The Hyundai Kona

Bold and innovative design in a stunning package


A while ago, we reported on the Hyundai Elantra and commented favourably about its good looks and drivability. Well, here we are, approximately a year later, testing the all-new Hyundai Kona. Whilst not a sedan, this SUV is without a doubt one of the most enjoyable vehicles we have driven lately. Fitted with a host of safety and creature comforts, it is certainly top of its game in the SUV market.

When approaching the car, the aggressive bold front end draws and demands immediate attention. The headlights, grille and driving lights make the car instantly recognisable, whilst the flowing lines enhance the rugged good looks. Whilst not quite as large as its SUV cousins, the Creta and Tucson, it certainly makes up for size with its features and driveability. The assertive good looks will turn heads wherever the Kona is seen.

Fitted with all of the normal features of a modern car, the Kona also has a host of features including a 7-inch centrally-mounted infotainment system that is extremely user-friendly. The system includes connectivity to Android or Apple systems and has a navigation package. This can all be controlled on a touch screen or by accessing the remote buttons on the steering wheel, which is also adjustable. Controls on the steering wheel also allow the driver to set up the cruise control, monitor instant or average fuel consumption, as well as tyre pressure.

The instrument cluster is extremely clear and easy to read. The wing mirrors that fold away are an interesting feature, allowing access to difficult parking areas. Auto headlights, as well as LED daytime running lights are standard. The interior is fitted with black leather trimmed with red stitching. The red finish continues with the seat belts, which gives the interior a modern up-market feel. Although it is not a large vehicle, the interior design is such that there is more than enough space and leg room to accommodate five passengers in comfort. The rear boot space can also be increased by folding the rear seats.

The 1.0 T-GDI three-cylinder version we drove, with 88kw @ 6 000rpm and 172Nm of torque between 1 500 and 4 000rpm, certainly does not lack in performance. Driven through the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox, this model has more than enough power to adequately overtake in town or on the open road, and was very happy cruising at the speed limit in sixth gear, with plenty of power to spare. The fuel consumption tested on this car averaged a very credible 7.2litres/100km throughout the test period.

Driving the Kona is an absolute pleasure in the city or on the open road. The Kona also attained the Euro NCAP 5-star rating award and is filled with safety features including ABS, electronic stability control, downhill brake control and hill start assist as well as blind-spot collision warning, situated in the wing mirrors, and rear cross-traffic collision warning.

A full set of airbags is also standard in the Kona. Hyundai manufactures its own steel, with the Kona featuring a strong light body with 51% ultra-high strength steel enhancing performance and helping to enhance passenger safety. All in all, the Kona is really ahead of its game and I have no doubt it will be a strong competitor in its market segment. 


  • KONA 1.0 T-GDI Executive Manual R379 900
  • KONA 2.0 NU Executive Automatic R399 900

Includes: 7-year/200 000km manufacturer’s warranty (comprising the 5-year/150 000km warranty with a 2-year/50 000km drivetrain warranty, a 5-year/90 000km service plane and 5-year/150 000km roadside assistance

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Issue 83


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