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Hyundai's compact SUV Kona revealed, India launch likely by end 2017

The Financial Express logo The Financial Express 13-06-2017 FE Online
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Hyundai have finally revealed their latest subcompact SUV, the Kona, which goes on sale in its home country and will eventually to introduced to markets in North America and Europe. The name Kona comes from the Hawaiian Islands, as are other Hyundai names like the Santa Fe.

Hyundai Kona has a distinct new design, with looks that are quite aggressive by its class standards. The LED headlamps are particularly eye-catchy, which give it a sharp look. It gets plastic cladding on the sides and and wheel arches, which is perhaps to make it look more rugged.

Internationally, the Kona will be powered by a 2-litre four-cylinder engine that makes 147 hp and 179 Nm of torque, and is paired to six-speed transmission. Hyundai claims the Kona will do 0-100 kmph in around 10 seconds and a top speed of about 194 kmph. It will have other engine options as well.

For suspension, Kona gets MacPherson struts at the front. The rear suspension set-up will vary according to front-wheel- or rear-wheel-drive. Front-drive models get a simple torsion beam architecture, while all-wheel drive versions receive multilink array.

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On the inside, the Kona will come with a list of tech goddies. The infotainment system will have Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, navigation, HD radio and 4G telematics. It also gets a first in its category feature - console-based wireless charging. The car will also be able to tell you when the phone is fully charged of if you're leaving it behind while exiting.

Another interesting feature is the heads up display, which will have speed, sat-nav directions, audio info and more. The system does not project directly onto the windscreen, it will display the info on a piece of glass that folds away when not in use.

Safety will be covered by features like Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist that uses a front-facing camera to detect a potential collision and automatically engages brakes, and lane-keeping assist and a driver-attention warning system. Other safety features are radar-based blind-spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert.

There is so far no confirmation on when exactly the Kona will enter the Indian market, or how many of the aforementioned features would it carry. When introduced in India by late 2017, it will compete with the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza.

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