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Hyundai Ioniq 5 review

23/02/2021 The Ioniq 5 is a significant electric car from South Korean giant Hyundai. It is substantial, spacious and stylish. We’ve been testing the Ioniq 5 on Ireland’s roads.

While the world is still obsessing with SUV styling the Ioniq 5 is carving its only space with a homage to the classic hatchback. Hyundai calls the Ioniq 5 a CUV (crossover)… but really, do you see any SUV elements?! Over the years Hyundai to its credit has headhunted some of the best German premium car designers and engineers, and it is no surprise the exterior design features some stunning detail. Built on a brand new platform (E-GMP) the canvas was blank to start with. Head on the Ioniq 5’s striking clamshell bonnet (its first), grille and lights are mesmerising, while the rear light signature is really interesting too. The surfaces are flush and feature design elements that elevates the Ioniq 5 to a true premium level. It’s not all futuristic styling with a nod or two to the past.

From a few angles I’m reminded of the first VW Golf of the 1970s especially at the rear three quarters. As Fr Ted tried to explain to Fr Dougal McGuire about near and far away the Ioniq 5 is surprisingly imposing up close and is far bigger than you’d think from looking at pictures. Compared to the huge selling Hyundai Tucson (4500mm long, 1865mm wide) the 5 is longer by 135mm (4635mm) and 25mm wider at 1890mm. The Ioniq 5 has a lower roofline at 1605 (-45mm). The main rivals for the Ioniq 5 come from the VW Group. The ID.3 is a similar hatchback body form but much smaller in every dimension than the 5 – as is its slightly larger sibling the ID.4 SUV/Crossover has a roofline that’s 7mm higher but again is shorter and narrower too.

A key dimension with Ioniq 5 is its 3000mm wheelbase. This gap between the front and rear axles is huge and this adds to ride comfort but more importantly delivers acres of cabin space. The five seat cabin is very well put together, features lots of recycled materials and has a premium car feel. There is a nice single-piece Mercedes MBUX-like dash top display housing a couple of smaller displays. climate control controls are located centrally below. The tech is pretty straight forward and easy to navigate. The feeling from the front is that you’re driving in a cutting edge EV. There is tons of space, a good split floor boot, a small ‘frunk’ under the bonnet and 60/40 slide, tilt and fold rear seats. Our test car featured a sliding middle console that offer great versatility and helped make the cabin feel quite MPV-like. The two outer rear seats are generous and there is a flat floor that makes shifting about less hassle.

Flush pop-out door handles are a subtle nod to the Jaguar iPace EV and are a nice party trick – the EV charging flap is motorised too! Once you lift your foot over the moderately high sill the driving position is adjustable and visibility excellent. You can sit low to feel more car-like but the seat height can give you an SUV-like tall driving position. The single gear automatic features a rotary gear selector on the steering column. There are paddles to allow you manually select the three degrees of regenerative braking – including a setting that delivers an i-Pedal/single pedal driving function that works like the Nissan Leaf’s original.

Our test car had 19 inch allows and on some of Dublin’s less than smooth roads you could feel the odd bit suspension jitter. On the open road the Ioniq 5 drove in a sublime manner. Dynamically the suspension loads up quite quickly and while the electric motor delivers brisk acceleration, and its rear heel drive delivers that lovely shove in the back feeling, the Ioniq 5 is not a sporty drive. Any hills on the route home will be enjoyed but twisty bits less so.

Rear wheel drive (RWD) and all wheel drive (AWD) versions are available. The Ioniq 5 is available in two battery sizes of 58kWh or 73kWh. The RWD Ioniq 5 has a single electric motor that pushes out 217hp and 350nm of torque. The standard battery Ioniq 5 delivers a GTI-like 0-100km time of 8.5 seconds in RWD form. AWD models are capable of quicker 0-100km times due to the added traction all four wheels driving deliver. The larger and more expensive 73kWh battery in the RWD model delivers the greatest range of up to 481km from a full charge.

The Ioniq 5 has an impressive 800v (inc. 400v) charging system that allows for truly rapid charging via its CCS charging socket (combo AC/DC). At a public fast charger the car can gulp down electricity quicker than most EVs and ultimately this saves users on down time – although this is the dearest form of electricity to buy. Charging at speeds up to 220kW at a DC ultra fast charging station can deliver 10%-80% in just 18 minutes in the long range 73kWh battery version. Hyundai quotes its 800v system in the long range Ioniq 5 has a capability of gaining 111km of range form just 5 minutes charging (88km in 58kWh version)!

The Ioniq 5 has an 11KW on-board charger that converts AC current to the battery’s DC power stored in the battery. During our test we averaged very impressive electricity consumption for a large EV of circa 18kW/100km. At a home EV wallbox Hyundai quotes a 5 hour charge (58kW)/ 6 hours 9 minutes (73kWh). Another feature we will see more of with EVs is vehicle to load (V2L) capability. The Ioniq 5 allows free use of its electrical power to charge any domestic electrical equipment while on the move. this can be done through a socket in the rear of the cabin or outside the car when stoped via a special adapter cable that plugs in to the CCS socket.

Ioniq 5 pricing in Ireland starts from €37,995 for the Executive grade on 19” wheels. Our test car is the Executive Plus from €40,995 with the Premium grade costing from €44,995. The Executive Plus RWD with the larger 73kWh costs from €48,995, The 73kWh Premium Plus RWD costs from €53,495. The range topper is the 73kWh Premium Plus AWD (20” wheels) costing from €64,995. The 73kWh AWD version has a combined power output of 306hp/605nm and is the quickest to 100km with a 0-100km/h of just 5.3 seconds.

Hyundai’s latest ‘SmartSense’ features to make the Ioniq 5 a particularly safe car to drive. Active safety systems include Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA), Intelligent Speed Limit Assist (ISLA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW), High Beam Assist (HBA), and more. Our test car featured Level 2 autonomous driving capability with adaptive cruise and lane keeping. The Ioniq 5 EV is a shockingly impressive car. Michael Sheridan

Michael Sheridan
Michael Sheridan
Michael Sheridan is a senior and highly respected motoring journalist based in Ireland. He is a frequently heard voice on motoring, transport and mobility matters and has multiple credits on national television, national print media, national and local radio and other outlets. Michael Sheridan has been a Car of the Year Judge for more 25 years (& a similar time as a Van of the Year judge). Michael is also an award winning filmmaker. He has produced and directed many international and national motoring TV programmes and documentaries both on cars and motorcycles - including four films on the iconic Route 66. Michael Sheridan is a former Chairperson of the Association of Professional Motoring Press and is a member of the MMAI (motoring media association of Ireland).
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