It seems the Ioniq series of hybrid (HEV), plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and full battery electric (BEV) has only just arrived (hang-on, that’s because here in Australia it has just only arrived!).
Overseas however, the HEV and BEV versions have been for sale for around three years, while the HEV has been available since late 2017.
As a result – Hyundai UK announced on Thursday that the Ioniq was getting a mid-run ‘freshen-up’ to keep pace with its competitors (including one within Hyundai’s own ranks).
The updates will initially apply to the HEV and PHEV versions, but will be applied ‘soon after’ to the BEV. Given the UK is a left-hand drive market – this means the announced changes for the UK should follow on soon after to Australia.
As I alluded to above, one of the competitors to the Ioniq is Hyundai’s own Kona Electric. As the Kona Electric is a more recent design, Hyundai are now taking the opportunity to incorporate many of its best features into the Ioniq range.
These include (to quote from the press release), “1-pedal driving capability, Smart Regenerative Braking, use of on-board functions even while the vehicle is switched off, and Eco+ Mode for extending remaining energy during unforeseeable emergency situations”.
A new driving feature to be added to the Ioniq HEV and PHEV is what Hyundai are calling ‘the world’s first ‘Green-zone Drive Mode (GDM)’. This feature will automatically switch the vehicle’s driving mode in defined areas to further run on electric power rather than the internal combustion engine.
Presumably this would work through the in-car navigation system. Given some cities in Europe and Asia already have diesel vehicle bans, this wold be a useful feature to have when these bans extend to all internal combustion engine vehicles!
Externally, the grill, front and rear bumper design designs have been revised, along with a redesign of the (optional) LED head and taillights.
There are also three more paint colours available – Fluidic Metal, Electric Shadow and Liquid Sand – bringing the previously limited range to a total of eight. Interior changes are more minor, with a redesign of the control panel for the heating and climate control.
The changes will occur for the European Ioniq range in the second half of 2019, so hopefully it will not be too long after that before they come to us here in Australia.