First Look Review: The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric addresses its predecessor’s shortcomings

  • Hyundai's electric small SUV gets bigger and comfier for its second generation
  • Delivers a range of up to 261 miles (EPA-est.)
  • Features frunk, V2L, and many other new features for more space and utility
  • The first units are already at U.S. dealers; priced from USD 34,010

Update: ‘Driving Impressions’ and ‘Price & Release Date’ sections revised.

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric is the second generation of the brand’s electric small SUV and packs a host of significant upgrades in almost every aspect. The snazzy new electric SUV was showcased in the Meta Blue color at the 2023 Los Angeles Auto Show, where I got the opportunity to experience the space, comfort and features of the new Hyundai electric car.


The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric is longer, wider, and taller than the first-gen model, and after seeing it in person at the 2023 LA Auto Show, I can confirm the difference in size is noticeable. I felt that the redesigned model looks more SUV-ish, particularly because of the longer and flatter hood and the increased length. In my opinion, the more upright nose section with the rounded sheet metal grille and the more angular wheel arches also contribute to its visibly more rugged character.

My favorite part of the 2024 Kona Electric’s exterior is the combination of the Pixelated Seamless Horizon Lamp at the front and the Seamless Horizon Lamp, which underscores its futuristic nature and increased width. Another interesting design bit is the formation of an X-shape on the C-pillar, highlighted by a satin chrome molding that runs from the belt line and ends in the rear spoiler.

2024 Hyundai Kona Electric side angle panel gaps manufacturing quality
While the satin chrome molding extends from the spoiler across the windows, I also notice a black chrome molding that runs across the wheelbase to add contrast. Elements like the ‘Z’ shaped parametric surface on the side makes the 2024 Kona EV feel more expensive than it is.


Given the larger exterior dimensions of the 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric, I anticipated a more spacious interior, and this was immediately apparent when I got inside. I noticed that the enhancements in size, combined with a minimalist design approach evident in the slimmer dashboard, sleeker cockpit displays, and cleaner center console, contribute to the roomier feel.

Additionally, the 30% slimmer front seats also play a significant role in making the cabin feel spacious, while the customizable ambient lighting (on the dashboard and door storage) uplifts the indoor ambiance.

I hopped into the driver’s seat first, expecting to be somewhat comfortable after a few adjustments despite being a six-foot-tall person. In my experience, the driver seat is supportive, and under-thigh support is adequate. Headroom, thanks to the height increment, also felt quite generous. I liked the usage of a steering stalk-type gear selector, which I found easier and quicker to access compared to the old model’s buttons in the center console, once I located it. Moreover, I could immediately tell that the center console had more storage space.

The 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system’s brightness felt balanced, and the graphics were crisp. I also wanted to know if the operation was easy and snappy, and I can confirm from my brief experience that indeed was the case.

I tested the various switches and knobs on the dashboard and center console to gauge their tactile feedback, and nothing in here feels flimsy. The addition of new soft-touch materials on the dashboard, door panels, and armrest contributed to a feeling akin to being in a more upscale SUV, but it is hard plastics in other parts of the cabin. Overall, the interior quality felt quite impressive, considering that this is a sub-compact SUV.

One of the biggest cons of the Kona EV was the rear seat. In the back, space levels in the 2024 model felt superior, thanks to the increased body length, wheelbase, and height. The rear seats have enough knee room for a six-foot-tall adult like me to do a roadtrip. Under-thigh support was sufficient, while the headroom is no longer a problem. The inclusion of rear AC vents improves comfort, but the rear seats don’t get heating.

Hyundai has also widened the opening width and lowered the loading height of the boot, which makes accessing the cargo space of the second-gen Kona EV quite easy.

Driving Impressions

The U.S.-spec model is available in two FWD variants, one with a motor that produces 133 hp and 188 lb.-ft. of torque and the other with a more powerful motor generating 201 hp and 188 lb.-ft. of torque. The basic version uses a new 48.6 kWh battery, with a company-estimated range of 197 miles, while the more powerful version uses a 64.8 kWh battery that EPA has confirmed delivers a range of 261 miles.

2024 Hyundai Kona EV frunk front trunk
The frunk gets 27 liters (0.95 cu. ft.) of storage, which holds the car’s charging cable and V2L connector.

Automotive journalists who have driven the 2024 Kona Electric in the top-end variant are impressed. Acceleration doesn’t feel as jerky as in the old model, and a bigger improvement is the new ability to bring the vehicle to a halt in the one-pedal driving mode.

The 2024 Kona Electric doesn’t feel heavier than the old model and comes to a stop swiftly. The redesigned EV handles well, as long as it’s driven normally and not pushed too hard into the corners. These impressions are based on a short drive of pre-production prototypes, and Hyundai is expected to conduct a proper media drive with series production units closer to launch, following which we’ll get the full picture.

Aspect2024 Hyundai Kona Electric Standard Range Specification2024 Hyundai Kona Electric Long Range Specification
Length171.5 in.171.5 in.
Width71.9 in.71.9 in.
Height62.0 in.62.0 in.
Wheelbase104.7 in.104.7 in.
Drag Coefficient0.27 Cd0.27 Cd
Cargo Volume (rear seats up/folded down)25.5 cu. ft./63.7 cu. ft.25.5 cu. ft./63.7 cu. ft.
Frunk Volume0.95 cu. ft.0.95 cu. ft.
HeadroomFront: 39.9 in.
Rear: 38.3 in.
Front: 39.9 in.
Rear: 38.3 in.
LegroomFront: 41.7 in.
Rear: 36.4 in.
Front: 41.7 in.
Rear: 36.4 in.
Shoulder RoomFront: 56.8 in.
Rear: 55.2 in.
Front: 56.8 in.
Rear: 55.2 in.
Drivetrain LayoutFWDFWD
Power99 kW (133 hp)150 kW (201 hp)
Torque255 Nm (188 lb.-ft.)255 Nm (188 lb.-ft.)
Top Speed101 mph107 mph
Battery Pack48.6 lithium-ion64.8 kWh lithium-ion
Range (EPA)197 miles (expected)261 miles
AC Charging Time (10-100%)5 hrs 2 min6 hrs 14 min
DC Fast-Charging Time (10% – 80% SoC)~43 minutes43 minutes
V2LYes, at 1.63 kVA
2024 Hyundai Kona Electric specifications (Source: Hyundai News)

Price & Release date

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric’s prices start at USD 32,675 (excl. USD 1,335). The all-new electric SUV, going by online inventory listings, has started arriving at U.S. dealerships.

GradePowerBattery PackPrice
SE133 hp48.6 kWhUSD 32,675
SEL201 hp64.8 kWhUSD 36,675
Limited201 hp64.8 kWhUSD 41,045
2024 Hyundai Kona Electric prices excluding USD 1,335 destination fee

TopElectricSUV says

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric offers a funky yet not overdone exterior, a classy and roomy interior, along with respectable performance and driving dynamics. Space and comfort are a step up from the first-gen Kona EV. Offering a driving range of 261 miles and retailing at as low as USD 34,010, it represents good value for money. I think it’s a great pick for customers who intend to purchase an electric urban commuter as their first car.

2024 Hyundai Kona EV FAQs

What is the 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric release date?

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric is now at U.S. dealers.

What is the 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric price?

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric’s prices start at USD 34,010.

Which models are 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric rivals?

The 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric competes with the 2024 Kia Niro EV and the 2024 Nissan Leaf.

This first look review has contributions from our reader.