Chevrolet Bolt EV vs. Hyundai Kona Electric

By

Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

Follow On: Twitter | Website

, Automotive Editor - June 12, 2019

Tesla kicked off the long-range electric vehicle (EV) segment with the Model S, but it was way too expensive for the average buyer. Chevrolet saw the vacant slot in the market and filled it with the Bolt EV. With its 238-mile range, traditional styling, and nationwide availability, the Bolt EV built a big lead on the competition. Today, models like the Hyundai Kona Electric threaten the Bolt EV’s title as the champ of mainstream EVs, but has Hyundai done enough to unseat the thrifty and fun-to-drive Bolt EV? Continue reading to find out.

See a side-by-side comparison of the Bolt EV & Kona Electric »

What the Bolt EV Gets Right

In terms of driving range, the Chevrolet Bolt EV was one of the first heel-nipping challengers Tesla had, and it remains a leader in the EV segment with its 238-mile range. But what really makes the Chevy Bolt stand out – or not stand out, rather – is its traditional hatchback looks that are easy on the eyes, allowing it to satisfy the needs of even the most reserved buyers.

Once you’re behind the wheel, the Chevy Bolt EV takes on a surprisingly traditional feel on the road. Sure, it lacks the hum of an internal-combustion engine, but its feedback and acceleration all feel like a normal car. And speaking of acceleration, the Bolt is quick for a low-cost, long-range EV with a sub-seven-second zero-to-60 mph time.

Also, unlike the Hyundai Kona, which has limited availability, the Chevy Bolt EV is readily available on dealer lots nationwide. Sure, dealers don’t stock a ton of them, but they're available everywhere.

What the Kona Electric Gets Right

The Kona Electric’s wild exterior may not be for everyone, but there are buyers who seek this standout appearance. Beyond its big-time styling, the Kona Electric is one of the few Bolt EV competitors that has surpassed it with a 258-mile range. What’s more, its electric motor, which delivers 201 horsepower and 290 pound-feet of torque, makes the Kona Electric a hoot to zip around town in.

The Kona Electric will also keep your family safe in all formats, as it's an IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus and features advanced safety systems as part of its standard equipment. These safety goodies include automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and a driver-attention monitor. These life-saving features are all optional on the Bolt EV.

Stand Out in the Crowd with the Kona

The Hyundai Kona can't quite hang with the complete package the Bolt EV puts together, but its deficiencies mostly stem from its wild appearance. If the Kona’s looks are up your alley, it may be the better buy for you.

Our Verdict: Chevrolet Bolt EV

The Chevrolet Bolt EV got a huge head start on the competition, but models like the Kona Electric are catching up. Fortunately for Chevy, it still has a small lead in the mainstream EV segment with its traditional good looks, peppy performance, roomy cabin, and long driving range.

Take a closer look at the Chevrolet Bolt EV »

Take a closer look at the Hyundai Kona Electric »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

Follow On: Twitter | Website

Privacy Policy|Terms of Use|Cookie Policy|Disclaimer
COPYRIGHT 1999-2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba CarsDirect.com