What is the difference between the ‘new’ and the ‘old’ Hyundai Ioniq

What is the difference between the ‘new’ and the ‘old’ Hyundai Ioniq

On the 1st of July 2021, just at the beginning of the summer holiday season, Blaž Hrovat and I set out to test and find out if there are any differences between the Hyundai Ioniq 2016 and the 2020 model of the same car. Since they look almost identical they should also perform similarly, right?

We did the classical DEMS road test from Ljubljana to Piran.

Basic information about the two cars:

Hyundai Ioniq 2016

  • Battery Capacity: 30.5 kWh (Battery Usable: 28 kWh)
  • Total Motor Power: 88 kW
  • Total Torque: 295 Nm
  • Length 4470 mm, Height 1450 mm, Width 1820 mm
  • Weight: 1495 kg
  • Cargo Volume: 350 L
  • Tires: Goodyear Efficiency Grip 205/55 R16 – circumference 1984 mm

Hyundai Ioniq 2020

  • Battery Capacity: 40.4 kWh (Battery Usable: 38.3 kWh)
  • Total Motor Power: 100 kW
  • Total Torque: 295 Nm
  • Length 4470 mm, Height 1450 mm, Width 1820 mm
  • Weight: 1602 kg
  • Cargo Volume: 357 L
  • Tires: Michelin Energy Saver + 205/60 R16 – circumference 2050 mm

(Specifications from Electric Vehicle Database)

Ready to go.
Blue Ioniq is the model year 2016 and the grey is the model year 2020. The front can be differentiated quite easily because of the ‘grill’ but the rear and the sides are really quite identical.

It was not the first time that the charging to 100% next to the Hotel Nox took longer than expected. Despite three power outlets (Type2 AC, CCS2 and CHADEMO) on the charging station, only one (!) can be used at a time. To make the experience more interesting the mobile network of one of the mobile providers stopped working – no internet connection for three out of four people present during the charging session. With the help of a mobile WiFi hotspot we successfully finished the charging in a bit over an hour (the charging itself took much less time but the whole procedure was time consuming and very inconvenient). One of the cars was above 90% charge and the other one just below that when we started with the charging.

Charging at the Hotel NOX in Ljubljana. Not a great experience with this charging station.

We didn’t just stand around (well we did actually) instead we looked to see if we could find some interesting similarities and differences between the two Ioniq models. The cars are basically identical on the outside and personally I would not blame anyone who would say that the looks are equal. Besides the most obvious visual differences (colour, headlights and backlights, front ‘grill’, rims, …) we found some interesting details that were also different. For example the headlight height adjustment button made a come-back in the 2020 model and the unlock button for the charging cable is present in the 2016 model but not in the 2020 model. It is also hard to understand why the turn signal lights were switched to halogen light bulbs (front and rear) in the newer 2020 model.

The 2020 model has an interesting bug/feature that it is not possible to lock the charging cable before the charging actually begins. Not great if you are using your own Type2 cable on a plug&charge charger where you just leave the cable unplugged until the previous car is unplugged and the very kind owner plugs your car into the charger. 

One more interesting fact. The 2020 model shows live charging power/speed in kW on the screen while the 2016 model doesn’t show it (can be determined by using 3rd party apps, of course). There were other interesting differences in pretty much every aspect. Perhaps the least amount of visible differences was noticeable in the motor compartment.

There are some curious differences when it comes to the buttons. On the left is the 2016 model, with automatic headlight height adjustment and a special button to control the cable locking mechanism. On the right side is the 2020 model with the manual headlight height adjustment and a bit less control over the cable locking mechanism.

When both batteries were at 100% we took a couple of photos, put the Driving Mode to Normal, zeroed the trip meters and took to the highway, direction Koper.

Full batteries at the start. Left photo will always be the 2016 model and the right photo the 2020 model.
Trip meters set to 0 and estimated range visible.

Last thing before we go – air conditioning ON or OFF? Well OFF since it was a pleasant 19 ℃ and partly cloudy. There was only the driver in the 2016 model and the driver with one passenger in the 2020 model. Tailwind was quite strong most of the way.

As usual the target speed was 130 km/h where the speed limit and the traffic allowed it. The traffic was quite heavy, a lot of trucks and also tourists headed to the seaside together with a couple of roadworks.

It took us 30 minutes to get to Highway Rest Area Ravbarkomanda. First stop to check the consumption. Well not all went smoothly on my side and I took the image of the Drive info screen (which includes my morning drive to the Hotel Nox) instead of the Accumulated info, which was zeroed when we started our journey. Unfortunately I photographed the wrong screen the entire journey. Sorry!

We cannot compare the readouts of the average consumption since we have just the average consumption reported by the car from the 2016 model (15.2 kWh/100 km). But we can try to calculate an approximation for the 2020 model since we know the distance (47 km), State of Charge (Soc)  of the 2016 model at 77% and the SoC of the 2020 model at 82%.

If SoC 100% = 38.3 kWh (2020 model) then 1% ~ 0.383 kWh. 18% x 0.383 kWh = 6.894 kWh. 6.894 kWh for 47 km equals 14.7 kWh/100 km. Not exactly reliable or precise but I suppose it is better than nothing (I do apologise for my poor use of mathematical language).  The 2020 model beat the 2016 model in this leg of the trip.

State of Charge (SoC) status at the Highway Rest Area Ravbarkomanda.
Basic shape of the headlights is the same but the inside is a bit different. You may notice a halogen blinker light on the right side. Daylight LED lights are clearly different.
We took off again, the traffic slowly dissipated and the weather became warmer. Next stop, Ionity fast chargers at the OMV Gas station in Koper. The reported consumption in the 2016 model at arrival in Koper was 11.9 kWh/100 km with 106 km driven from the start (SoC 56%). The 2020 model approximate consumption was (again calculated as in the example above) 11.9 kWh/100 km (SoC 67%). The 2020 model was driven with the Cruise Control ON all the time, while the 2016 model did some downhill gliding as well. The 2016 model consumption seems a bit better when going downhill. But the difference seems minimal.
Average consumption and SoC of the 2016 model in Koper after 106 km driven.
SoC state of the 2020 model in Koper.

The batteries (as well as the weather) were nice and warm and as expected the Ioniq 2016 charging speed/power was as fast as usual which means much faster than the 2020 model. We charged for 6 minutes sharp and the 2016 model charging speed (in this case average 64.4 kW) is superior to the 2020 model (average 36.6 kW).

Charging the 2020 model with 36 kW at the Ionity charger. Not great, not terrible. Notice how long it would take to charge from 71% to 100%.

This means that the 2016 model started at 56% and finished at 74% SoC and the 2020 model charged from 67% to 75% SoC. A lot of ink was already spilled over this charging speed difference between the models and let’s leave it at that. For now there is no explanation why the newer model has a lower charging speed compared to the previous model.

Blue sky and red All star shoes at the Ionity chargers in Koper.
VW ID.4 together with two Hyundai Ioniqs.
Ioniq model 2016 charging at the Ionity fast charger. Calculated average power during the 6 minutes was 64 kW.
Ioniq model 2020 charging at the Ionity fast charger. Calculated average power during the 6 minutes was 36.6 kW.

It has gotten quite hot in the sun (around 28℃) so from now on we used AC set to around 24℃ in both cars.

Next stop Piran and the Petrol charging station. Total distance from Ljubljana was 123 km, total time 2h and 5 minutes. The data at the final destination was as follows:

Hyundai Ioniq 2016

  • Arrival SoC 71%
  • Average consumption based on the car data: 11.7 kWh/100 km
  • Total energy consumed: 6.4 kWh + 8.9 kWh = 12.4 kWh /100 km

Hyundai Ioniq 2020

  • Arrival SoC 70%
  • Average consumption based on the car data (calculated from SoC %, as above): 11.8 kWh/100 km
  • Total energy consumed: 3.6 kWh + 13.2 kWh = 13.6 kWh /100 km
  • Consumption based on the EV Watchdog app (not very precise, in my experience): 12.3 kWh/100 km
Total kilometres from Ljubljana to Piran on the screen of the 2016 model. On the right the SoC at 71% at the finish in Piran.
SoC of the 2020 model at 70% in Piran. On the right side we can see the charging power when charging over the Type2 connection AC. Just enough time for a short walk and lunch in Piran.
The charging station was more or less empty all the time during arrival and departure. Parking is free while charging. You just take the ticket when you enter Piran and when you leave you just return the unpaid ticket at the exit booth and tell them you were charging your car.

As usual 4 out of total 6 sockets were operational but  the station was not crowded so it was not really an issue in this case. During lunch both cars successfully charged to SoC 100% so we were able to determine the total energy consumption.

I’ve been told this charging station is still in its original packaging for some time now…
Cantina Klet in Piran. Good food, good location, good prices, good service. Great combination.

So the verdict is in. The Hyundai Ioniq 2016 was (a bit) more efficient on this trip. Was it the car, the driving style or the fact that there were two persons in the 2020 model? Who knows and I think it doesn’t really matter. These two Ioniqs are among the most efficient EVs considering the size of the car.

More importantly we had a great trip, no major difficulties, the lunch was excellent and Piran as beautiful as ever.

Tartini square is the main square in Piran. Definitely a site to see when you are on the Slovenian seaside.
Back at the Hotel NOX in Ljubljana. Everything went smoothly on this trip.

Disclaimer: It should be noted that all the ways the energy consumption is measured is subject to error. There are differences in precision how different cars measure power consumption, how charging stations measure the amount of energy charged etc. Especially in this case where the differences are so small between the cars the numbers should be taken with a grain of salt. Only direct measurements with specialized equipment would provide exact amounts. We tried our best to make it as comparable as possible.

Bonus information

  • Hotel NOX – Piran – Hotel NOX (2020 model): 241 km, 14.4 kWh/100 km (car info display)
  • Piran – Hotel NOX (2020 model): SoC 48%, calculated consumption from SoC – 16.9 kWh/100 km, medium rain for about 10 km
  • Average consumption over the whole day for the 2020 model: 13.8 kWh/100km over 299 km
  • The total cost of electricity for the trip for the 2020 model, if I would charge the car at night at home, would be approximately 3.3 € (taxes are included in the calculated price).
  • Model 2020 consumption from the info screen of the car over 9411 km: 13 kWh/100 km
  • Model 2020 best consumption in the last month (please note, this was not a downhill trip)
  • Model 2016 best consumption also in June 2021. This was proper hypermiling.
  • As an interesting side-note, compared to the 2016 model, the battery in the 2020 model cannot be overcharged.

Author: eMKi

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