Welcome to Hyundai’s Ioniq sub brand first appearing in 2016 offering three distinct alternative-power sources to battle against the traditional internal combustion (IC) engine. Visually, the first generation Ioniq closely resembled Hyundai’s compact, engine-propelled Elantra with a hatchback design. A mid-cycle freshening arrived in 2019. Ioniq offered three choices of under-hood propulsion: an all- electric EV, a plug-in hybrid electric and conventional gas-electric hybrid (of the non-plug-in variety).
In the 2022 model year, Ioniq evolves into the Ioniq 5 and boldly goes all electric all the time with styling very un-Elantra-like. While the first-generation quietly blended in, this Gen-Two 2022 stands out for all the right reasons with an eye-popping attitude. It’s still a compact but reworked from the ground up providing surprisingly and very appreciative occupant comfort. It also has the highest electric range of any Hyundai to date.
For those new to EVing, welcome. Change never is easy, but Hyundai makes the process fun and relatively painless. Press an electronic start/stop button right of the steering column, select a gear and go. The big difference; an eerie quiet as the rumble of an IC engine no longer is in play.
Hyundai continues offering lengthy, peace-of-mind warranties on all vehicles including emerging EV’s. In addition to a five-year/60,000-mile warranty, a 10-year/100,000-mile EV system warranty is also onboard to ease the transition to all electric.
The Ioniq 5 EV, as with other all-electric vehicles, makes use of new-found room under hood. With a heavy internal combustion rumblings no longer necessary, the traditional engine compartment becomes an open source of open space.
When raising up the Ionic 5 hood, a container holding front windshield washer fluid is visible. Hyundai also repurposes this area for storage of the ‘Level One’ power cord. Other pure EV’s including Ford’s F-150 Lightning pickup truck promote the region as a ‘FRUNK’ (a play on words combing together trunk and front).
Another perk of new-found play space is notable when sitting in the front bucket seats and enjoying extra expanses of leg room. The absence of the gas engine, its thirst for motor oil and vertical transmission floor hump provides oodles of up-front foot fodder. Row two also enjoys enhanced leg comfort too.
It’s all inspired by Hyundai’s Electric-Global Modular Platform upon which the Ionic 5 rests and many future EV counterparts will share including future products from Kia and Genesis, both Hyundai properties. Its skateboard type layout may be scaled up to accommodate mid-size and larger offerings.
Hyundai labels this a ‘crossover SUV.’ In reality, it’s a five-door sleek hatchback. In front, the long hood’s tippy end gently overhangs beyond a long, narrow, darkened structure resembling Ray-Ban sunglass and stretching from end to end. The ends host a pair of ornamental, blocked U-shaped LED-headlighting structures illuminating at night. Hyundai’s oval H logo relocates to an embossed element on the hood.
In back, a narrow checkerboard band stretches from one end to the other Illuminating with red nuances at night. Narrow, strap-like, flush-mounted side door handles teeter out when unlocking via the key fob. No IC engine translates to no rear end exhaust tips resulting in a smooth back end. A rail-thin front A pillar contrasts with a bold, thick C Pillar. Wheel covers resemble something to the effect of circular power saw blades.
Four available trims include: SE Standard Range, SE, SEL and Limited with the rear-drive SE Standard Range checking in a shade under $40,000 at $39,950 and that’s prior to any currently qualifying Federal or State incentives.
Each trim comes nicely equipped with few add ons as upper trims include more technical bells and whistles. Our Limited all-wheel drive tester started at $54,600 and ended at $55,920 after a $1,225 freight/handling and $196 worth of carpeted floor mats representing the most elegant Ioniq 5 offering available.
As with all EVs this Hyundai qualifies for the Federal Government’s $7,500 tax credit redeemable during income tax filing time. However, this credit expires once the Hyundai brand reaches 200,000 EVs sold in the U.S. The all-electric automaker Tesla no longer quality for the $7,500 incentive since sales surpassed the 200,000-unit milestone. Hyundai has a ways to go before tipping beyond 200,000 units sold, probably another seven years or so dependent upon market conditions. However, Congress continues in discussions to tweak or extend this incentive as EV pricing remains out of reach for many consumers.
The SE standard range Ioniq 5 offers rear-wheel drive solely with an estimated pure electric EV range of 220 miles when fully charged. All other trims including our Limited tester included the choice of rear-wheel drive (with an estimated range of 303 EV miles) or all-wheel drive (256 EV miles). These figures represent a significant leap forward from the first-generation Ioniq EV registering 124 miles per miles when fully charged.
Both system receive juice from an under-floor 77.4-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion polymer battery pack. Rear-drive trims offer one electric motor powering the rear wheels while all-wheel drive versions incorporate one motor up front and the other outback. The dual motor choice adds between $3,500-$3,900 to the bottom line and worth the investment if financially feasible as handling gets an upgrade.
Ionq 5 offers the benefits of regenerative braking which converts wheel rotation into newly-created kinetic energy captured and returned to the lithium-ion-polymer battery pack for reuse. Control pads behind the steering wheel (where a previous generation of IC vehicles positioned manumatic transmission gear shift paddles) provide four friction levels. Lift the right foot off the accelerator and the added friction resistance coasts the vehicle to a halt in relative quick fashion depending upon the chosen settings. This technology increases electric range miles while driving, potentially elevating the 256 estimated EV miles when fully charged.
Utilizing a common, conventional household outlet, also known as a Level One charger, takes lots of time to charge Ioniq 5 from a depleted state. During our testing period our average per 12-hour charge using the 110-volt, Level One charging added about 35 miles of electric travel. Hyundai locates the plug-port along the passenger side rear quarter panel.
When employing a level two (240-volt) charger available for installation in private single-family garages, a potent on-board 10.9 kw on-board charger helps fully charge in under seven hours, easily accomplished overnight as drivers sleep and dream of a cleaner future. A 240-volt outlet is the same technology supporting traditional washers and dryers.
Commercially available DC (Direct Current) Fast Chargers allow significantly quicker charge times by delivering DC current into the car’s direct-current lithium-ion battery pack. During the past five years DC Chargers have evolved into two distinct levels of voltage delivery: 400 volts and 800 volts. While the 800-volt delivery system is quicker, not all EV’s are capable of accepting this higher voltage category; Ioniq 5 accomodates both 400 volt and 800-volt DC charging allowing for the quickest charge times currently available.
Changing gears takes place from one of two right-side steering column stalks operated by a simple end twist upward for drive, and twist down to summon reverse. With all chores complete a push at the end of the stalk summons ‘Park.’ The upper stalk controls front windshield wipers. Neither one of the two stalks interferes directly when accessing the start button.
Immediately to the right along the lower dash resides a fully digital cockpit with a narrow, touch-sensitive horizontal black face for commanding HVAC controls illuminated via blue black lighting. Red and Blue arrows summon standard dual-zone temperature while two fan icons control fan speed intensity. One icon controls fan direction. Above resides a single row of push buttons below narrow, horizontal air vents.
However, the eye-catching dashboard element is a flat, rectangular ultra-screen, combining a 12.3-inch rectangular instrument panel information/graphics left and 12.3-inch multi-function map/audio and information area right. Measuring 5.75 inches high and 32-inches wide according to a handy hand-held analog tape measure, this continuous expanse includes a built in audio speaker at the far left end.
The instrument panel screen includes a digital speedometer readout left side and miles-per-empty on the right. Standard in SEL trims and above, a useful/practical blind spot monitor video feed providing real-time movement of side blind spots. The videos pop in in circular feeds temporarily overlaying the left-side digital speedometer, or right-side EV-digital range when summoning the left-side steering column turn signal stalk.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto interplays comes standard, allowing Smartphone Apps and other stored info to play through the muti-function mega screen. Plenty of USB ports abound.
The two-spoke steering wheel includes a circular push button at 8’ O 'clock summoning one of four drive modes (eco, sport, normal and snow). At night, purple pen mood lighting surround circular in-door speakers and highlighted arm rests of all four doors.
Hyundai sweetens the purchase with complimentary plug-in privileges with power partner Electrify America. Electrify America manages more than 800 charging stations across the United States (and approximately 20 in the Chicago area with many located in Wal Mart parking lots) hosting Level 2 and DC Direct Current fast chargers.
Electrify America is offering unlimited FREE 30-minute charging sessions for two-years from the date of a Ioniq 5 purchase. In this era of $5 a gallon gas, it’s like receiving a fuel top-off free for two years. How does this translate time wise? According to Electrify America, utilizing its utra-fast 800-volt DC charger can recharge Ioniq 5’s battery from a 10 percent remaining charge back up to 80 percent in approximately 20 minutes.
The biggest hurdle for Ioniq 5 shoppers in 2022 may involve limited dealership inventory, reflecting the current difficulties sourcing computer chips and supply chain issues necessary for EV health and happiness. If one’s available give it a test drive. It’s a sweet, quiet experience with pricing substantially less than a Tesla-badged offering.
2022 Hyundai Ionic 5
Price as tested: $55,920
Battery: 77.4-KWh Lithium-Ion Polymer
Electric Motor Horsepower: 320
Electric Range: 256 miles
Wheelbase: 118.8 inches
Overall Length: 182.5 inches
Overall Height: 63.0 inches
Overall Width: 74.4 inches
Curb weight: 4,662 pounds
EV system warranty: 10-years/100,000 miles
Assembly: Ulsan, South Korea