Are you on the market for a new car? If you're looking for the most efficient car, then you have to check out the Hyundai Ioniq hybrid and electric cars!
Over the last few years, I've gotten to drive more cars than I can count. Since eventually we'll be on the market for a new car, it's a real treat to be able to really get to know many different car brands and models.
Last year, we took a cross-country roadtrip in the Hyundai Elantra Eco. It was a tremendous blast, and it was so neat to get to see first hand how Hyundai was working to make more efficient – yet high performing – vehicles.
So you can imagine that I was thrilled to get to visit with Hyundai again, this time in Santa Barbara, and get to know their latest innovation. – the Hyundai Ioniq.
The new Hyundai Ioniq line will have 3 models:
- Plug-In Hybrid
I had the opportunity to drive the Hybrid and the Electric models while we were in Santa Barbara and I was highly impressed. I've driven Hybrids before, but it was my first time driving an all electric car. I'll share a few of my thoughts about both of these efficient models.
Hyundai Ioniq Electric
For some reason, in my head I imagined an electric car wouldn't be as powerful as a gas-powered car. Boy was I wrong! The Ioniq Electric accelerated very quickly and smoothly and handled very well.
The Hyundai Ioniq Electric also features a regenerative braking system, so you can recharge the battery by braking efficiently. There are 3 different levels you can set it at using the paddles on the steering column, so you can choose how much energy the car recaptures.
The strongest level gives you the most regeneration but with very little ability to coast. The lightest setting doesn't recapture any energy unless your foot is on the brake, but you can coast smoothly. It allows you to plan your trip to be as efficient as you need it to be.
It was a really fun car to drive, especially in sport mode! It handled really well and was quite comfortable. I loved the added touch of the cordless phone charger. Just pop your phone in and let it charge while you drive.
The Ioniq Electric is rated to get 136 mpge, making it the most efficient electric vehicle on the US market! That's pretty spectacular since it's set to retail starting at $29,500. You'll be able to get about $10,000 in tax credits if you live in California (including federal tax credits), bringing your costs way down.
If we didn't live in the mountains, I'd be highly tempted to pick up an Ioniq electric when they become available in April. They'll be available on a subscription service that will cover everything except for your insurance premium. They're even offering unlimited mileage, which is pretty much unheard of with most lease deals.
Check with your local Hyundai dealer for more info. But run, don't walk because I have a feeling these cars will get snatched up quick.
Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid
While the Ioniq electric isn't quite on the market just yet, the hybrid model just hit the market. Given that we live in the mountains, I think a hybrid might make more sense for us at this point since driving straight up a mountain can really drain an electric battery.
One reason we hadn't seriously considered buying a hybrid in the past is because of the cost of replacing the battery should it reach its end of life. Hyundai has completely remedied that concern by offering a lifetime warranty on the battery. This warranty only applies to the original owner right now, but that's still pretty great.
They're using a new Lithium Ion Polymer battery rather than nickel metal hydride (NiMH). It's a newer technology that's much more efficient. When Hyundai did testing on the hybrid battery they're using, they were unable to determine the life of the battery because it just wouldn't quit.
I was also really pleased with the interior space in the Ioniq Hybrid. It's more spacious than a Prius, and even a tall man would be comfortable driving it.
There's more cargo space than the competitors too!
One of the reasons that it's more spacious in general is because the battery is placed under the second row of seats rather than in the trunk or somewhere else.
I think our family would be quite comfortable in the Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid. It would make for a very efficient road trip (we go on lots of them!) since the blue model gets 58 mpg, the most of any hybrid on the US market. The average cost to drive 25 miles in an Ioniq hybrid is $0.81. Compare that to $2.24, which is the cost to drive the average new car 25 miles!
Looking at those numbers, it really makes me smile to know that the starting cost on the hybrid model is only $22,200. And again, there will be unlimited miles on a lease, making this an awesome road trip or commuter car.
Head to your Hyundai dealer to test drive one today.
Why is the Ioniq So Eco-Friendly?
Both the electric and hybrid Ioniq models are the most efficient in their class in the US. So you might be wondering how Hyundai did that. I know I was.
Their goal was to make a car with best in world efficiency without sacrificing performance. First, they started by completely redesigning the engine.
Then they looked at what everything is made from and took it to the next level. The interior is made from a combination of a couple of more eco-friendly materials.
The first is Bio Thermal Plastic Olefin (TPO), which is made from 25% sugar cane. Other parts of the interior are made from Natural Plastic, which is a combination of recycled plastic, powdered wood and volcanic stone. This innovative plastic reduces weight by 20%.
The fabric is also Bio Fabric that's made of 25% sugar cane. I love seeing more things made of sugar cane since it's such a renewable resource. It's better to see it used like this than in food!
The Ioniq also uses Bio Metallic Paint, which is an eco-friendly paint made with ingredients extracted from soybean oil that's used to achieve polished metallic colors.
No matter whether you choose a hybrid or an electric, you'll be a winner with the Hyundai Ioniq!