Hyundai says it will launch a cheaper, shorter-range all-electric Kona on the Australian market in a bid to make it more affordable and accessible to more drivers.
Priced from $54,000 before on-road costs in the Elite trim, the “Standard Range” Kona Electric has a 39.2kWh battery and offers 305km driving range (WLTP, so expect a bit lower in real-world driving conditions, and on the freeway). The top-range Highlander trim starts at $58,000.
At the same time, Hyundai is further dropping the price of both its long-range Kona Electric variants by $1,500 and $2,000 respectively, after price reductions from Tesla for its popular Model 3.
The Kona Elite trim now starts at $60,500 before on-road costs while the Highlander is priced from $64,000. In some states, such as NSW and Victoria, a $3,000 rebate is being offered for EVs in this price range.
“The new Kona Electric Standard Range gives customers zero-emissions electric motoring in an attractive, sporty and practical small SUV, and at more accessible price.” Hyundai Australia CEO Jun Heo said in a statement.
“It is Hyundai’s intention to establish leadership for eco cars in Australia. We already have the most diverse range of electrified vehicles including Kona Electric, NEXO our hydrogen-powered SUV and the soon to launch game changing IONIQ 5.
“Hyundai is leading Australia’s charge towards a greener transport future.”
When first launched in 2019, Hyundai chose to prioritise the longer-range Kona Electric with 64kWh battery, that Hyundai says it will now call the “Extended Range” and can drive more than 480km on a single charge.
At the time, it was the only electric SUV option on the Australian market priced under $70,000. Since then, it has been joined by the Mazda MX-30 at $A65,490, the Kia e-Niro at $62,590 and the MG ZS EV at $41,990 (all before on-road costs).
Kona Electric SR
MG ZS EV
Mazda MX-30 Electric
$54,500 / $58,000
Shaping against its competitors, the Standard Range Kona Electric has the same torque as its longer-range equivalent as well as the e-Niro, and while it doesn’t beat the MG and the Mazda on power it has a much longer range plus a smaller sticker price than the Mazda.
It will be available in a range of seven colours. Both white and an electrifyingly blue colour named “Dive In Jeju” can be chosen at no extra cost, metallic grey, blue or red, or a mica dark blue or black are available for an additional $595. A grey/black interior trim can be chosen to complement certain colours for $295.
The Highlander comes with a sunroof but also has a cost-free two-tone black roof option which negates the sunroof.
Both trims come with a range of safety assist features from lane keeping and following, rear cross traffic collision warnings, avoidance assist, safe exit warnings and smart cruise control.
Bluetooth connectivity, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, digital radio, an eight-speaker Harman Kardon system as well as 10.25″ sat nav screen come as standard.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.