pace. Braking, not a particular strong suit of any crossover, proved mediocre; our Kona halted from 70 mph in 171 feet. Ditto its numb steering, which is par for this class but disappointing in light from the abilities of your chassis.

Optioned with $125 floor mats and all-wheel drive, our Kona Ultimate’s cost came to $29,805. That is certainly rich for any subcompact crossover, even one as good to drive as this. Frankly, we could do without having the Ultimate-exclusive 8.0-inch touchscreen with navigation, Infinity audio technique, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and automatic high-beams.

The flip-up head-up show, also, seems ineffective. Its proximity on the driver usually means that you just must look right down to see the speed, navigation directions, and blind-spot alerts it projects, hovering only somewhat higher compared to the typical gauges the HUD purportedly supplants. Hyundai’s explanation that projecting data onto the windshield would require more high-priced glass sounds more like a reason to not bother carrying out it in any respect.

In what also feels like a whiff, forward-collision warning and lane-keeping help are available only around the Greatest trim or, curiously, the SEL’s $1500 Tech bundle, leaving SE and Limited purchasers inside the lurch. This (plus the absence of automated emergency braking and adaptive cruise manage on any Kona) runs counter to marketplace trend at this price tag point, exactly where such active-safety features more and more are common fare across whole model lineups. We’d recommend Hyundai resolve that-and think about making the turbo normal, too. For now, the $26,980 Kona Restricted with all-wheel drive provides a greater intersection of functions, rate, and that turbo engine. With its 7.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Automobile, fog lights, leather seats (heated in front), automatic climate control, and sunroof, you’d sacrifice little compared with this Greatest model. Buy a Kona for the seems or even the goodies, and you’ll get a well-rounded, characterful vehicle inside a class that is as scorching as any despite its dearth of well-rounded, characterful cars.

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