It was an electronic mail I hoped I would by no means have to jot down. “Hello [Hyundai PR person], I hope you’ve got had a nice July 4th. I hate to have to jot down this electronic mail however somebody has simply stolen the Ioniq that you’ve got lent us.” Up till that time, my week with the little subcompact hybrid had been great—in any case, what’s to not like about 55mpg (4.3L/100km)? However there seems to be a stunning hero on this story, one reviled by a lot of the Ars Technica viewers: a related automobile service saved the day.
The Ioniq is not the latest electrified automobile in Hyundai’s lineup—in truth, it debuted in 2016 and, within the years since, has been joined by plug-in hybrid EV and battery EV variations. However for some motive or different, this mannequin yr 2020 Ioniq was the primary time we have examined one. The vary begins at $23,200 for probably the most environment friendly, if most spartanly outfitted trim, the Ioniq Blue. However as is the way in which of the press fleet, ours was a $31,200 Ioniq Restricted, loaded with options like adaptive cruise management, LED headlights, a 10.25-inch infotainment system with navigation (and CarPlay and Android Auto), to call however just a few.
The most important change for this mannequin yr was a midlife refresh, with new, extra aerodynamic styling and a revised inside. The Ioniq is powered by a 1.6L direct-injection Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine that generates 104hp (76kW) and 109lb-ft (148Nm), which works in live performance with 43hp (32kW), 125lb-ft (169Nm) permanent-magnet synchronous electrical motor which collectively will ship as much as 139hp (104kW) to the entrance wheels through a six-speed dual-clutch transmission. The battery is a 1.56kWh lithium-ion pack, and that helps the Ioniq obtain that mixed common of 55mpg, or 58mpg (4.1l/100km) if it is the Blue trim, because of that automobile’s 15-inch wheels (versus the 17-inch alloys of the Restricted).
The automobile is effectively designed for all times as a metropolis runabout. It is simple to get into and see out of, and the experience is sweet on the damaged streets that appear to be an inescapable function of 21st century life in an American metropolis. The Ioniq is remarkably peppy, too—chalk that as much as the electrical motor which is at all times able to ship its torque to the wheels.
Hey, have you ever seen my automobile keys?
The primary trace of the drama to return was at lunchtime on July 5. The Ioniq had been parked for a pair days because of the lengthy weekend and the pandemic, and I wished to come out and fetch lunch, however for the lifetime of me I could not discover the automobile keys anyplace. An hour spent looking out the home and our car parking zone got here up empty. Feeling a bit silly, I emailed the corporate that appears after Hyundai’s press fleet, letting it know the motive force ought to deliver the spare key once they got here to gather the automobile on Monday on the finish of our week with it.
At 6pm, I received a regarding electronic mail from a neighbor, who alerted me to a younger man—most likely not more than 14—whom he noticed appearing suspiciously by the automobile. I went to verify exterior, however there was nobody to be seen. In accordance with safety digicam footage, the child returned 22 minutes later, armed with the keys I couldn’t discover. They will need to have fallen out of my pocket as I introduced in some groceries a few days earlier, and quite than turning them in, he used them to unlock the automobile and drive away.
Let me let you know, having a loaned automobile stolen shouldn’t be an important feeling. Mortified, I let the fleet firm and Hyundai each know, and I known as the police, who maybe didn’t fairly grasp that the crime had actually simply occurred, as a result of they did not ship anybody over till the next morning. (Additionally, making an attempt to clarify that the automobile belonged to Hyundai and wore producer plates which didn’t present up of their database was a enjoyable problem.)
Linked automobiles get a nasty rap on this website. Citing privateness and cybersecurity issues, most of our viewers solely need to examine them when the story issues a safety exploit or embarrassing hack. Since 2017, three years of free Hyundai’s Blue Hyperlink service has been a normal function on Ioniqs. A number of the options are simply there for comfort, like with the ability to remotely begin the automobile through smartphone or smartwatch. However lots of Blue Hyperlink’s options are safety- or security-focused, connecting you to an emergency response middle within the occasion of an accident. And in case your automobile will get stolen, Blue Hyperlink can find and immobilize the automobile so the police can get well it. Which is what ended up taking place on this case—it was even discovered undamaged, though I haven’t got any extra particulars on the place it was recovered, sadly.
From this expertise, I’ve discovered a variety of issues. First, the Ioniq is a high-quality little hybrid, and 55mpg is nothing to smell at. Secondly, I ought to be sure every press automobile’s key’s hooked up to my keychain, which a minimum of has a Tile locator beacon on it. Thirdly, I must be grateful this didn’t occur per week earlier, when the automobile was a $238,000 McLaren and never a $31,000 Hyundai. And eventually, related automobiles can have advantage, and folks ought to know that.
Itemizing picture by Hyundai
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