The Hyundai Kona is a small crossover that can never really be described as ‘weird’. But practical and economical? Sure, even in all-electric form, where it undercut the larger Hyundai Ioniq 5 EV by tens of thousands of dollars.
Now it takes on a downright cyberpunk look to match all that pragmatism. Hyundai just unveiled the all-new 2024 Kona, and “futuristic design” is on the menu for this otherwise modest car that currently starts in the low $20,000 range. And it’s another design win for Hyundai, outperforming many other car companies in that department as of late.
It’s another Hyundai design win
Like the outgoing car, the new Kona is available in four forms: an all-electric version; a hybrid; the performance-oriented N model; and one with a conventional combustion engine. They all look sharp, thanks in large part to what Hyundai calls its “Seamless Horizon Lamp”: that large horizontal LED bar that extends across the hood. It is almost a Rivian in that respect.
In addition, the front and rear LED bars on the Kona have parametric pixels in keeping with Hyundai’s pixelated design ethos for all of its EVs. For example, the new Hyundai Ioniq 6 has more than 700 pixelated LEDs in and around the car. Hyundai didn’t give us a number here, but even without knowing the exact pixel count, it’s still striking for an affordable compact crossover. That car segment is not exactly known for its excellent design. It’s great to see these kinds of risks being taken on more normal, viable cars.
The new Kona is also a slightly larger crossover than before, almost six inches longer overall and 2.4 inches longer in wheelbase. The interior has also been revised to be more spacious, says Hyundai, and the car now also features a pair of 12.3-inch-wide displays that combine to form a fully digital dashboard. That alone is quite an upgrade over the current Kona, which, as good as it is, still has an interior that screams “airport rental car.”
Like its predecessor, the new Kona is also somewhat unique due to the sheer amount of powertrains it offers. Not many other models offer a performance version, a standard ICE engine, a hybrid, and an EV on the same line; BMW’s 4 Series, for example, is one of the few others. The hybrid variant was previously unavailable in North America, and Hyundai isn’t saying whether this new one will be.
Unfortunately, Hyundai itself has not given any details about those powertrains. But the old Kona had some pretty great specs, with 400 miles of range on the EV, great fuel economy on the hybrid and gas models, and a fierce turbocharged engine on the N performance version, with more athleticism than just about anything else in this segment .
It can be assumed that those will be improved for the all-new Kona, and Hyundai said more details will be released in the coming months. We can also assume that the base price will remain reasonable, so expect pixel fun for everyone soon.