In-depth reviews

Hyundai Kona review - Practicality, comfort and boot space

Not the biggest car in the class, and the suspension set-up means it never quite settles down on bumpier roads

The level of practicality in the Kona illustrates just how quickly the small SUV market is developing. When Hyundai started work on its small SUV, it presumably benchmarked cars like the Nissan Juke and Renault Captur for passenger space and boot capacity.

Compared with these cars, then, the Kona doesn't do badly. But the game has clearly moved on in the meantime, because Hyundai's offering feels less capable of dealing with family life than, say, the latest Citroen C3 Aircross.

There's plenty of room in the front cabin for a couple of grown-ups, and they shouldn't have any problems with headroom. But if there's a pair of six-footers up front, the rear cabin looks a little bit tight for knee and legroom. Again, some of the Kona's likely rivals are considerably more versatile.

Luggage space offers barely any more than many modern superminis. Fold the rear seats down and you get 1,143 litres (S) or 1,116 litres (everything else) - no better than respectable. There are no clever boot tricks like a variable-height floor or dividers, either.

Many buyers won't be put off by this relative shortage of versatility, of course - but the Kona doesn't quite feel like a vehicle that could cope with the lifestyle of a small family.

There's plenty of room in the front cabin for a couple of grown-ups, and they shouldn't have any problems with headroom. But if there's a pair of six-footers up front, the rear cabin looks a little bit tight for knee and legroom. Again, some of the Kona's likely rivals are considerably more versatile.

Size

The Kona is 4,165mm long, 1,800mm wide (2,070 including mirrors) and up to 1,568mm high, depending on which wheel size you opt for. By comparison, the firm's i20 supermini is about 13cm shorter and 6cm narrower. 

The Kona is a centimetre longer than the C3 Aircross, as well as being a little wider. But it's lower, even when fitted with 18in wheels.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

The Kona is a nominal five-seater, of course, but it's still fundamentally a supermini-sized cabin - and you should factor that in if you regularly need to carry four adults. There's plenty of space up front for six-footers, but those in the back seats may complain about a shortage of leg and knee room on longer journeys.

Boot

This gap widens should you opt for an SE model (or above) or a Kona EV; these versions offer just over 330 litres each, which is barely any more than many modern superminis. Fold the rear seats down and you get 1,143 litres (S) or 1,116 litres (everything else), which is no better than respectable. There are no clever boot tricks like a variable-height floor or dividers, either.

Which Is Best

Cheapest

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

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.6 GDi Hybrid Premium 5dr DCT
  • Gearbox type
    Auto
  • Price
    £24,116

Fastest

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

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