Hyundai kicks-off its Kona Electric production in Europe

Hyundai has started series production of the new Kona electric at its plant in Nošovice, Czech Republic. Hyundai plans to produce around 21,000 units by the end of this year and another 50,000 next year.

The updated Kona electric model was initially introduced in March, upgrading the vehicle standard to a 114.6 kW powertrain, versus 100 kW from the previous version. The latter featured a battery with a capacity of 39.2 kWh – the new version starts at 48.4 kWh. The ‘Long Range’ Kona model has a 160 kW powertrain and 65.4 kWh battery. The maximum driving range is estimated at 490 kilometres, according to WLTP.

Two variants of the Kona Electric will be manufactured at the Czech plant, with the 65.4-kWh battery pack being equipped with a 160-kW electric drive and a range of 514 km (WLTP). The base version will launch with the above-mentioned specifications of the 48.4-kWh battery pack and a 114.6-kW electric drive for a 377-km range on the WLTP cycle.

Production is expected to ramp up quickly, as the company expects the Kona Electric to represent 15 per cent of the plant’s total production by late 2023. In absolute numbers, this would mean that the above-mentioned 21,000 vehicles will be rolling off production lines by the end of 2023, to be scaled to 50,000 a year later.

Hyundai plans to deliver the electric vehicle to an additional 20 countries next to the current 22 exclusively European markets. This is a part of the major shift the company is undergoing in order to reach its goal of offering only emissions-free vehicles in Europe by 2035.

“Hyundai regards Europe as a core market, which is reflected in our dedication to our customers across the continent. That is why we produce more than 70 per cent of our models – designed with European customers in mind – in Europe. In response to the growing demand for our electric vehicles in the region and with a focus on shortened delivery times, producing one of our most important electric cars in Europe underlines the importance of the European market for Hyundai,” explained Michael Cole, President & CEO of Hyundai Motor Europe.

A right-hand drive variant is also being produced for the UK, Ireland, and Cyprus. Hyundai adds that new destinations for the electric model will also include Turkey and Israel, as well as the islands of Reunion and Guadalupe.

In the UK, the new generation of the all-electric Hyundai Kona will be offered at list prices starting at 34,995 pounds.

The battery cells for the Kona Electric are to come from LG Energy Solution’s factory in Poland, and the assembly of the battery packs will take place “at the same HMMC facility that produced manual transmissions until the end of 2021”.


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