2018 Hyundai Kona Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?
What’s New For 2018
The Kona has been completely redesigned and revamped for this year to match other brands in the mini-ute class. A new chassis made mostly from Hyundai’s high-strength steel and a standard 2.0-liter, 147 horsepower engine lie under the hood of this mini SUV, and all-wheel-drive is an option on all models. All of the technology has been updated to cutting-edge specs this year as well.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Hyundai Kona – The Pros
1. Unique Exterior
The styling on the 2018 Hyundai Kona is truly different than other cars on the road. It has a semi-floating roof that you can customize either to the same color as the body or in black, LED headlamps, and many contours and pop-ups that you wouldn’t expect. Though at first look the exterior may look a bit cluttered, when the Kona is on the road it definitely looks sleek.
2. Solid Engine Choices
The Kona comes standard with a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, paired with a standard six-speed automatic transmission. This 147 horsepower engine does its job quite well, allowing you to accelerate and maintain speeds without a problem. You can also upgrade to the turbocharged engine, a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder that gives a higher 175 horsepower with 195 lb-ft of torque. This turbo engine is paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission.
3. Adjustable Driving Modes
How you drive differs depending on the terrain and traffic around you. Hyundai recognized that with its adaptable driving modes in the Kona. The Kona offers three modes: Normal, which is meant for standard highway driving; Sport, meant for fast acceleration and nimble turning; and Eco, for city driving and gas efficiency. With these mode alterations, the Kona is quick and responsive in all situations.
4. Interior Accents
While the interior is definitely not as bold as the exterior, there are some subtle and interesting interior accents that make this unique and comfortable. The layout of the center console is intuitive, and the seats are good for even long drives. There are also tiny color flairs around the vents and the seatbelts are even color matched to the car’s theme.
5. Center Touchscreen
The 2018 Hyundai Kona’s center touchscreen is quite different than that of other mini SUVs. Their console is more like a small tablet, and navigates as if it is one. The 7-inch screen is a touchscreen, though it also has built-in analog buttons in case the driver can’t accurately touch the touchscreen. It’s quite customizable - anything from navigation to speed and safety can be displayed.
Though this is part of that center touchscreen, Hyundai’s infotainment is a huge upgrade from previous models. The 2018 Hyundai Kona’s infotainment includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. It also can be upgraded to include a wireless charging pad for smartphones (and other devices), as well as 4G LTE WiFi.
7. Active Safety Technology
Hyundai has built in many safety features that you won’t realize you needed until you try the car out. Among these, there is blind-spot monitoring, lane-keeping assistance, and automated emergency braking if a front-facing collision is detected. Since most of these features are automated, you may not even realize they exist until they kick in.
8. Spacious Interior
Compared to other mini SUVs, the Kona feels quite large inside. Though its overall size is about the same as other similar models, the interior is larger due to some ingenious design choices by the Hyundai engineering team. The rear machinery was designed to not exclude interior space. This allows for a somewhat impressive 18 cubic feet of trunk space with all of the seats still up.
9. All-Wheel Drive Options
Though standard models of the Kona do not come with all-wheel drive, it is offered as an option on all models. The torsion-beam axle that powers the non-all-wheel drive models gets replaced with a multilink set of axles. All-wheel drive gives the car a more powerful grip on the road, but does reduce gas mileage somewhat.
10. Nimble Handling
On the road, the Kona handles remarkably well. Whether you have to suddenly change lanes or make a sharp turn, you won’t feel unsafe when doing so. The stable, wide base lets you perform maneuvers that are slightly risky without as much risk. The car also handles well on all types of roads - even the poorly maintained, potholed roads that are found around cities.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Hyundai Kona – The Cons
1. Flashy Exterior
Even though its exterior design is a positive, for some drivers it can be a negative. If you have ever driven a brightly colored sports car, you’ll know that you’re more likely to be targeted for small road violations. Since the 2018 Hyundai Kona looks so unique, it might be more visible on the road.
2. No Hybrid/Electric Option Until 2019
If you’re looking for a more eco-friendly option for your mini SUV, then you’ll have to wait at least another year before Hyundai offers it. At least in the United States, there is no fully electric offering of the Kona as of yet. Hyundai has suggested they may sell a version in 2019.
3. Semi-Sluggish Transmission
When accelerating from low to high speeds or going from high to low speeds, the 2018 Hyundai Kona’s shifting feels just a little bit sluggish. This slow shifting is far more apparent in the Normal driving mode than the Sport driving mode, where this basically disappears.
How it Stacks Up to the Competition
The Kona is putting itself in a class with some instantly recognizable names, like the Honda HR-V and the Mazda CX-3. Though these vehicles are classic in the category, the Kona is so unique and technologically advanced that it definitely shines among its peers.
The 2018 Hyundai Kona is an exciting and flashy subcompact SUV. From its contours and lines to its fantastic safety technology, this is truly a mini SUV you’ll want to get your hands on.
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