Update: ‘Price’ section updated and ‘Verdict’ added.
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 has been in the U.S. for a few months, and one of its main rivals, even though not a direct one, is the Tesla Model Y. The Tesla Model Y was America’s best-selling EV in 2021, as per a Car And Driver report, and here’s how the models fare on paper.
Design & Features
Design isn’t one of the Tesla Model Y’s best attributes. While looks can be subjective, some find it too soft and curvy and lacking the necessary aggressiveness one would expect from an SUV. If you don’t like the Model X or the Model 3 design, there’s a strong likelihood that you won’t find the Model Y attractive.
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 doesn’t look like a proper SUV either. While the Model Y could confuse one as a sedan, the Ioniq 5 could be mistaken for a hatchback. However, it’s aggressive, bold, and undeniably more futuristic. Also, it’s not as small as it looks, although it’s a compact EV, unlike the Model Y, which is a mid-size EV.
The boxy headlamps and rear combination lamps, the clamshell hood, the diamond-shaped silhouette, and the sci-fi pixel-like clusters of the headlamps and rear combination lamps provide the Ioniq 5 an unmistakable, commanding road presence.
Both Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Tesla Model Y feature a minimalist interior, but the latter takes it to the extremes. The Korean model has a relatively conventional cockpit consisting of a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, a 12.3-inch touch-operated central display, a multifunction steering wheel, and an Augmented Reality Head-Up Display (AR-HUD). The simplistic dashboard and the sleek HVAC vents look even more traditional. Physical controls for basic infotainment system functions include a volume knob, but the designers have neatly tucked them in an ultra-slim panel. Thankfully, a dedicated climate control panel is present in the car, even though touch-operated.
One of the interior highlights of the Ioniq 5 is the Universal Island, a moveable center console that can slide back as much as 5.5 inches. Even the rear seats are slidable, up to 5.3 inches, and reclinable. The large panoramic roof allows an obstruction-free view of the sky, as it has no support materials. The previous Ioniq 5 used to come with a seatbelt reminder only for the driver, but the 2023 Ioniq 5 has a seatbelt reminder even for all passengers.
The Tesla Model Y’s interior is a model for reduced design language. The driver faces a low-profile dashboard with a slim, edge-to-edge vent band, a simple steering wheel with two scroll buttons, and a giant, 15-inch tablet-style central touchscreen. There’s no head-up display or even an instrument cluster. Customers accustomed to high digitalization, touchscreens, and hands-free driving would find themselves right at home. However, the bare-minimum physical controls and the lack of an instrument cluster could make the driving experience a bit too complex for some first-time EV buyers.
The Model Y also has an expansive glass roof without any support materials. A big plus for big families in the Tesla is an option to add a third row of seats and accommodate two extra passengers. This makes it the sleekest 7-seat SUV right now; the coupe-style roofline wouldn’t make one think it could have a third row, but it can.
The Ioniq 5 measures 182.5 inches in length, 74.4 inches in width, and 63.0 inches in height. It’s 14.2 inches shorter than the Palisade, and yet, it has a 118.1-inch wheelbase, which is 3.9 inches longer than that of the Palisade. It offers 27.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row, and folding down the second-row seats increases the cargo space to 59.3 cubic feet. It does have a front trunk or a frunk, with 0.85 cubic feet of additional storage space. Select configurations have a larger frunk with 2.0 cubic feet of extra storage space in markets other than the U.S. and Canada.
As we mentioned before, the Tesla Model Y is a higher-segment model. At 187 inches long, 77.9 inches wide, and 63.9 inches tall, it is noticeably bigger than the newcomer from the East. Its wheelbase, however, is only 113.8 inches, 4.3 inches shorter than the Hyundai EV. The considerably longer (and wider) body does give it an advantage when it comes to cargo space, though – 78 cubic feet. The Model Y has a frunk, but Tesla hasn’t disclosed the storage space.
Performance & Range
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is available in multiple power electric configurations. Options vary as per the market, but in the U.S., there are two battery pack choices and three output selections.
Customers get to choose between 58 kWh and 77.4 kWh battery packs. The former consists of 288 lithium-ion cells packed in 24 modules, while the latter comprises 384 lithium-ion cells packed in 32 modules.
The base configuration of the U.S.-spec Ioniq 5 consists of a 168 hp/258 lb.-ft. motor powering the rear wheels and the 58 kWh battery pack. It delivers an EPA est. range of 220 miles. The mid-level configuration also has only a rear motor, but this motor produces 225 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. Plus, its battery pack is the 77.4 kWh unit. It provides a significantly longer EPA est. range of 303 miles.
The top-of-the-line Ioniq 5 in the U.S. uses a combination of a front motor and a rear motor, which effectively makes it an AWD EV. These motors together generate 320 hp and 446 lb.-ft. of torque, and they get their juice from the 77.4 kWh battery pack. The higher performance brings a compromise in the range, with EPA estimating a full charge to allow traveling up to 266 miles (improved by 10 miles with the MY2023 update).
|Aspect||Standard Range RWD||Long Range RWD||Long Range AWD|
|Battery Capacity||58 kWh||77.4 kWh||77.4 kWh|
|Motor(s)||One: Rear||One: Rear||Front & rear|
|Power||168 horsepower||225 horsepower||320 horsepower|
|Torque||258 Lb.-Ft.||258 Lb.-Ft.||446 Lb.-Ft.|
|Top Speed||115 mph||115 mph||115 mph|
|Towing Capacity (with Trailer Brake)||Not Recommended||2,300 lbs||2,300 lbs|
|Towing Capacity (without Trailer Brake)||Not Recommended||1,650 lbs||1,650 lbs|
|Range (EPA est.)||220 miles||303 miles||266 miles|
|Energy Consumption (EPA est.)||31 kWh/100 miles||30 kWh/100 miles||To Be Announced|
|Charging Time (240V)||5 hours 50 minutes||7 hours 10 minutes||7 hours 10 minutes|
|10-80% Rapid Charging (800V)||18 minutes||18 minutes||18 minutes|
The US-spec Hyundai Ioniq 5 supports 350 kW fast chargers, but we’re confident it cannot take their full benefit and charge at 350 kW. Hyundai hasn’t disclosed the maximum supported DC charging input, but it has said that rapid charging from 10 to 80% SoC at 250 kW or higher rate takes 18 minutes.
The Tesla Model Y is available in only two different power electric configurations in most markets: Long Range and Performance. Both have a 75 kWh battery pack and a motor at the front and rear axles. The Long Range variant’s motors generate 384 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque, while the Performance variant produces 456 horsepower and 497 pound-feet of torque.
The Model Y Long Range can accelerate from 0-60 mph in just 4.8 seconds and attain a top speed of 135 mph. The Model Y Performance takes only 3.5 seconds for a 0-60 mph sprint, and with a top speed of 155 mph, it is noticeably faster. The Long Range variant delivers a range (EPA est.) of 314-330 miles, while the Performance variant can travel 303 miles (EPA est.) on a full charge. Clearly, the Tesla SUV is better than its Hyundai rival in every way when it comes to performance and range.
|Battery Pack Storage Capacity||75 kWh||75 kWh|
|No. of Motor(s)||Two||Two|
|Motor Power (Total)||384 hp||456 hp|
|Motor Torque (Total)||376 lb.-ft.||497 lb.-ft.|
|0-97 km/h (0-60 mph) Acceleration Time||4.8 seconds||3.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||135 mph||155 mph|
|Charging Power (AAC)||11.5 kW||11.5 kW|
|EPA Range (confirmed)||314-330 miles||303 miles|
|Energy Consumption (EPA est.)||28 kWh/100 miles||30 kWh/100 miles|
The Tesla Model Y has an 11.5 kW onboard charger that allows charging at a rate of 42 miles per hour. It supports the company’s latest, V3 Superchargers that provide a peak charging power of 250 kW. However, Tesla hasn’t closed the peak charging power the Model Y can receive. The company is working on V4 Superchargers with a maximum charging power of 350 kW, and the Model Y should support them, too. Worldwide, there are more than 25,000 Superchargers now.
The Hyundai Ioniq 5’s maximum towing capacity was 1,650 pounds both with and without trailer brakes. With the MY2023 update, its braked towing capacity increased to 2,300 lbs. However, as before Hyundai doesn’t recommend towing in the base configuration (58 kWh/168 hp/RWD). The Tesla Model Y is a way more capable EV in this aspect, as it can tow 3,500 pounds.
The Tesla Model Y has been a victim of frequent price hikes and now retails at USD 65,990 in the Long Range variant and USD 69,990 in the Performance variant. A USD 1,200 destination fee is additional, applicable on both variants. The 2023 Hyundai Ioniq 5’s prices range from USD 41,450 to USD 56,500. However, the S.Korean model is in short supply and is not available across the United States.
|Ioniq 5 Trim||Power||Drivetrain||MSRP|
|SE Standard Range||168 hp||RWD||USD 41,450|
|SE||225 hp||RWD||USD 45,500|
|SE||320 hp||AWD||USD 49,000|
|SEL||225 hp||RWD||USD 47,450|
|SEL||320 hp||AWD||USD 50,950|
|Limited||225 hp||RWD||USD 52,600|
|Limited||320 hp||AWD||USD 56,500|
We are not comparing these two vehicles to see which one takes the top spot! In addition to being in different segments, the Hyundai and Tesla EVs have their own quirks that make them unique. This article aims to point out the key differences between two EVs which were born not far apart from one another. It goes without saying that the Model Y performs better than the Ioniq 5 in every aspect of its operation. And a higher price goes along with greater capabilities!
Featured Image Sources: Tesla & Hyundai. The compendium is built with press photos released by the manufacturers.