Hyundai Kona Electric Long Range 75 MPH Efficiency And Range Test

By automotive-mag.com 5 Min Read

Recently published EPA ratings peg the 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric’s combined range at 261 miles, up three miles over the 2023 model year. Europe’s WLTP test estimates the vehicle’s range at 319 miles.

We’ve seen several general comparisons between this vehicle and other small electric crossovers, like the Volvo EX30. But how does the Kona fare when tested at extended 75 mph highway speeds?

To find out, YouTube creator Kris Rifa has put the refreshed Kona to a highway efficiency test. He also gives some general thoughts about the vehicle and its charging abilities.

Conditions were pretty optimal at the start of this test. Temperatures were about 14°C (57°F), and there were dry roads and minimal traffic. Wind speeds were low and at his back for the initial leg of the drive. 

Kris was impressed with the vehicle’s efficiency at this early stage. After about 30 minutes on the road in mixed driving, he had driven 53 km (33 miles) for an average consumption of 20.3 kWh per 62 miles (100 km). This is a good result but not unexpected since the driving was a mix of city and highway with relatively mild weather and low wind speeds. 

Despite the low tailwinds, Kris notes that the car has more wind and road noise at these high speeds than he expected. “There are cars in this class that are a lot quieter,” he notes, “but it’s not too bad. This isn’t a very expensive electric car, so I’m not expecting it to be dead silent.”

At the midpoint of the test, the vehicle was still managing 20.5 kWh / 62 miles. At this point, Kris exited the highway and re-entered, going the opposite direction, this time against the wind, heading back in the direction he came.

After completing the return trip, he ended up back at his starting location with an average consumption of 21.4 kWh / 62 miles. Efficiency was unsurprisingly hampered for the second half of this trip, at least in part by light headwinds. This was very similar to the result Kris saw when highway testing the Volvo EX30, which averaged 21.7 kWh / 62 miles (100 km).

By the end of the test, the Kona Electric had gone 132 miles (213 km) and ended the drive with an estimated 33 miles (53 km) of range and 18% battery remaining. 

At this point, he quickly tests the Kona Electric’s charging capabilities. After giving it a moment to ramp up, the Kona pulled 90 kW from a 150 kW charge station on a 19% state of charge. This is reasonable enough, considering the max rated speed is 100 kW.

Based on the Kona’s pack size and efficiency, Kris estimates that had his trip continued, he could reach 184 miles (296 km), slightly longer than the vehicle was estimating when he concluded the test. This would be good for 62.6% of the official WLTP rating of 294 miles (473 km). This is not quite as strong as the result from the Volvo EX30, which met 63.6% of WLTP range. However, since Kris did not run the vehicle down to zero in this test, his estimate should not be taken as gospel.

For comparison’s sake, if we instead use the EPA rating of 261 miles, then this test managed 70.5% of the City/Highway combined range estimate. So, it’s not amazing, but certainly not a bad showing for the smallest electric Hyundai. 

What are your thoughts on the Kona Electric’s efficiency? Would you have expected a better result considering the test conditions? Let us know what you think in the comments below. 

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