The Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid provides a special form of expertise than different PHEVs. Completely pragmatic to some, confounding to others, it’s one that may enable drivers to high 40 miles all-electric in gentle temps and lower-speed commute situations, primarily based on what I noticed, however one through which four-seasons all-electric commuting is admittedly out of the query. 

After absolutely charging the Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid hatchback, I headed out for a cross-town errand effectively throughout the 27 miles of electrical vary displayed on the middle display screen instructed I might do with vitality from the battery. 

However the second I began driving, the engine began, a moderately jarring interruption to the quiet of the electrical motor. 

It was 52 levels outdoors and evenly raining, and I had turned on the local weather management to maintain the windshield clear and heat up the automobile a bit. With no resistive (electrical) heater, the Plug-In Hybrid wants to begin the engine for that—and with the battery full, it’s not completely clear if the engine is used for something apart from its “waste warmth.”

After a short try and push on with out the local weather management (it fogged up rapidly), I relented to the automobile’s logic and let it cycle the engine on a couple of minutes at a time—powering the automobile when it was working, and utilizing a small fraction of the cost.

Even whenever you don’t have to warmth the cabin, there are different indications that Hyundai sees the Ioniq PHEV as a hybrid that plugs in, moderately than a automobile that gives plug-in (electrical) driving or hybrid driving, independently. 

A actuality test on desires and wishes

Different plug-in hybrids such because the Toyota Prius Prime, the late-and-great Chevy Volt, or most PHEVs bought by luxurious manufacturers,  present a mode to basically lock the gasoline engine out, given sufficient cost. Hyundai doesn’t try this with the Ioniq PHEV. It makes these {hardware} and software program choices with out permitting a lot enter from the motive force. Merely put, it feels as if it desires to be in cost. 

Advertising and marketing for the Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid boasts, “Electrical whenever you need it. Fuel whenever you want it.”

That tagline now sounds unlucky. In case your thought of a plug-in hybrid is one through which you desire a brief every day commute freed from tailpipe emissions and want the gasoline for longer journeys on the weekends—or since you don’t have charging entry at house—you may be a little bit upset. However in the event you cost when you’ll be able to and simply let the automobile steadiness these desires and wishes, your gasoline consumption will go manner down. 

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

The front-wheel-drive Ioniq PHEV is powered by an Atkinson-cycle 1.6-liter inline-4 and a 60-kw permanent-magnet electrical motor mounted on the enter shaft of the transmission, making 139 hp altogether. With a separate clutch for the engine, each the engine and the motor will be taken in or out of the combination when wanted. 

Even in its default Eco mode, with loads of plug-in cost, the Ioniq PHEV begins up the gasoline engine if it thinks you want extra torque than the electrical motor can ship by way of its gearing. The irritating half is that this level isn’t all the time in the identical place within the accelerator’s journey. 

Hyundai has advised us that the system will resolve to begin the engine relying on torque demand, driveline load, and even how rapidly the accelerator pedal is being pressed. 

Asterisks apart, very environment friendly

Fortunately the rain let up later within the week and I’d discovered to mood my proper foot and maintain the engine off. With outdoors temps clear and 44 levels, I shut the local weather system off and periodically cracked the passenger-side window to maintain the windshield from fogging up. The route was basically the identical one I’ve taken with various plug-in hybrids—8 miles on the freeway at roughly 65 mph, one other 8 miles on a 50-mph highway with occasional stoplights, then the remainder of the route on a 30-mph road with extra frequent stoplights. As such, the Ioniq PHEV went a stellar 34 miles earlier than beginning up the fuel engine. 

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

Then to see what the Ioniq PHEV can do in its hybrid mode, I set the warmth to 72 and took it on the gently pushed 53-mile out-and-back driving loop I’ve achieved in various hybrids, together with about an equal mixture of freeway, suburban, and rolling nation roads, with altitude rising from 300 ft to 1,000 ft then again. Based on the journey pc I averaged 56 mpg—the identical as just a few weeks earlier on the identical route within the Elantra Hybrid. 

The Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid drove very in another way at decrease speeds than the Elantra Hybrid—far much less perky from a standing begin, with an preliminary awkward pause, accelerator to the ground, adopted by entrance wheelspin from about 3 mph. The Elantra Hybrid was a lot punchier from a standing begin, and apparently with a extra responsive traction system. 

At 3,300 kilos, the Ioniq PHEV weighs about 200 kilos greater than the Ioniq Hybrid and 300 kilos greater than the Elantra Hybrid. The Plug-In Hybrid’s experience is excellent for the mission—and quiet sufficient at freeway speeds—whereas it handles higher than a Prius Prime. Together with it, whenever you encounter a sportier highway and change over to Sport mode, steering wheel heft companies up a bit and shifts present sounds and sensations which can be reassuring to these coming from gasoline autos. Revs experience, shifts occur, and all of it feels timed proper.

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

The Ioniq PHEV has sufficient area in again, however the seats are flat and moderately exhausting—doubtlessly the consequence of sitting partially over a number of the battery {hardware}.

Over about 60 different miles within the Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid, I drove like a commuter would, in a mixture of situations barely favoring freeways, and averaged 46 mpg.

The interface right here could be very easy. If in case you have a cost, you too can press the HEV button, which places the portion of the battery for plug-in operation apart for later and runs the Ioniq as a hybr

Extra for California than Europe

There’s no charge-restoring mode within the Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid both; and that’s advantageous as such modes, often configured particularly for Europeans aiming to journey on the high-speed motorways however save the electrical driving for city facilities, hardly ever save any gas or carbon emissions general.

In its all-electric mode, the Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid will cruise on the 70 mph that’s all-important for U.S. freeway commuting, and with its climate-control’s cooling system electrified it appears excellent for California use. Simply spare the warmth if you wish to run on electrical.

At current, Hyundai provides the Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid and the remainder of the Ioniq lineup in California plus Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.

As outfitted, the 2021 Ioniq PHEV Restricted value $34,040, together with a $955 vacation spot payment. A 2021 mannequin could be an identical in tools, Hyundai has confirmed, though the colour palette has modified. It’s eligible for a federal EV tax credit score of $4,543, in addition to state incentives in some instances. 

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid - January 2021

Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid – January 2021

This follow-up with the PHEV jogged my memory what an effectivity chief this mannequin line is. Getting 29 official EPA miles—or 34 miles, as we noticed, in chillier climate—from such a small 8.9-kwh battery pack, with a bit of that capability reserved for hybrid operation, is spectacular.

Hyundai isn’t by any means achieved with plug-in hybrids. It has already revealed two new PHEV SUVs this previous yr—a Tucson Plug-In Hybrid and a Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid

Though the way forward for the Ioniq PHEV may be restricted, with the pending launch of Hyundai’s new Ioniq EV brand, it’s probably that Hyundai’s next-generation plug-in hybrids will keep more true to the corporate’s personal wants-and-needs mantra.