2018 Hyundai Kona: Latest Entry In The Mini-SUV Class

How small can an SUV get? The success of the Buick Encore, Mazda CX-3, and Honda HR-V have proven that the appeal of the SUV body style extends into a size class even smaller than the popular compact models like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Ford Escape, and Mazda CX-5. The 2018 Hyundai Kona is the latest entry in the growing subcompact SUV market, also known as the B segment.

Aimed at millennials with “challenging, action-filled lifestyles,” according to Hyundai, the 2018 Kona has three main areas of focus: 

Appealing Design
Cutting-Edge Connectivity
Class-Leading Safety Features

Unique Styling That Looks Like No Other
The Kona is Hyundai’s first attempt at a new design language that will be followed by the company’s other SUVs as they are restyled over the next few years. While the “Cascading Grille” is new and will soon be seen on other new Hyundai models such as the Sonata and Elantra GT, those narrow, high-mounted combination running lights and turn signals may look familiar – they made their first appearance on the controversially-styled Jeep Cherokee.

Heavy black cladding surrounds and connects the wheels, extending forward into the main LED headlight housings and rearward into the lower light cluster and rear bumper. The contrasting color roof emphasizes the length of the relatively short SUV body and not its height. Overall, the Kona is distinctive but not necessarily attractive.

Connectivity To Please The Most Demanding Millennials
The 2018 Kona combines sophisticated technologies with user-friendly functionality so that both driver and passengers are informed and entertained. The premium infotainment system offers Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a 7- or 8-inch display, HD Radio, rear view camera display, and 4G telematics for total connectivity.

The Kona features the first smartphone wireless charging option in a subcompact SUV. Simply place a compatible smartphone on the wireless charging interface in the center console storage and you can recharge without the need for cables. The system also indicates when the phone is fully charged, and reminds you to remove your phone when exiting the vehicle.

A new Head-Up Display is built into the Kona, projecting a virtual image onto a clear glass panel mounted behind the instrument panel, allowing the driver to keep his or her eyes on the road. Information projected onto the display includes speed, navigation instructions, lane departure warning messages, and audio information. The Head-Up Display is deployed vertically with a simple touch of a button next to the steering wheel, and disappears into the dashboard when not being used.

Safety Features That Protect You
Hyundai is the only car manufacturer that makes its own steel for every car it produces around the world. The benefits of this are evident in the Kona, whose lightweight structure uses over 50 percent advanced high strength steel. This provides superior body strength in a smaller vehicle like the Kona.

High-tech driver assistance systems include forward collision-avoidance assist, which uses a front-facing camera and radar to detect collisions and brake autonomously. The lane keeping assist, high beam assist, and driver attention warning systems also use the front camera to keep you safe.

The blind-spot collision warning system uses the Kona’s radar system to detect vehicles that may be difficult to see during highway driving. The rear cross-traffic collision warning system detects if other vehicles enter the Kona’s reversing path.

The 2018 Hyundai Kona Is Coming Soon
The 2018 Hyundai Kona has just gone on sale in its home country of Korea, and will be available in the US soon. The 2018 will be a contender in the growing subcompact SUV class. And just in case you didn’t think SUVs could get any tinier, Hyundai has announced that it will be revealing one even smaller than the Kona in the near future!


About The Author

Stephen Fogel

Stephen follows the global automotive industry on a daily basis, including new model announcements, new technologies, sales trends, and the latest in "green" cars.