InsideEVs Review: 2020 Hyundai Kona Electric best non-Tesla EV

Discussion in 'Hyundai Kona Electric' started by Domenick, May 27, 2020.

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  1. The InsideEVs review of the 2020 Hyundai Kona Electric (Ultimate) is up and if you're already a fan (or owner) of this vehicle, you'll enjoy watching and the conclusion. Basically, @KyleConner sums up by saying this is the best non-Tesla EV out there.

    It's mostly shot while driving, though there is some other footage spliced in, and does a great job of walking us through all the relevant info prospective buyers might want to know. I definitely learned a few things.

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  3. SouthernDude

    SouthernDude Active Member

    What’s the tl;dr of the video?
  4. Basically, the 2020 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate is the best non-Tesla EV available in the US. At least, value-wise.
    You get lots of range and tech in a nice comfortable package for a reasonable price.
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  5. SouthernDude

    SouthernDude Active Member

    Yeah. I figured as much. I was already looking at the Hyundai Kona EV and the Kia Niro EV as possible options to get in the future. The lowest trims though because I’m cheap. Lol
    Domenick likes this.
  6. hobbit

    hobbit Well-Known Member

    Nice, but of course I'm biased. Some of the "bad" has him blaming the car for
    human problems; f.e. *my* tires don't spin while I take off. And the regen/friction
    transition was hashed to death in the Prius forums long ago: bottom line, you
    expect it and compensate.

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  8. FloridaSun

    FloridaSun Well-Known Member

    I came to the same conclusion.. In the end, I had to decide between the Kona and the Model 3 and I went with the Kona.. mostly for the Battery warranty..
    Last edited: May 27, 2020
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  9. nigels

    nigels Active Member

    For me it was worth watching for his description of the transition from regeneration to friction braking. I experienced this going down a fairly steep slope towards a junction. I was braking regeneratively and then all of sudden it was like the car slipped into neutral, the car started rolling downhill with no braking, threatening to overshoot the junction, then the friction brakes kicked in. That was a pretty worrying scenario, but it's only happened to me once in a year of ownership.

    As for smoking the tires, well, you learn to modulate the throttle as you would in any high performance car. It's a pity the traction control is so lazy and slow to respond, though. My other car's traction control will abort wheelspin at the slightest hint of loss of traction.

    By the way, it's nice to see a Tesla owner giving a non-Tesla vehicle kudos!
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  10. FloridaSun

    FloridaSun Well-Known Member

    I'm in Florida, so I have not driven in snow but I've driven many times in wet weather but I have never experienced what he describes. Yes, the brakes sometimes feel a little weird and I found that sometimes, more brake force is applied than I wished for but I have not noticed a lag between regen and friction braking.. It is however true that sometimes, the brakes feel odd but not odd enough to make driving the car dangerous. It's just a little weird how they act.. It's not linear like friction only brakes. The transition between regen and friction is not as smooth as it could be.
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  11. nigels

    nigels Active Member

    I've read a lot of EV reviews where they call out unnatural brake pedal feel and the weird transition from regenerative to friction braking. I've never felt that the Kona EV braking transition was particularly unusual. Sure, you can feel, and hear the transition, often because of rusty discs, but it never surprised me. The effect Kyle describes, a momentary loss of braking, is an entirely different feeling. It's not loss of traction because of gravel or ice on the road, or ABS activation, it's a sense of complete loss of braking, like brake failure, for perhaps a second or less. He claims it's been improved in the 2020 model and that it's a software issue. What I don't understand is how he triggered it so much as to make it worth emphasizing. Regardless, I hope they update the 2019s if it is just a software fix.
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  13. SkookumPete

    SkookumPete Well-Known Member

    Applying the brakes when moving from asphalt to gravel can be alarming, as a lot more grab kicks in suddenly.
    electriceddy likes this.
  14. Bruce M.

    Bruce M. Active Member

    I am the very happy owner of a Kona Electric SEL -- got the lowest trim partly to keep the cost down, and also because I really don't need a lot of bells and whistles. And for a base level (though, as I recall, the ICE Kona has a lower trim level), this comes very well equipped, from heated seats to all sorts of safety tech. As a Tesla-phobe, this was exactly the car I wanted. I also looked at the Bolt and the Leaf, but it was no contest.
  15. SouthernDude

    SouthernDude Active Member

    Right now I drive a 2008 Nissan Xterra. When I upgrade it’s going to be like getting in a spaceship for me. lol
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  16. "It's worth every penny". Have to agree, well on the way to becoming my best car ever, and I've had some really good cars (2007 CR-V, 99 Accord) . And I routinely get way over the EPA estimate of 258. This time of year I'm almost always round 300 miles, however, I mostly drive around town. On the highway it drops considerably esp. in winter. Not that I'm saying anything new here. Anyway, curious to see what I get next month driving to SC b/c this will be my first long trip that isn't in winter. Have my route and charging all planned out, glad to have the updated rates from Electrify America.
    Domenick likes this.
  17. Bruce M.

    Bruce M. Active Member

    Being relatively new to the EV world, I'm still figuring out how the city vs. highway driving dynamic works in terms of mileage and range. I'm of course long used to ICE cars where highway driving gets you way better mileage. That was even true of the mild hybrid I drove before getting the Kona, a Honda CR-Z, whose best gas mileage ever was on a road trip in southern Utah. I'm getting about 4.5 miles per kwh so far, sometimes a little better, doing about 95% city driving in San Francisco. I probably won't do much more highway driving till the COVID-19 lockdown ends, but I do expect to do a couple longer highway trips later in the year, and I'm curious to see the impact on my mileage.
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  18. I drove to SC through the WV mountains in December last year, and my best guess is my range was around 225-235 miles (but mostly driving 70mph). I expected it to be slightly higher and as I drove I realized I would really be cutting it close for where I was planning to stop and charge for the night, so I stopped somewhere else along the way just to charge for an hour and a half (Level 2, WV has NO DC Fast charging). After that, my trip was a piece of cake, there were Electrify America chargers where I needed them in VA, NC and SC and I never had to stop for more than about 45 minutes. With the warmer weather, my trip in June should be slightly better, I will have to let you know how that turns out.
    Domenick likes this.
  19. ericy

    ericy Well-Known Member

    How is the charging infrastructure in WV? According to PlugShare, it still seems kind of limited.

    The thing that strikes me is that every one of us grew up in the ICE car world. Even as small children we would have noted the things our parents and grandparents were doing or needed to do to drive and maintain an ICE car, so when we got our own ICE cars, it was sort of second nature - there wasn't really a lot of learning required, and if we had questions, we could call up friends, neighbors, siblings or parents.

    With a BEV, a lot of stuff changes. On the one hand, there is a lot of stuff that we *don't* need to do any more in terms of maintenance. I was in an auto parts store on Friday, and as I was looking around, it just struck me how much of the stuff they had was no longer relevant to me. Then there is the new stuff - mostly charging related. People coming from the ICE world are still in the mindset that you need to go somewhere to charge, just like filling on a tank of gas. So they assume that this still applies to a BEV, and while you can sort of do it that way, it's not really the best way to drive a BEV.

    So there is a short period of adjustment when people get their first BEV - I see that in the questions that we see here when people start shopping for their first BEV.
  20. It's terrible. It was the only place that gave me trouble on my trip. I ended up staying overnight at one of their state parks that had multiple level 2 chargers, and I charged overnight to 100% while sleeping. Then the rest of the trip was easy with DC fast available everywhere else I went. This month, when I take a similar trip, I'm purposefully going way east through Maryland then Virginia and south so that I have DC Fast charging available to me along the route.
  21. SouthernDude

    SouthernDude Active Member

    I would say that there’s more overlap than there are differences. All the scheduled maintenance essentially overlaps minus occasional battery checkups. I would argue that it’s easier to do all scheduled maintenance at home with an EV. (Although unscheduled maintenance seems to be a nightmare still)

    I think that we’ll see auto parts stores start selling charges soon. That will be interesting to see. We may even see battery pack replacements too. Who knows?

    Well, that mindset isn’t entirely wrong. Even though most charging will happen at home, people will still need an effective charging infrastructure to do long distance driving.
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  22. I think you're absolutely right; in a few years there will be all kinds of options for swapping out your battery pack for a new one. OEM and aftermarket both; recycled, new, etc. I think some older hybrids have these options, I watched someone on YouTube replace an early 200x Civic hybrid battery pack last weekend.

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