2020 Hyundai Kona Limited new car reviews

Jacked-up ride height aside, the Hyundai Kona comes across as a competent and useful hatchback with enough oomph to move through traffic with ease when equipped with the available 1.6-liter turbocharged inline-four. The Kona even offers all-wheel drive for light off-road excursions or more confidence in bad weather.

While CUVs like the Kona may not serve as a Miata replacement, it’s what the masses are looking at.

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Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard

I wanted to hate this hatchback-gone-wrong, but after taking a 1000-mile roadtrip in it I just couldn't bring myself to.

Don't get me wrong: It's everything car people hate, and a perfect example of how the SUV craze has taken every nice car and jacked it up for no reason. Look past that lift kit, though, and it's a really nice little hatchback. The shape and size is perfect, the seats are comfortable, the interior in our loaded tester is quite nice, and it drives really, really well.

It's even fast, thanks to a speedy dual-clutch and a torquey little turbocharged drivetrain. Faults? Well, it's too tall, but that's nothing a new set of springs won't fix. Oh, and that dual-clutch transmission, while quite good, is the worst part of an otherwise excellent car. That's not to say the transmission is bad, just that it's not as good as VW's DSG. Otherwise, it just needs a limited-slip differential, since this thing will spin one wheel for the first three gears on anything but perfect concrete. Neat!

Would I buy one? Absolutely, but I doubt I'd make it a week before I caved in and lowered it a few inches.

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