2021 Hyundai Kona : 11 must know updates for the facelift model (with pricing!)

Its been less than a year and the facelifted version of the Kona has hit our shores. Here’s what you need to know about the HR-V / X50 rival from Hyundai.

Only two variants at the moment

Which will be the Smartstream G2.0 Atkinson powered cars, in two trims. The Standard will be the entry level car and the Active will sport a lot more kit. News from the grapevine is that the turbo 1.6 will come in later, and will sport a significantly higher output, but that’s a story for another day.

New design upfront

This is the most significant difference you will see with the Kona. Its still as striking as last years model, with the staggered light design, but things are much more cleaner. Especially with the headlamp design. The Active spec cars still come with LED headlamps and foglamps, while the standard 2.0 makes do with halogen headlamps only.

And the back

The same design treatment is given in the back too. Both the tail lamps and bottom light clusters feature new designs, and are cleaner to look at. Especially the bottom cluster which no longer has a plastic insert, and come in red and white colors only.

Running on a new gearbox

Out goes the conventional torque converter 6 speed and in comes a Smartstream ITV (basically Hyundai-speak for CVT) with 8 virtual ratios. In our opinion it should be a better pairing for the 2.0 NA engine that puts out 149PS / 180Nm.
Hyundai Sime Darby Motor’s insist that this gearbox will behave almost like a conventional autobox on the road, with the rubber band effect dialled back so much that it only takes place mildy at high rpms.

Brand new rims

Both standard and Active cars get brand new alloy wheels, with the former getting 17 inch rims and the latter 18 inches in size. Previously the 18’s were reserved for the turbo variant only. What are your thoughts on the new rim design? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Infotainment upgrade

From 7.7 inch the screen is now 8 inch in size. The shortcut buttons that were on the side are now shifted to the bottom. It is  simple system, with the option to customize its layout too.

With Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

Which means you don’t have to search for a data cable to use Android Auto / Apple CarPlay in your Kona. Its automatically connected wirelessly. This is a feature that even major luxury brands in Malaysia lack.

A digital instrument cluster

The Active spec car now comes with a 10.25 inch digital instrument cluster. It shows everything from the raat rnge, fuel consumption, drive modes and more. The meters themselves have a white facia design that resembles the instruments in the Elantra.

Remote start capability

A party trick for the facelift Kona is that you can remote start it using your keyfob. In the standard car, it will run on your last aircon setting. While in the Active, which has an automatic climate control system, it sets to 22 degrees by default. The doors remain locked while you remote start and will shut off automatically after 10 minutes if you do not get into the car. Handy in coping with our afternoon weather.

Hyundai Smart Sense for the 2.0

The Active spec car now comes with Hyundai Smart Sense which includes Forward Collision Warning, High Beam Assist, Lane Keep Assist, Blind Sport Collision Avoidance Assist, and more. Both variants come with twin ISOFIX harnesses and 6 airbags.

New colors and interior trims

Finally the facelift Kona will be offered with 4 new colors, while the Active comes with 5 new colors which are Surfy Blue, Ignite Flame, Dark Knight, Misty Jungle and our favorite, Dive in Jeju. Also new for the facelift is the light beige interior leather upholstery for the Active car. The seats in this grim gets red piping.

There are significant changes made to the Kona to distinct itself from the pre-facelift car. And at RM 119,888 for the Standard and RM136,888 for the Active, its a compelling case too. Both cars come with 5 year / 300,000km warranty and 3 year / 50,000km free service maintenance package. Would you consider this over the existing array of B and C segment saloons / crossovers? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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