In-depth reviews

Hyundai Kona review - Interior, design and technology

The Kona has a sharp, distinctive look, with good levels of standard kit and an easy-to-use infotainment system

We're not about to deliver a verdict on how the Kona looks; that's for customers to decide. But there's no doubt that the car's exterior styling is going to split opinion. Hyundai is counting on it, in fact, because there's nothing worse in the image-conscious small SUV market than having a car that fails to provoke a reaction. 

The Kona certainly errs towards the 'rugged' end of the baby SUV market. It has aggressive-looking headlights, complex body surfacing with plenty of creases, and swathes of black plastic around the wheelarches to give it at least the look of something that could go off road.

Hyundai facelifted the Kona for 2021, with reworked front and rear bumpers, slimmer LED headlights and a 40mm increase in overall length.

Inside, there is a new electronic parking brake, fresh trim and a larger 10.25-inch infotainment system for the top-spec Ultimate version. The standard car’s touchscreen also increases in size from seven to eight inches.

There are some new materials used around the cabin, but they struggle to lift the ambience. Overall quality is good, but some might find the interior too dark.

The facelifted model is offered with a more refined choice of exterior colours, which means no more outlandish 'Acid Yellow' paint and contrasting roof options. The standard 'Dive in Jeju' solid paint offers a turquoise hue, but after that the choice is one of darker grey, black, red and blue metallic and pearl finishes - with the ubiquitous solid white also on the options list for an extra £300.

The entry-level SE Connect version of the Kona gets 17-inch alloy wheels, while all other trims receive 18-inch wheels.

The facelifted model includes a new 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, and an infotainment system of the same size which is standard on the Premium trim level and above.

Go far enough up the range and you'll get some extra tech to make the front cabin feel a teeny bit more special; there's a head-up display, for example, which is still a relatively rare feature in this class. 

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

The Kona's infotainment set-up is still one of the best compared to its rivals, with clear graphics and quick responses to any inputs. 

The home-page offers a split screen that splits into either two or three modules, allowing both entertainment and detailed mapping functions to be shown at the same time.

Entry-level SE Connect cars include an 8-inch touchscreen with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and a rear-facing parking camera, while top models also get an uprated eight-speaker Krell audio set-up.

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0T GDi Blue Drive S 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £16,656

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.0 TGDi 48V MHEV SE Connect 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £20,416

Fastest

  • Name
    1.6T GDi Blue Drive Premium GT 5dr 4WD DCT
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £26,191

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