2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric First Drive Review: Efficiency & Value For Your Money

Feb 23, 2017 05:37 AM EST | Andrew Davis

The 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric is part of a trio of green cars Hyundai has a recently unveiled. Relatively, they are almost similar vehicles but with different powertrains. Consumers have the option of choosing from a hybrid, a plugin hybrid, and a full-electric vehicle. For this round, let's take a look at the vehicle that raised the bar for green cars, the full electric.

Clearly, Hyundai brought its A-game when it unleashed a trio of green cars. Styling-wise, they fit perfectly in the Hyundai family and with almost the same look, depending on the trim level you are getting. It almost is the same size as the Elantra, too. But it is built on its own platform, of course.

The 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric makes efficient use of lightweight components, faired-over grille, and low coefficient of drag, with a very uncontroversial and mainstream exterior and interior design. A 7-inch LCD infotainment display screen sits on the center.

The EV supports both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Also, there are advanced safety features such as front collision detection, automated emergency braking, Smart Cruise Control, and lane department warning. Standard in the electric is Hyundai's Blue Link telematic system.

Powering the 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric is a 28 kilowatt-hour battery pack with cells from LG Chem, which is enough for a 124 mileage between charges. It produces 118 horses and 215 lb-ft of torque. A fan keeps the battery pack actively cool since it prefers temperatures that people prefer.

It received an EPA rating of 136 MPGe. A "Drive Mode" button is located behind the gear selection buttons. You can switch from Normal, Eco, and Sport modes. Sport provides the driver a bit of lively throttle experience.

One exciting feature about Hyundai's EV is the paddle behind the steering wheel. Instead of switching gears, the paddle allows you to choose between 4 levels of regeneration while coasting and braking. Toggle the left paddle and it increases the strength of regenerative braking. Do the same on the right side and it bumps down the strength. By simply learning to modulate it on and off, you can easily do a bit of driving without having to use the brakes.

ExtremeTech reports that the 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric can be charged at up 100 kW. So a full charge takes 4 hours and a half from a 240-volt outlet or 8-9 hours with a 120-volt charger.

The price tag for Hyundai's EV begins at $30,335, according to AutoBlog. This is significantly lower compared with other electric vehicles such as the Chevrolet Bolt EV.

Derek Marham of CleanTechnica took the Ioniq Electric for a spin and he easily noticed that almost complete lack of noise, except for the road noise from tires. Its acceleration is fine. But compared with its brother, the hybrid, it simply lacks that "launch" feeling.

Other than that, this is practically a good value for your money if you are indeed looking for an efficient electric vehicle. The 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric will hit dealerships this April, with California being the first to get the vehicle and will be followed by other states.

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