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Hyundai Kona N Line 2024: the test of the week

2024-04-11

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It can be said that Hyundai has hit a home run with the Kona, which quickly became one of the most popular models in its category after its arrival on the market in 2017. With its friendly appearance, practical size, and dynamic driving, the small SUV from the Korean manufacturer has everything going for it.

 

While the Kona isn't the cheapest vehicle in the Hyundai lineup, it's undoubtedly the one that offers the best value for money in the small car segment. Add to that its wide variety of models, and you have the recipe for success.

 

For 2024, the Korean manufacturer's small SUV arrives with a new generation. I must admit that I struggled to imagine how Hyundai could improve upon the first generation. In fact, the manufacturer didn't try to outdo the old model. Instead, it did what it always does in these situations by starting from a blank page, or almost. This formula has worked quite well for the manufacturer for many years. That's why I was particularly eager to get behind the wheel of the Hyundai Kona 2024. In fact, I got to test the N Line version.

 

The driving experience

 

Although it's theoretically not the fastest in the lineup, the Kona N Line is the sport-oriented version. The electric version offers more pronounced accelerations, but its behavior is less sporty, as is its appearance.

 

The first few minutes behind the wheel of the Kona N Line are very pleasant. It's a model that you quickly get used to and that inspires confidence. Accelerations are not too abrupt, and I must admit that it's rather comfortable for a sporty model. The engineers have really done a good job with the suspension, especially during weight transfer in corners. The driving of the Kona N Line is enjoyable in everyday life.

 

Unfortunately, this is not the case when you decide to push the machine a bit. You quickly reach the limits of the Kona N Line and realize that it lacks horses under the hood. Hyundai offered an N version for the previous generation Kona, but it's not back on the menu for 2024, which is a shame. I'm not saying that the driving of the Kona N Line is boring, because it's quite the opposite. I'm just saying that one expects sharper performance from a sporty vehicle.

 

Mechanically, the Korean manufacturer's SUV is equipped with a 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Despite its modest displacement, this engine delivers 190 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. It's paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all four wheels. If you opt for other versions of the Kona, you'll get a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine with 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque. In the case of the electric version, the engine produces 201 horsepower and 188 pound-feet of torque.

 

Regarding the fuel consumption of the Hyundai Kona N, the manufacturer announces an average of 9.1 L/100 km. I achieved an average of 8.7 L/100 km during my test with half highway driving and half city driving, without particularly paying attention.

 

Design and Technologies

 

My biggest concern regarding the new generation Hyundai Kona was that the manufacturer might go too far in terms of design. Fortunately, the designers managed to give it a futuristic look without altering its essence. Thus, we have a Kona with a very angular body shape. I know it's not for everyone, but I love the result. It's bold and especially very different from what you find elsewhere on the market right now.

 

The Kona's interior offers this retro yet modern vibe that you find in most of the brand's new models. Again, it's something I really appreciate. The digital dashboard is clear and quite stylish. As for the multimedia system, the navigation is smooth and intuitive. The new Kona is also slightly more spacious than the old generation, and you can feel it when you're inside.

 

Price and Equipment

 

Despite the arrival of this new generation, the 2024 Kona maintains a very aggressive starting price of $25,999. On the other hand, the N Line version starts from $35,499, which remains very competitive considering what it offers. As standard, the N Line version features stunning 19-inch wheels and unique body elements that give it even more character.

 

Author's Recommendations

 

My verdict is clear: the new generation Hyundai Kona does justice to the model. It retains all the little touches that made us fall in love with the model in 2017. Its modernization is successful, and the N Line version is particularly attractive. Between you and me, it's no coincidence that the model is so popular. I don't need to sing its praises, but I can still tell you that it's a vehicle I highly recommend.

 

Jean-Sébastien Poudrier

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