Hyundai initially unveiled the second-generation Kona late last year by sharing a few images without going into too much detail. Fortunately, an expanded photo gallery is now available and comes with additional technical specifications. We can finally look inside and out to find how much the crossover has changed in the relatively short timeframe since the original model went on sale less than six years ago.
Larger than its predecessor, the 2024 Kona has a wheelbase stretched 60 millimeters (2.3 inches) to 2,660 mm (104.7 inches). The overall length has increased by 145 mm (5.7 in) to 4,350 mm (171.2 in) while the width is now 1,825 mm (71.9 in). When fitted with 17-inch tires, the subcompact crossover measures 1,580 mm (62.2 inches) tall. These dimensions are for ICE and hybrid models. That said, the EV proportions should be very similar as they will be on the same platform.
At home in South Korea, Hyundai intends to sell the new Kona with a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter petrol engine producing 147 horsepower and 180 Newton-meters (132 pound-feet) of torque sent to the wheels via a CVT. Step up to the turbocharged 1.6-liter factory and you get 195 hp and 265 Nm (195 lb-ft) along with an eight-speed automatic.
As far as the hybrid is concerned, it uses a bespoke 1.6-liter unit that works in tandem with the electric motor to provide “impressive acceleration and high efficiency.” Combined output has been rated at 139 hp and 265 Nm (195 lb-ft) sent to the road via a six-speed automatic dual-clutch.
In terms of practicality, cargo volume with the rear seats folded is 723 liters (25.5 cubic feet) while the shift-by-wire gear selector creates a more spacious front compartment with ample space for large bags. Hyundai also touts best-in-class shoulder room for rear passengers and an electric programmable tailgate that allows owners to select the opening height and even the speed at which it opens and closes.
Memory seat, wireless charging, and OTA updates are supported, along with NFC technology to turn your smartphone or smartwatch into a digital key. The cab should be quieter than before thanks to additional sound-absorbing materials, double-laminated sound-insulated glass in the windshield, thicker floor mats and sound-absorbing tires for the 19-inch wheels.
Even though the second-generation Kona now has a pair of 12.3-inch displays, you still get plenty of physical buttons on the center console for quickly accessing frequently used functions. We’d argue this layout is the best of both worlds over having to cram everything into infotainment or cluttering up the dashboard with too many physical controls.
Hyundai plans to provide more information about the global model in March when we will also learn about the Kona EV.