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2020 Hyundai Ioniq Electric goes farther, but costs more

With an estimated 170-mile range, the Ioniq Electric will go farther than a base Nissan Leaf.

2020 Hyundai Ioniq Electric
More range, but more money now, too.

The 2020 Hyundai Ioniq Electric will go 46 miles farther, thanks to a big battery upgrade. On Tuesday, the South Korean automaker said its entry-level EV now boasts a range of 170 miles, which Hyundai gladly pointed out is greater than a base Nissan Leaf gets.

The big range boost comes from a bigger battery. There's now a 38.3 kilowatt-hour battery in place, which replaces the 28-kWh unit from before. The onboard charger will juice the bigger battery up even quicker, too. Charging speeds are up from 6.6 kW to 7.2 kW, and the Ioniq Electric still accepts DC fast-charging. Hooking it up to a DC charger will show an 80% battery charge in just under one hour.

It's not just a party for the battery, though. The electric motor will pump out more power with the larger battery in place; horsepower jumps from 118 hp to 134 hp, but torque remains the same at 218 pound-feet.

Overall, the Ioniq Electric gets a well-deserved refresh to keep things updated. There are new bumpers and a new grille pattern, while LED headlights and taillights jazz things up at night. The interior looks fresh, too, with new dark chrome trim, new instrument panels and cover for the upper console. There's also a 10.25-inch touchscreen available now, while an 8.0-inch unit is standard.

Standard equipment grows to include more active safety features such as adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist and automatic high beams. Climbing into the range-topping Limited model reveals Harman Kardon audio, blind-spot monitors and new ambient lighting among other comforts. Every Ioniq Electric also gets a new Eco-Plus mode to help conserve battery energy.

All the improvements do include a pretty big price increase. The cheapest Ioniq Electric will now cost $34,040, or $2,730 more than last year. The Limited trim increases to $39,610. While there's more range than an entry-level Leaf, the Ioniq Electric now costs more. Of course, both are eligible for the full $7,500 federal tax credit to help offset the cost. Just keep in mind that it's only available from some US dealers, not nationwide.

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