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HY-SOCIETY (some text hidden)
By Jonathan Crouch
Parallel Hybrid power is the most affordable way to get into Hyundai's hi-tech IONIQ Prius-rival. Jonathan Crouch looks at the revised version.
Ten Second Reviewword count: 68
The Hyundai IONIQ was the first car ever to go on sale with three different forms of electric power. You can choose from pure electric propulsion, hybrid or a plug-in combination. That covers all of the major green car bases and pitches the Korean machine into direct competition with the class leaders. Does it have the credentials to beat them? We checked out a Hybrid version to see.
Backgroundword count: 116
Hyundai has come a long way in a short space of time and the IONIQ marks a key turning point for the South Korean firm. No longer does it have to justify itself in terms of value and affordability; now, it has a range of cars to rival the best in every sector it competes in, including the growing segments made up by cars with electric power. And rather than just dabble, Hyundai has launched its IONIQ with three different types of battery power to cover all the bases. Here, we're going to look at the parallel Hybrid version, the first car of its kind to use a proper dual-clutch auto gearbox for smoother power delivery.
Driving Experienceword count: 255
The IONIQ shares the same basic platform as the Kia Niro, which is a very good place to start from. As a result, the Hyundai handles nimbly and takes corners with more composure than you might expect for a car that's main focus is on low running costs and emissions. The only limiting factor is the reduced rolling resistance tyres, but in day to day driving you'll find this car very capable. It also enjoys a tight turning circle and steering that's light to turn at low speeds. You can add some more weight to the helm by selecting the 'Sport' mode, but we find this makes it too heavy. Around town, the suspension is on the firmer side of comfortable but by no means unsettled. And when you head on to freer flowing routes, it's very composed and much less challenged by side winds than its Nissan Leaf and Toyota Prius rivals. The parallel Hybrid version we tried features a 1.6-litre petrol engine with help from an electric motor. It swaps seamlessly between the two types of propulsion depending on which is best for the situation or combines both for maximum acceleration. Driven like this, the Hybrid covers 0-62mph in 10.8 seconds on 15-inch alloys or 11.1 seconds with the optional 17-inch wheels. Accelerate hard in this way and you'll really notice the benefits of this IONIQ's use of a proper cog-driven 6DCT dual-clutch auto transmission, a much better gearbox than the jerky belt-driven set-up used in a rival Toyota Prius and other hybrids.
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Category: Hybrid, Plug-in, Electric & Hydrogen
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