Published: Tue, June 13, 2017
Research | By Elizabeth Houston

Hyundai plays catch-up with new subcompact SUV

Hyundai plays catch-up with new subcompact SUV

The Hyundai Kona Compact Urban SUV is officially revealed as Hyundai add a new small SUV to their range to tackle cars like the Nissan Juke.

To add more off-roader feel, Hyundai has added black cladding on the front and rear fascias, as well as the body sides.

On the rear are slim brake lights, turn indicators and reverse lamp, surrounded by protective skin that begins at the C-pillar. Further, the two-tone roof, short overhangs and long wheelbase give the Kona a tight, capable look.

Inside, the Kona will feature a best-in-class AVN (Audio, Visual, Navigation) monitor, floated into the dashboard, while a variety of fluid design touches will complete the look throughout the cabin. This system will be available with a five-, seven- or eight-inch display, and will incorporate smartphone connectivity options such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

However, it is too early to speculate whether Hyundai will being the Kona compact SUV to India. It also gets a first in its category feature - console-based wireless charging. The new compact SUV is offered in both petrol and diesel engine options.

A 2.0-liter MPI Atkinson engine produces 149PS, with a 0-100km/h time of 10 seconds and a top speed of 194km/h. In the Kona, Hyundai predicts 0-60 miles per hour times of 7.7 seconds and a top speed of 131 miles per hour. The Gamma 1.6T-GDI diesel engine boasts 177PS and is mated to seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (7DCT). There will also be a 1.6-litre diesel version for select markets, including Europe, but once again it is unlikely to come to New Zealand.

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For suspension, Kona gets MacPherson struts at the front. Elevated seating, and an optimised under floor layout which includes improvements to the 4WD drivetrain and exhaust system, to reduce central tunnel intrusion, will provide significant interior space. Named after a district on the Big Island Hawaii famous for coffee, Kona is created to stand apart from the automaker's larger SUV models Tucson and Santa Fe.

Hyundai has also chose to fit the Kona with a multi-link rear axle with the intention of improving ride and handling, alongside a sophisticated traction control system called Advanced Traction Cornering Control.

Safety looks set to be a high priority with the Kona.

The Kona is named after the coastal region on the Big Island of Hawaii, USA.

Hyundai will pack the Kona with blind spot warning, traffic collision warning (which detects when another vehicle comes in Kona's reversing path), driver attention warning, high beam assist, lane keep assist, and more.

It looks like the new Hyundai Kona is heading for Hyundai's United Kingdom showrooms in November, and although prices haven't been released for the Kona in the United Kingdom, a starting point of around £14,500 seems likely.

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