Chevrolet Bolt EV Battles Hyundai Kona Electric: Video
Jan 4, 2019 Anthony Alaniz
Hyundai Kona Electric vs. Chevrolet Bolt EV: Which Is the Best Affordable
Long-Range EV? | Edmunds
Published on Nov 24, 2018
Until now, the Chevrolet Bolt EV and its 238 miles of range had a lock on
the affordable long-range electric vehicle market. But now Hyundai has
introduced the Kona Electric, a similarly sized EV that packs 258 miles of
range for about the same price. We put them through the wringer to see which
one is best.
Q: Are the Bolt and the Kona Electric really competitors?
A: Yes, the Kona Electric and the Chevrolet Bolt EV are competitors. They
share the same wheelbase and overall length, and the Kona is only slightly
lower and a bit wider than the Bolt. Both are four-door hatchbacks, although
the Kona Electric is marketed as an SUV while the Bolt is not. And each is a
front-wheel-drive machine powered by an electric motor rated at 150
kilowatts, which translates to 200 horsepower in the case of the Chevy and
201 hp for the Hyundai.
Q: How are the Kona Electric and the Bolt EV different?
A: The Kona Electric rides smoother than the Bolt because it has a multilink
rear suspension instead of the Bolt's less sophisticated twist beam. And the
Kona's cabin is wider inside, its front seats are more accommodating, and
its interior controls and materials are more attractive. The Bolt, on the
other hand, offers slightly more cargo room and a clear advantage in rear
Q: How far will the Chevrolet Bolt EV and the Hyundai Kona Electric go on a
A: The Chevrolet Bolt EV can go 238 miles on a charge. And to this point
that has been far and away the most electric range offered by any affordably
priced electric vehicle, by which we mean, not a Tesla. The Kona EV now tops
that with 258 miles of range. That's fantastic, but it doesn't put the Bolt
EV to shame. Both have enough to allow spontaneous side trips, skipped days
without charging and even short weekend trips. And we have seen for
ourselves that each of them can manage stints of over 300 miles with
sensible driving in L.A.'s notorious slow-and-go freeway commute traffic.
Q: Wouldn't 300 miles or 400 miles of rated range be better?
A: We're not convinced. How much do you drive in a day, really? Besides,
bigger batteries cost more money, and they also take up space that is better
used for passengers and cargo. The range of these vehicles may represent the
sweet spot. After all, the typical 240-volt charge station can add no more
than 18-25 miles per hour of charging, which is why both take over nine
hours to fill from empty.
Hyundai wants you to think the Kona Electric is an SUV. Go to their consumer
site, and Hyundai lists the Kona under the “Crossovers / SUVs” section at
the top. Why, then, is Edmunds comparing the Hyundai Kona Electric with the
Chevrolet Bolt EV, you ask? On paper, the two are similar in several
aspects. They sport the same wheelbase and the Kona Electric is just a
smidge longer overall. Both are four-door hatches with a 150-kilowatt
electric motor powering the front wheels. The Bolt EV packs 200 horsepower
while Hyundai rates the Kona Electric at 201 hp. What’s strange is that
while Hyundai markets the Kona as a crossover, it’s lower and wider than the
Chevrolet Bolt EV, which General Motors advertises as your standard
However, there are subtle differences between to two that could make a new
EV owner pick one over the other. The Kona Electric EV benefits from a
multilink rear suspension while the Chevrolet Bolt EV sports a cheaper, less
sophisticated twist beam setup. This gives the Kona better handling and ride
quality over the Chevy. Hyundai also packs the Kona Electric with more
standard features than the Bolt.
2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV - Exterior - First Drive - September 2018 008
But there’s another difference between the two that has nothing to do with
the actual vehicles. With both being electric vehicles, they qualify for the
$7,500 federal tax credit. However, GM has sold its 200,000th qualifying
electric vehicle, which triggers the phase-out period for credit. But at
least for the next six months, qualifying electric vehicles from GM will be
eligible for a $3,750 tax credit. In October, that credit drops to $1,875
before falling to $0 in April 2020. Hyundai has the price advantage as
buyers will be able to claim the full $7,500 tax credit on a new Kona
Electric. The base Kona Electric is rumored to have a similar starting price
to the entry-level Chevrolet Bolt EV, which starts at $36,620.
In the end, Edmunds picked the Hyundai Kona Electric as the winner over the
Chevrolet Bolt EV. The Kona’s better ride and handling coupled with more
standard features and the available $7,500 tax credit helped push it ahead
of the Bolt in the comparison test.
+ (kona EV.ca push-back)
The Hyundai Kona EV quietly pushed back in Canada
DEC 28 2018 ... “The 2019 Kona Electric models will be available at Canadian
Hyundai dealers in the fourth quarter of 2018.” Most hopeful owners were
provided estimated delivery dates of October and November when they placed
their $1,000 pre-order deposit. But based on complaints from around the web,
the roll out has not gone as planned ... Dealerships seem to be similarly
out of the loop ...
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