2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

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2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Perched up on its wheels, by using a distinct forward cant that gives it the impression of the puppy excitedly leaning in to lick your encounter, the Hyundai Kona is easy to like. Its eye-catching embarrassment of forward-lighting riches is attractively arranged and is matched through the rear end’s similarly stacked upper and lower lighting components. (For your record, the pair of “eyebrows” situated above the square-shaped headlights are LED operating lamps, though fog lamps reside in people hexagonal gashes inside the decrease consumption.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

Offered the Kona can be a small crossover competing in the segment for which America has produced a developing dependency, furthermore, it wears black plastic fender flares and bumperettes to finish off the urban incursion-vehicle vibe. All of it adds up to a better-looking different to your hot-selling, vaguely outdoorsy Subaru Crosstrek with which it right competes.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

Deciding on the Lime Twist paint that glowed like radiation from our Kona test vehicle also unlocks the option for color-matched trim during the mainly black cabin, which includes a quality feeling. A straightforward-to-use touchscreen flanked by physical shortcut buttons to accessibility important menus sits higher up within the dashboard; beneath, there are the climate controls along with a small phone-shaped tray that, on top rated Ultimate models, includes an inductive-charging pad. Soft-touch elements cover a lot of the dashboard plus the upper halves of your front door panels, but move rearward during the cabin and, as is typical on this class, that squish offers strategy to starch. 

The hard plastics are nicely grained, on the other hand, and each elbow meets a padded armrest. Rear-seat room is tighter than in the greater Crosstrek (its wheelbase is 2.five inches longer compared to the Kona’s) while not untenably so. Subjectively, the Kona’s at ease front and rear seats truly feel within the more spacious finish of this class. Its 19 cubic feet of cargo area behind the rear seats is just two cubes shy of the Subaru’s.

So that’s all fine, the fashion and usefulness and this kind of. But the Kona delivers on deeper planes, also. Beneath its clothing, parts gathered from all through Hyundai’s automotive empire are assembled right into a pleasurable, refined package deal. Among tallish subcompact hatchbacks-er, “crossovers”- nothing comes close, not even the fun-to-drive Mazda CX-3 or even the 10Best-winning Kia Soul. Have you actually viewed or driven a Mitsubishi Outlander Sport or even a Chevrolet Trax? We rest our case.

Get the paterfamilias Kona Greatest tested here. Its 175-hp turbocharged 1.6-liter inline-four and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission rank as much more strong and complex than just about every thing else inside the subcompact-crossover room. The powertrain is shared using the Kona Constrained, and the two are distinguished visually in the SE and SEL designs by their natty 18-inch wheels and some further chrome trim. Individuals lesser trims are powered by a far more class-standard 147-hp naturally aspirated 2.0-liter four and also a traditional six-speed automatic. Front-wheel drive is common throughout the lineup, and all-wheel drive that can be locked into a 50/50 front/rear torque split is accessible for $1300.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Interior

We’ve neither driven nor examined a Kona using the weaker engine, but our expertise using the very same 2.0-liter in other Hyundais suggests it needs to be entirely serviceable, if unexciting. Apart from, the Kona SE begins at just $20,480, as well as the $22,130 SEL ranks like a real bargain offered its typical seven.0-inch touchscreen, blind-spot monitoring, heated front seats, proximity-key entry with push-button ignition, and 17-inch wheels.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

The turbocharged engine within the $25,680 Kona Limited as well as the $28,380 Kona Greatest skips adequacy for far more thrills than is the norm on this segment. Our all-wheel-drive Kona Ultimate reached 60 mph in 6.six seconds, a hair behind the lighter and much more impressive Kia Soul Turbo with in essence this same engine and transmission (sans all-wheel drive) and quicker than each and every other subcompact SUV-not to mention by far the most latest Honda Civic Si sedan we tested.

Acceleration feels strongest together with the tachometer needle inside the middle of its arc, about 3000 rpm (the engine tends to make its 195 lb-ft of peak torque at 1500 rpm, but all 175 ponies don’t gallop onto the scene until 5500 rpm). Underneath heavy throttle, the dual-clutch automatic dexterously selects whichever ratio puts the engine in its gutsy midrange. In usual driving, the transmission quietly seeks out larger gears to keep the engine waffling along at very low revs, the place its torque lugs around the comparatively light-weight Kona with ease. There may be a Sport mode, nonetheless it simply provides the engine and transmission a more frenetic come to feel; their reactivity-already adroit while in the default Regular setting-doesn’t adjust.

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

In spite of its utter lack of sporting pretense, the Hyundai alterations route eagerly. It claims a torque-vectoring perform, but as is normal in economical autos it’s brake primarily based, meaning the Kona just drags the brakes about the inside wheels in the course of a flip to help the vehicle rotate. We never ever felt the function in action, and what ever its contributions, they are overshadowed by intelligent suspension tuning that delivers flat cornering and also a stunningly stubborn resistance to understeer. We noticed a heady 0.88 g of lateral grip on our skidpad, tying the efficiency with the Honda Civic Si sedan on all-season tires.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review Features

Taut wheel control, combined with the Kona’s stiff entire body shell, eradicates the flop and flex that Hyundai also has become getting rid of from its other merchandise. Superior nevertheless, the Kona’s trip is mature, isolating the passenger compartment from both the truly feel and sound of impacts with road disruptions, plus the cabin remains comparatively hushed at speed. Braking, not a particular solid suit of any crossover, proved mediocre; our Kona halted from 70 mph in 171 feet. Ditto its numb steering, that is par for this class but disappointing in light of the talents of your chassis.

2019 Hyundai Kona 1.6L Turbo AWD Review

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

The flip-up head-up display, also, seems useless. Its proximity towards the driver signifies that you simply will have to search right down to see the speed, navigation directions, and blind-spot alerts it tasks, hovering only slightly increased than the normal gauges the HUD purportedly supplants. Hyundai’s explanation that projecting data onto the windshield would demand more expensive glass sounds far more like a purpose to not bother carrying out it at all.

In what also feels like a whiff, forward-collision warning and lane-keeping help are available only on the Ultimate trim or, curiously, the SEL’s $1500 Tech bundle, leaving SE and Limited buyers within the lurch. This (as well as the absence of automated emergency braking and adaptive cruise control on any Kona) runs counter to marketplace trend at this price point, wherever such active-safety characteristics more and more are normal fare across entire model lineups. We’d recommend Hyundai resolve that-and look at producing the turbo standard, too

For now, the $26,980 Kona Constrained with all-wheel drive provides a much better intersection of capabilities, price, and that turbo engine. With its seven.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Car, fog lights, leather seats (heated in front), automated climate control, and sunroof, you’d sacrifice little compared with this Greatest model. Invest in a Kona to the looks or even the goodies, and you’ll get a well-rounded, characterful motor vehicle in a class that’s as hot as any despite its dearth of well-rounded, characterful autos.

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