2021 Hyundai Kona Facelift On the Way, Hi-Performance Version As Well

The 2021 Hyundai Kona is about to get a mid-cycle refresh. Those are the latest reports about the small crossover, which has been around for just a couple of years but has already managed to mark some pretty impressive sales numbers. The company wants to use this momentum, so a facelift is on the way, which should boost sales even more. At this point, we still don’t know the exact details, but it looks like we are about to see all kinds of interesting novelties.

As you may presume, the focus will be on aesthetics, as we count on some nice styling updates. Also, we expect to see a performance, N-badged version, just like it was the case with the Veloster, I30 etc. For this occasion, we count on loads of upgrades, including the same 2.0-liter turbo-four engine. Given all the changes, the 2021 Hyundai Kona should hit the market a little bit earlier than usual, maybe already in the third quarter of the year.

2021 Hyundai Kona N

2021 Hyundai Kona Changes

This is expected to be a typical facelift, so we may presume the changes that are about to come. Naturally, the focus will be on aesthetics, as we expect to see novelties in terms of styling, particularly at the front. The 2021 Hyundai Kona should come with a new face, though we still don’t know the details. Still, we don’t expect to see any radical changes, considering that the current model has been around since 2017. That isn’t too much time, so there is no real need for more significant modifications, especially if we consider that the current model looks pretty good. Therefore, we will most likely see smaller modifications on parts like the bumper, grille etc. Headlights, on the other side, will probably remain the same.

2021 Hyundai Kona N

One of the biggest novelties for the next year will be the addition of a hi-performance version, with the famous N badge. This version will come with significant upgrades in various aspects. Of course, one of the first things that come to mind is a new engine. We have no doubt it will be a new 2.0-liter turbo, which can be found in the Veloster N as well. This engine delivers a pretty impressive output of 275 horsepower, though the exact output may be changed for this occasion. Of course, we also count on the new dual-clutch transmission.

Besides new powertrain, the 2021 Hyundai Kona N will also come with other interesting upgrades. Of course, visual novelties come to mind first, and we expect to see pretty much the same approach as in the Veloster and I30. Still, those mechanical upgrades seem more important and the latest reports suggest upgrades on both suspension and steering.

2021 Hyundai Kona rear

2021 Hyundai Kona Engines

The new turbo-four will be reserved for the hi-performance version. On the other side, the rest of the lineup should continue in the same way. In North America, this means two familiar gasoline engine options in the offer. Base models will carry on with a 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated engine, which is good for 147 horsepower and 133 pound-feet of torque. Still, an optional 1.6-liter turbo-four is definitely a much better choice, as it delivers around 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. Thanks to more power and significantly more torque, driving dynamics are actually far better.

A great thing to know is that both engines feature a pretty good fuel economy. The base engine returns around 27 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. The turbo-four is slightly better in the city and also slightly worse on the highway (28/32 city/highway).


When it comes to interior design, we don’t expect bigger changes. The current model features pretty modern design and also pretty high overall quality. Moreover, only a few models in the class can match the Kona’s overall quality. This cabin looks good but definitely isn’t the most spacious one in the segment. While the front seats are quite generous in space, the rear bench seems a little bit cramped and definitely isn’t a pleasant place for taller passengers. When it comes to the cargo space, you may count on about 19 cubic feet behind the rear seat, while the overall capacity goes around 46 cubic feet.

The 2021 Hyundai Kona probably won’t feature any bigger change, but we may see some interesting novelties in terms of standard features. Novelties on the list of standard equipment are always welcome, though the current model is already pretty decent in this aspect, as it comes standard with things like a 7-inch touch screen, two USB ports, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a six-speaker stereo. Of course, there are numerous optional features and some of them could be added to the list of standard equipment.

2021 Hyundai Kona Interior

Release Date and Price

We expect to see 2021 Hyundai Kona sometime in the third quarter of the year. Also, the price should remain pretty much the same, at least when it comes to base models, which currently go around 20.000 dollars.

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