The Hyundai Ioniq 5 ticks all the grown-up sensible boxes and looks epic on the roads. Who wouldn’t want one?
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is the first of a new family of EVs from Hyundai, which has since been followed by the Ioniq 6. Expect other Ioniq models in the near future. And expect those to be rather excellent machines, if this first effort is anything to go by.
This isn’t Hyundai’s first attempt at an EV either. Nope, the Koreans have been quietly making decent electric city cars for some time now. The previous generation Ioniq was available as a pure EV (although, you would have most likely seen its hybrid sibling), and for a few years now we’ve seen the Kona Electric grace our streets. You might have even driven or sat in one since they’re used for private-hire vehicle services too.
Worthy as those cars are, Hyundai soon realised it wasn’t going to get a bigger slice of the EV pie unless it placed everything that it had into something that could turn a few heads. And that is with the Hyundai badge adorned on it.
And so we arrive at this – the Ioniq 5. An EV you’ll want to own just from clapping eyes on it.
let’s talk about looks.
Our journey begins where all eyes converge – the design. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill EV; it’s an art piece on wheels. It’s as though the iconic DeLorean from Back to the Future hit the gym, emerged as a muscular hot hatch, and added a dash of Blade Runner’s futuristic allure.
Say goodbye to the commonplace ‘fake grille’ on EVs; instead, behold a luminous motif that appears to breathe life into the front fascia. The Ioniq 5’s front profile exudes purpose, its chiselled sides exhibit audacity, and the LED-adorned rear end resembles a futuristic autonomous vehicle.
This car is a design marvel, seamlessly meeting all aerodynamic and safety prerequisites while appearing to be a creation from a science fiction reverie.
And this is also where appearances can be deceiving. The Ioniq 5, while seemingly compact in photos, is an SUV with the bulk akin to that of a Range Rover Evoque. But that may not necessarily be a bad thing, and it all becomes clear as soon as you get in.
Stepping inside, you’ll be shocked at just how much space there really is. The cabin exudes a sense of spaciousness, courtesy of its light tones and minimalist design, offering an ambience of serenity.
At the heart of the dashboard lies a symphony of screens – a pair of 12.3-inch displays that are as visually crisp as they are captivating. Since they are now built here, Hyundai provides the choice of either a luminous white interior or a more subdued dark option, and either way, the standard-fit sunroof bathes the cabin in natural light, creating the sensation of driving within your own sun-soaked sanctuary.
However, it’s worth noting that the steering wheel may initially overwhelm with its array of buttons. But once tamed, these controls prove to be intuitive, and the interface is a paragon of fluidity. True, physical climate controls would be preferable, but touch-sensitive panels are a marked improvement over the hidden depths of sub-menus.
Hyundai astutely leverages the ‘no engine equals more room’ card when it comes to space. The Ioniq 5 proudly flaunts a capacious 531-litre boot, accompanied by additional storage for your charging cable, neatly tucked below.
Concerned that your cable might be buried beneath a shopping spree? Fear not; an ingeniously designed 57-litre storage compartment up front provides a dedicated nook for it. Sporting a vast wheelbase with three meters of space between the axles, the Ioniq 5 offers more room than a typical BMW 5 Series – and that’s before you engage in rearranging the interior.
The rear seats themselves are adjustable, and Hyundai introduced the concept of the “Universal Island” which enables you to slide the armrest and its charging ports back and forth by 140mm, allowing you to choose between offering your screen-engrossed passengers convenient charging ports or indulging them with extra legroom.
Once this ‘island’ has undergone its tectonic shift towards the rear, the driver can gracefully exit via the passenger door – an invaluable asset when parking in a tight urban setting, without the need for in-cabin parkour shenanigans.
If anyone wants a visual definition of “you get more than what you paid for”, just ask them to step into the Ioniq 5’s cabin.
Of course, being a “Cat A” EV, the Ioniq 5 isn’t out to break speed records; instead, it embodies style and comfort, promising a ride that’s both smooth and elegant. This isn’t a sports car by any means; it’s a car designed to make your daily commute feel like a pleasure cruise.
The suspension is tuned for comfort, ensuring that even uneven roads feel like a well-paved boulevard. However, it doesn’t shy away from handling tight turns, providing a sense of confidence to the driver. Sure, it is wide in proportions, but the car doesn’t feel too fat for local streets. A suite of reverse cameras and sensors come to your aid too when backing up into tight lots.
Even with just a single motor setup and 143bhp, the Ioniq 5 feels brisk off the line, and its good cabin insulation means you won’t notice you’re doing 100 until you look down at the instrument cluster. Should you need to overtake and claim territory on the roads, the 350Nm of torque available is more than adequate without inducing whiplash onto your passengers.
In order to classify it under category A of the COE structure, this Ioniq 5 has a 58kWH battery (smaller than the 77kWh Cat B variants). While it might not shatter records, the Ioniq 5 doesn’t disappoint either, promising a respectable 384 kilometres of range. Even with the aircon blasting on hot days, I managed to get close to that figure, meaning you won’t need to panic whenever the car’s charge starts to go below “safe” perimeters.
Like camping? You can even tap into that massive battery using the Ioniq 5’s V2L system, allowing you to power portable electrical devices on the go. Portable steamboat session anybody?
It’s efficient, near-silent, and handles with calm finesse. Plus, you look damm good while doing so.
stepping into the premium space?
Badge snobs will scorn it, but with such sharp looks, you can clearly see why Hyundai is confident in taking the fight to the premium boys. The Ioniq 5 stands as a testament to Hyundai’s belief that an electric vehicle can be both functional and visually enticing. It challenges the traditional European approach of cautiously embracing electric mobility, proving that practicality can coexist with desirability.
With its groundbreaking design and innovative features, the Ioniq 5 is a declaration of war in the electric vehicle arena, and it appears to find itself on higher ground.
So, if you’re contemplating the leap into the world of electric vehicles, why not do it with panache – the Hyundai Ioniq 5 kind of panache?
Hyundai Ioniq 5 Electric
Engine: Single Electrical Motor
Power: 107kW (143bhp)
Gearbox: Single-Speed (A)
0-100km/h: 9.5 seconds (claimed)
Top Speed: 185 km/h
Battery Capacity: 58 kWh
Drive Range: 384 km (claimed)
Energy Consumption: 5.99 km/kWh (claimed)
Price: S$211,800 with COE (accurate at the time of this article)
Contact: Hyundai Singapore
Photo Credits: Sean Loo (@auto.driven)