Korean firm’s small SUV features a fresh design direction and new tech; expected to cost from £15,000

These are our exclusive pictures of the Hyundai Kona, showing the car in greater detail than before.

The Kona is its Korean maker's first entry into the small-SUV segment. The global launch was held in Seoul yesterday.

Intended to take on the likes of the Nissan Juke, the Kona features a fresh design for the brand and a range of new-to-Hyundai technology, including a head-up display and revamped infotainment system.

The Kona sits below the Santa Fe and Tucson in Hyundai’s SUV line-up, and the firm hopes that it will help expand its customer base – particularly in Europe.

A European-model launch will be held this evening - check back here later for more details.

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“The all-new Kona is not just another car among Hyundai Motor’s established SUV range – it is an important milestone on our journey to become Asian automotive brand number one in Europe by 2021,” said Thomas Schmid, Hyundai Europe’s chief operating officer.

“With its true SUV genes, a progressive design and premium features, Kona reflects the lifestyle of modern customers, enhancing the brand’s appeal and attracting new customers.”

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Peter Schreyer, boss of design at Hyundai, said: "'We worked hard to embody an expressive spirit. It's untypical and unconventional. We've always wanted to do a compact car with emotion. It has the same affect as a strong espresso..."

The Kona, which shares a platform with sister firm Kia’s forthcoming Stonic, will go on sale in Korea next month, followed by North America and Europe; it is expected to be available to buy in the UK in November. All the brand's latest-generation diesel and petrol engines to make it into Kona by spring 2018. In the UK, there will initially be a choice of two turbocharged petrol engines, with a 1.6-litre diesel following in mid-2018. It will be available with front- and all-wheel-drive.

Conceived as a global car, the Kona will be adjusted for each market. As well as differing engine options, the ride, handling and suspension will be customised for different regions. 

The Kona is named after a coastal region on Hawaii. It continues Hyundai's trend of naming crossover and SUV models after travel destinations, established by the Tucson and Santa Fe.

Hyundai Kona: engine and powertrain options

The two petrol engines available at launch will be a 1.0L T-GDI with a six-speed manual transmission and a 1.6L T-GDI with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission and all-wheel drive.

The 1.0L unit will produce 118bhpm, with a 0-62mph time of 12.0sec and a top speed of 112mph. It produces 127lb ft of torque at 1500-4000rpm

The more powerful 1.6-litre petrol unit has 174bhp with 195lb ft of torque at 1500-4000rpm. It can achieve 0-63mph in 7.9sec, with a top speed of 127mph.

The 1.6-litre diesel is due to arrive in the European market at some point in 2018, although it's not yet confirmed. It will be available in two-wheel drive with 113bhp and a six-speed manual. It produces 134bhp in seven-speed DCT and all-wheel-drive guise.

When fitted with the seven-speed box, both petrol and diesel models will feature two driver modes: Normal and Sport, the latter of which holds onto gears for longer between shifts.

Some markets will also be offered the Kona with a 2.0-litre MPI Atkinson engine, although this won't be coming to Europe.

Fresh design: Hyundai’s new exterior styling, rugged looks

The Kona features a fresh design for Hyundai, with the adoption of the marque’s new ‘Cascading Grille’ front. Hyundai says it is designed to merge high-tech looks with sophistication, to appeal to millennial buyers. The styling was developed at Hyundai's Califonia facility.

Sangyup Lee, Hyundai's head of styling, said: “We wanted to create a character that was strong. As a design, creating an icon is a tough challenge. The overall first impression is about dynamic character.”

There are slim daytime LED running lights positioned above the main headlights – a design similar to that of the Juke. The rear of the Kona features wraparound cladding that houses the indicator and reversing lights, slim LED rear lights and a spoiler with an integrated LED brake light.

There are large plastic areas - which Hyundai says are styled on 'protective armour' - that extend over the wheel arches to hint at the Kona’s off-roading capabilities; 16in wheels are standard, with 17in and 18in alloys available as options. Roof racks are also available as an exterior option.

There will be 10 colour options, with a two-tone roof adding more customisation.

Dimensions: sizing up the Hyundai Kona

The Kona is 4165mm long and 1800mm wide, with a height 1550mm. That makes it slightly shorter and lower than the Juke, but 35mm wider. The Kona’s 2600mm wheelbase is 70mm longer than the Juke's.

The Kona has a ground clearance of 170mm to offer ‘a true SUV experience’. It features an all-steel body.

The Kona has McPherson struts at the front. The 2WD model comes with a couple torsion beam, with a multi-link system on the AWD model. That all-wheel-drive car also comes with traction control.

Inside the Hyundai Kona: clutter-free cabin, fresh infotainment and safety tech

Hyundai’s designers have tried to give the Kona’s interior a premium feel with a clutter-free cabin.

There is 1005mm of headroom in the front, with 961mm in the rear. The Kona has a 361-litre boot, compared to the 354-litre boot in the Juke. The Kona’s maximum capacity is 1143 litres, 46 fewer than Nissan’s small SUV.

The Kona comes a 5.0-inch TFT screen as standard, with an optional 8.0-inch colour touchscreen available. In a first for Hyundai, the Kona is available with a Display Audio system that features connected services, including smartphone syncing using Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. A wireless smartphone charging pad is available as an option.

In another Hyundai first, the Kona is available with a head-up display, which the firm says has class-leading luminance.

An eight-speaker sound system by American audio firm Krell is also available as an option.

As well as the head-up display, the Kona is available with a number of active driver assistance systems. These include autonomous emergency braking, lane keeping assist, rear-cross traffic alert and blind spot detection.

Hyundai Kona pricing: expected to cost from £15,000

Hyundau is aiming for Kona to go on sale in Europe, although it is understood it will be slightly later to arrive in the UK. Pricing and trim levels will be confirmed closer to the launch date, but early estimates suggest it will start from around £15,000. That would slot it directly between the Juke and Ford Ecosport.

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Join the debate


13 June 2017
'Give me a Juke rival with premium features!' Hideous and deeply cynical product. No doubt people will buy it. But it's hideous.

13 June 2017
scrap wrote:

'Give me a Juke rival with premium features!' Hideous and deeply cynical product. No doubt people will buy it. But it's hideous.

Nothing in the motoring world (save perhaps for the prius and the mirai) comes close to the Puke/Juke for hideousness - you must literally be in a minority of one to suggest otherwise. This Kona is incomparably better designed - it's a quite an eye-catching, suave looking thing with some genuine design touches.

And if you think this is a 'cynical' product for jumping on the suv/cuv bandwagon then cars like the F-Pace and Captur must be outright frauds. At least Hyundai (and Kia) have had extensive experience building crossovers, something that can't be said of jaguar, renault and the rest.

13 June 2017
Going to sell bucket loads, surprised at the power and pace of the 1.6 -not technically of course but its not Hyundai's usual priority.

13 June 2017
We saw the new C3 Aircross offering something close to a junior SUV feel with decent practicality and a highish driving position. This Hyundai is just a hatchback with a smidge more height. Far more i20 than Tucson. I don't dislike it though, some silly plastic aside.

13 June 2017
The next Juke will have to up its game with this and the new Citroën looking so good.

13 June 2017
Nothing new to see here, just a pastiche of other brands' ideas - and the budget had clearly run out by the time they got around to the dashboard.

The next Ford Fusion for the Motability scheme.

13 June 2017
Really? Smacks of desperation to me. The interior is incredibly dull - or does that pass for 'premium' these days? Where's the joy in this car? I'm not keen on the Juke itself, but it was at least original and funky albeit in a pretty grotesque way.
The car-buying public gets what it deserves, unfortunately ...

13 June 2017
Bishop wrote:

The interior is incredibly dull

Agreed. Most car brands (Citroen apart) produce incredibly dull interiors these days, not just 2017 dull but, details apart, this Hyundai interior could have come from anytime in the past quarter century or so. Any 1980s Audi interior looks fresher, so does Rover SD1, or Citroen CX, just to give three examples.

13 June 2017
Another good looking bargain from Hyundai which will sell in bucket loads.
Best of all it's another car launch with no diesel option.


Hydrogen cars just went POP

13 June 2017
So it seems Hyundai have just taken ideas from other car manufacturers, the citroen lighting for example. However one thing they didn't take from citroen was the quality, horrible interior, dull and probably extremely expensive! Not to mention the grille at the front.


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