When Hyundai introduced its first purpose built all-electric IONIQ 5 last year, many expected it to be a pretty standard electric SUV. However, the Korean manufacturer threw the market something of a curve ball introducing a model that may compete in this sector, but offers something unique in its design. In doing so they have delivered a very effective electric vehicle package that has gone down very well with Irish buyers, cleverly combining style, comfort, range and performance.
The IONIQ 5 comes in four specs, Executive, Executive Plus, Premium and Premium Plus. There is also the choice of a 58 kW or 73 KW battery and rear wheel, or all wheel drive options. Prices range from €37,995 to €64,995 including a €5,000 grant.
- Eye catching exterior
- Big on internal space
- Well equipped and technologically advanced
- Excellent safety features and 5 star rating
- Fun to drive
- Cost of premium specifications
Hyundai describes the IONIQ 5 as “breathtakingly beautiful” and while beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, this is a certainly a design that is very pleasing on the eye. The size of the car is deceptive. It looks almost like a hatchback, but it sits on a purpose built wheel base that means it is actually bigger than a Tucson and only slightly shorter than a Sante Fe in over-all dimensions. This makes it bigger than a Volkswagen ID.4, while sitting lower on the ground gives the model poise and elegance.
The IONIQ 5 exterior styling is indeed very striking and different. It won’t be to everyone’s taste but it has sharp lines that capture its aerodynamic stance and give it a futuristic look with a hint of retro detailing. Creased side styling, flush door handles and rectangular LED lights make the car stand out from the crowd, all of course complemented by 19 or 20 inch alloys.
Inside the IONIQ 5 feels very spacious, looks great and also provides a reassuring feeling of good build quality. Two 12-inch digital screens dominate the dash, one for driver information and one for infotainment system. There are also manual controls for heating and air conditioning. The touchscreen display is clear and easy to use and offers easy Apple and Android connectivity.
As you would expect the rear has plenty of room for adult passengers and excellent levels of comfort. It also has USB-c charging points, ISOFIX mounts and plenty of storage areas and cup holders. Hyundai has something of a reputation for interior innovation and the sliding centre console is a good example of this. There is even a sliding drawer glove box.
Boot space is a very respectable 540 litres and the rear seats can be folded flat or in a 60/40 configuration depending on the load. In fact seating is very flexible, with fully reclining front seats and the option of sliding rear seats.
It is also worth pointing out that Hyundai has made extensive use of natural and recycled materials to make the design more sustainable, including recycled plastic, sugar cane and other plant based materials.
As we have come to expect with the latest electric models, the power and performance of the IONIQ 5 is very good. It is slightly lighter than some of its competitors which means even the lower powered 225 hp rear wheel drive version has a satisfying feeling when you put your foot on the accelerator, meaning it will hit 100km/h in around 7.4 seconds. The all-wheel drive version has 320 hp. Both are very swift and smooth.
Range wise the 58kWh battery version offers an official 384km, while the 72.6kWh version is said to deliver 481km range. Either way it is very healthy for a car of this size. The IONIQ 5 supports both 400V and 800V charging infrastructure without the need for additional components or adapters. At a 220 kW DC ultra-fast charging station the battery can be taken from 10 to 80% in just 18 min, while it charges overnight with a AC home wallbox.
Hyundai also offers a useful online calculator where you can put in a daily commute distance, for example 50km and it will calculate theoretical time between charges, in this case 9 days.
New models always have the odd teething issue, but Hyundai’s recent reliability record is good and early customer feedback is positive. The IONIQ 5 also comes with a 5 year unlimited mileage warranty and 8 years or 160,000 km battery warranty.
Fast and flexible charging and good range mean that daily running costs for the IONIQ 5 will be lower than cars with petrol or diesel power. There will also be savings on mechanical maintenance as well as the peace of mind of the healthy warranty. This makes the IONIQ 5 an attractive long term option as an economical family car.
On the motorway the IONIQ 5 is smooth and quiet with a higher seating position making driving very pleasurable. It feels more sure footed than some electric SUVs making it more responsive and agile when cornering, with steering that feels precise and responsive. Ride wise, heavier electric models can be a little harsh, but the IONIQ is smoother than many and never uncomfortable. It all comes together to make the IONIQ 5 a fun car to drive.
When it comes to safety and driver assistance systems, Hyundai has had an outstanding safety record in recent years and the IONIQ 5 has continued this trend with a maximum five-star overall rating in the Euro NCAP safety test. The SmartSense active safety and driving technologies featured include the latest safety and driving assist features as well as Level 2 autonomous safety technology.
- Running Costs
With the IONIQ 5, Hyundai has once again produced a model that is sure to hit the right notes with Irish car buyers, and provide another attractive option from the Korean manufacturer, this time in the highly competitive electric SUV sector. It has a striking exterior and very spacious interior, packed with all the innovation and technology modern drivers demand. The IONIQ 5 offers good range and charging options, meaning it will be a genuine alternative to many traditional petrol and diesel car drivers. But practicality does not come at the expense of performance and handling and the IONIQ 5 can also put a smile on your face when on the road.