An Audi-style clamshell hood drapes elegantly over the front fenders. Signature pixel lighting flashes blocks of LEDs from the headlights and taillights, reminiscent of Tetris and other vintage eight-bit video games. Optional 20-inch alloy wheels in a kaleidoscope pattern are pulled to the corners, muscular visual bookends for a massive 118-inch wheelbase. That wheelbase extends four inches beyond that of Hyundai’s largest SUV, the three-row Palisade, facilitating an absorbing ride and spacious rear seating.
The 39.4 inches of rear legroom is less than an inch from the best-in-class Tesla, though the Hyundai is four inches shorter overall, and nearly three inches longer than a fossil-fuel Mercedes-Benz GLC SUV. the most glaring omission is a rear wiper for its steeply raked rear window.
Compared to the Bravery exterior, the interior is closer to familiar EV tropes. But it’s still a nice place to be, thanks to Hyundai’s usual outperformance in materials, thoughtful details and unexpected features. The brand’s first head-up display incorporates augmented reality directional guides.
A pair of 12-inch screens perch like desk monitors above a slim dash, configurable driver displays and a slim navigation system with intuitive voice commands. Hyundai’s semi-autonomous driver-assist technology, including adaptive cruise control, can steer the Ioniq 5 into its lane with luxury-level confidence, easing stress on long drives or traffic jams . This system incorporates machine learning that studies a driver’s behavior to adjust acceleration and distance relative to other cars.
The Ioniq is the first of 23 global models on Hyundai’s new electric global modular platform through 2025. They include the Kia EV6 SUV, which is already on sale, and a sleek Genesis GV60 later this year. This skateboard layout bundles its entire 77.4 kilowatt-hour battery between the axles for more planted performance. And the Ioniq 5’s plush cabin, smooth ride and charming road manners offered a hopeful taste of what was to come. I drove a top-end Ioniq 5 Limited AWD for the price of $55,725, or $48,225 after a federal credit of $7,500.
A rear-drive Ioniq 5 squeezes 303 miles of range and a frugal 114 mpge from a 225-horsepower electric motor, for $44,875 to start. An extra $3,500 boosts traction and speed with dual-motor all-wheel drive. After the tax breaks, these AWD versions can be had for around $41,000 to $43,000, well below the current average new-car price of around $47,000.