When a new car is launched into an established market segment, it often has a lot to prove. Namely, what is it bringing to the class that could woo buyers away from the competition?
The new 2017 Hyundai Ioniq was clearly designed with that question in mind. Among compact gas-electric hybrids, it debuted with the highest EPA fuel economy ratings (up to 58 mpg) and the lowest base price ($22,200). Those two numbers are probably the two most important pieces of data for a hybrid car, and the Ioniq impresses on both counts as it squares off against the best-selling Toyota Prius.
Hyundai throws in further appeal: It designed the Ioniq to look and feel like a “normal” car. Despite its electric components, the Ioniq is pleasant to drive with a solid, substantial feel. And although its silhouette roughly resembles the iconic Prius, the Ioniq has more muted design details — lest Hyundai be accused of plagiarism, the shape simply reflects the best approach to aerodynamics.