The Ioniq 5 Heralds Hyundai's EV Future With Retro Flair

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Photo: Hyundai

The Ioniq 5 is an important car for Hyundai. It’s the first to employ the manufacturer’s E-GMP architecture that will underpin its future electric cars, alongside those from Kia. In terms of design, it’s completely unlike any Hyundai on the road today. And if all goes according to plan, you’ll start seeing it on the road before the end of the year.

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Just as Hyundai promised, the Ioniq 5's exterior shares much in common with that of the Hyundai 45 show car. The 45 does look a bit leaner and more sculpted by comparison, with less cladding along the sills. But overall, the pixelated, retro motif of the concept has clearly been preserved. The classic hatch proportions are pleasing to look at and allow a lot of interior space, as the Ioniq 5's 118-inch wheelbase is actually four inches longer than the Hyundai Palisade’s.

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Photo: Hyundai

While the Ioniq 5 makes a solid first impression visually, it’s what’s underneath that really marks a step forward for Hyundai’s EV offerings. The E-GMP platform features an 800-volt battery system, enabling accelerated charging. Vehicle-to-load capability also lets you use the Ioniq 5 as a 3.6-kW power source for other devices, and like the Sonata Hybrid, there’s a solar panel on the roof that might extend range by a couple of miles on an especially sunny day.

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Photo: Hyundai

Hyundai says that with a 350-kW DC charger, the Ioniq 5 can recharge from 10 to 80 percent in 18 minutes. Just 5 minutes should be enough to deliver 60 miles of range, at least according to the rather optimistic WLTP cycle. In its rear-wheel-drive guise and equipped with the (optional) larger battery pack, the manufacturer estimates a peak range of between 290 and 300 miles. Real-world EPA range will probably be a bit shorter.

The two battery options on offer are rated at 58 kWh and 77.4 kWh. In the rear-wheel-drive configuration, the smaller pack will deliver 167 horsepower, while the larger one will offer 215 HP. Both output values jump with dual-motor all-wheel drive; a combined 231 HP for the smaller pack, or 301 HP for the top-of-the-line Ioniq 5 with both all-wheel drive and the extended-range battery. Hyundai estimates the most powerful Ioniq 5 will hit 60 mph in 5.2 seconds, thanks to a healthy 442 lb-ft of torque.

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Inside, the Ioniq 5 seems airy and simple, with two displays extending from the instrument panel over to the center of the dashboard, and what looks to be a small row of physical buttons dedicated to the climate control. The Ioniq 5's center console and front passenger seat can slide backward for more room, and many surfaces inside utilize “eco-friendly, sustainably sourced materials,” including plant-derived fabrics and plastics made from recycled bottles.

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One cool, weird feature is a pad situated to the left of the steering wheel you can attach photographs and notes to, like a miniature bulletin board or fridge door.

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Photo: Hyundai
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There will be an “augmented reality” head-up display that “essentially [turns] the windshield into a display screen” according to the manufacturer’s press release, though Hyundai hasn’t shed many details on how exactly this feature will work, or what it’ll look like in action.

The combination of charming looks, fast charging and healthy range make the Ioniq 5 quite appealing from the outset. Hyundai is planning to expand the Ioniq line over the next two years, with the Prophecy concept-based Ionic 6 sedan and Ioniq 7 SUV on the horizon. All three will use the modular E-GMP platform and look vastly different from one another, if teases from Hyundai’s design chief are any indication.

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Staff Writer at Jalopnik. 2017 Fiesta ST. Wishes NASCAR was more like Daytona USA.

DISCUSSION

Just on exterior looks alone I really, really like this. Such a clean design that looks cohesive and overall incredibly well balanced. Very modern and somewhat simple and classic. No annoying fake vents or weird bumper creases like to many current vehicles have. Just enough creases/pieces to break up the design.

Not 100% sold on the interior, though I definitely appreciate the simplicity of it, I guess it would probably grow on me.

Specs sure seem great too!