Ioniq Hybrid offers new and broader applications of active
safety features, and enhanced voice recognition with the 2019
automotive history for 2017, introducing three new electrified
vehicles based on the same design and chassis — the Ioniq Hybrid,
Ioniq Plug-in Hybrid and Ioniq Electric — and offers new and
broader applications of active safety features, and enhanced voice
recognition for the 2019 model year.
Alert and High Beam Assist are now available; navigation using
natural-language voice-recognition and POI-search database provided
by HERE is optional; and Automatic Emergency Braking, Lane Keep
Assist and Smart Cruise Control are added to the SEL trim.
feature visually alerts the driver if distracted driving is
detected, indicating the need to take a break. Smart cruise
maintains a constant speed and following distance without input from
the driver, and cancels automatically when speed drops below five
The basic Ioniq
Hybrid is available in three trims, with prices ranging from $22,400
for a very basic Blue model to $24,950 for the SEL, and $28,550 for
the well-equipped Limited version.
I drove a Limited
model in Ceramic White, riding on distinctive 17-inch Eco-Spoke
alloy wheels, with wide, flat “V” spokes featuring solid-black
inserts, wearing low-rolling-resistance, high-silica tires for
better all-around performance.
Ioniq (a name derived
from lithium-ION polymer battery and uniIQue) is the
most-aerodynamic hybrid, with a sleek profile, integrated rear
spoiler, wheel air curtains, and underbody cover. The Ioniq uses
significantly less kWh annually and features very low operating cost
per 25 miles driven, at just under $1.
design aids in the incredible fuel efficiency and includes an Active
Air Flap that dynamically adjusts to driving conditions — open for
greater airflow for engine cooling in stop-and-go traffic, closed
for better aerodynamics at cruising speed.
Air is directed over
and around the front wheels and tires by Wheel Air Curtains, while
the Underbody Cover helps smooth air flow under the vehicle. A
sporty hatchback profile is inspired by Ioniq’s aerodynamic
In the hybrid, a
1.6-liter GDI four-cylinder engine, working with a 32kW electric
motor, produces 139 combined horsepower, which is delivered to the
front wheels by a six-speed EcoShift Dual Clutch Transmission with
steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters, and Drive Mode Select for a
nimble drive through traffic and a smooth drive at highway speeds.
Sport mode holds the
lower gears longer and combines power from the engine and electric
motor for maximum performance. Eco mode optimizes gear selection for
efficiency, upshifting earlier to achieve class-leading fuel
Depending on the mode
selected, the Digital Instrument Cluster shows a vibrant changing
color palette and dynamic graphics that monitor vehicle performance.
For example, driving
style will be rated as Economical, Normal or Aggressive. When Sport
mode is selected, a tachometer is shown and colors change to red to
reflect the sense of sportiness. Normal mode is blue and Eco mode is
transmission is a departure from the continuously variable
transmissions found in the majority of hybrids, often referred to as
having “rubber-band-like” acceleration.
Ioniq uses the
gasoline engine and degenerative braking to add charge to the
advanced 240-volt lithium-ion polymer battery with hybrid starter
generator, which is designed to be one of the most compact and
efficient batteries available. This charge can later be transferred
from the battery to the electric motor to the wheels for
acceleration when needed.
The battery pack is
under the rear passenger area, thus lowering the vehicle’s center
of gravity, helping reduce energy loss due to inertia and, along
with the hatchback and 60/40 split-folding rear seats, allowing more
room and versatility for passengers and cargo.
This is the first
time a 12-volt car battery has been consolidated with a high-voltage
hybrid battery. The 1.56 kilowatt-hour hybrid battery can be used to
self-charge the integrated 12-volt battery in the event it is run
down too low to start the car — simply press a “battery reset”
button. A traditional jump start can still be used if the self-start
does not succeed. Both batteries are covered by a lifetime failure
warranty for original owners.
The tester’s HID
headlights with C-shaped LED accents and high-beam assist had
dynamic bending-light function, included in an Ultimate Package
($2,200), and were integrated into the sides of the gloss black
hexagonal grille with 10 chrome-edged fins, adding to the
aerodynamic appearance. Seven LED lights made up the eye-catching
Daytime Running Lights, set deep in black C-shaped wheel air vents.
were also enhanced by the raked roofline leading to the integrated
hatchback spoiler, which split the window, similar to the rear of
the Toyota Prius. LED taillights wrapped around the side to the
hatch, underlining the split window.
The rear bumper
featured a wide gloss-black insert with vertical reflectors in deep
pockets, echoing the design of the front air vents, and a chrome
strip on the bottom edge. The door handles with approach lighting,
beltline, and lower sculpted door edges were trimmed with chrome.
Heated side mirrors had black lower housings.
An aluminum hood and
tailgate reduced weight by 27 pounds, with no disadvantages in noise
or vibration. Aluminum in front and rear suspension components save
about 22 pounds, all helping to increase fuel efficiency.
eco-consciousness was expressed via innovative use of eco-friendly
and recycled/recyclable materials — Bio Thermal Plastic Olefin
with 25 percent sugarcane for soft interior touches; Natural
Plastic, recycled plastic combined with powdered wood and volcanic
stone for reduced weight; Bio Metallic Paint with ingredients
extracted from soybean oil to achieve polished metallic colors; and
Bio Fabric with 20 percent sugarcane.
leather seats were Beige, with satin metallic and gloss-black
interior trim, an illuminated ignition button, LED interior
illumination, and a sporty thickly padded D-cut multi-function
steering wheel featuring a wide metallic lower arm.
Five other exterior
colors are available for the hybrid models: Intense Blue (dark
royal), Black Noir Pearl, Summit Gray (dark blue/gray), Scarlet Red
Pearl, and Symphony Air Silver. Two interior colors are available:
charcoal and beige/charcoal.
My Limited added a
tilt/slide sunroof, heated front seats, an auto-dimming rearview
mirror with HomeLink and compass, auto up/down passenger window, and
premium doorsill plates.
The Ultimate Package
brought headlights with dynamic bending light, rear parking sensors;
Infinity Premium Audio with Clari-Fi Music Restoration Technology
and eight-speakers; wireless device charging for compatible
smartphones; integrated memory system for driver’s seat; cargo
cover; floor console-mounted rear vents; Blue Link Guidance Package;
and navigation, which included an eight-inch touch screen.
Blue Link services
were complimentary for three years, with enhanced safety,
diagnostic, remote, and guidance services. Services include remote
start with climate control, destination search by voice, remote door
lock/unlock, car finder, enhanced roadside assistance, and stolen
vehicle recovery. They can be accessed via buttons on the rearview
mirror, MyHyundai.com, a smartphone app, and now with Amazon Alexa
Blue Link skill and Google Assistant. Some services are also
available with Android Wear and Apple Watch apps.
An uncommon feature
of the navigation system is the ability to coach efficient driving
using knowledge from 3-D technology to predict changing elevations
on the road ahead.
While the small
cupholders in the center console seemed to be an afterthought, there
was a handy integrated tablet holder. Piano-key-style controls on
the center stack were more ergonomic — easy to see, access, and
use. The height adjustment for the front passenger seat was
appreciated by our short occupants.
Apple CarPlay and
Android Auto were standard, as well as Bluetooth hands-free phone
system with voice recognition, HD radio technology, satellite radio,
and iPod/USB and auxiliary input jacks.
In addition to the
usual air bags, my Ioniq Limited addressed safety with an
energy-absorbing steering column, front and rear crumple zones,
blind-spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert and lane-change
assist, lane departure warning with lane keep assist, automatic
emergency braking with pedestrian detection, rear parking sensors,
and a rearview camera.
absorption from advance high strength steel, with minimal cabin
intrusion, protects passengers in a collision. Automatic Emergency
Braking warns the driver visually and acoustically, modulates
braking force, and even applies braking if needed to avoid or
mitigate a collision.
cargo area has 26.5 cubic feet of space — room for golf clubs,
weekend luggage, gardening supplies, or weekly groceries. Front
passengers had 38.2 inches of headroom and 42.2 inches of legroom,
while rear passengers had 37.4/35.7 inches, slightly less than Blue
and SEL models.
Ioniq is powerful,
fun to drive with excellent ride quality, attractive, and
comfortable for daily driving (I didn’t do a road trip), and very
economical to drive.
EPA ratings are 55
mpg city/54 highway/55 combined. Driving mostly in the neighborhood,
I managed 53 mpg, according to the on-board computer.
With a Carpeted Floor
Mat package ($125), the Ultimate Package, and $835 destination
charges, my Ioniq Limited delivered for $31,760.