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Test Drive: 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 Limited AWD Review

2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5
2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 / Credit: Hyundai

It’s Hip to Be Square

  • Trim Tested: Ioniq 5 Limited AWD
  • Price as Tested: $55,920 (including destination charge)
  • What We Like: Fast charging; unique design; bright and open cabin
  • What We Don’t: No wireless Android Auto or Apple CarPlay

The Ioniq 5 is the first entrant from Hyundai’s new Ioniq subbrand. Not to be confused with the little Hyundai Ioniq hatchback that the Korean manufacturer made from 2017 to 2022, the Ioniq 5 is a spacious, upscale midsize 2-row SUV with blocky, futuristic styling, pop-out door handles, and a low-slung look – more like a wagon than an SUV. We drove the top-of-the-line Limited trim for a week to see what Seoul has in store for the electrified car market.

2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5
2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 / Credit: Hyundai

How It Drives

All trims but the base Ioniq 5 SE have a 77.4-kWh battery pack good for 303 miles with rear-wheel drive (RWD). Our test car had all-wheel drive (AWD), a $3,500 option. It reduces the range to 256 miles but adds an extra motor and bumps horsepower from 225 to 320. Base SE models have a 58-kWh battery pack good for 220 miles and a meager 168 hp.

The drive mode selected makes a big difference. Drivers can choose Eco, Normal, Sport, or Snow by tapping a steering wheel button. When we got into the Ioniq 5, the acceleration felt weak, but after we discovered that the previous driver had put it in Eco, we switched it to Sport and the 5 became a rocket ship.

The paddles on the steering wheel also help. Pulling on the left or right paddles will increase or decrease the strength of the regenerative brakes, all the way up to i-Pedal mode, which enables one-pedal driving using just the accelerator. We enjoyed this feature but wished it didn’t reset every time we turned off the car.

The standard 350-kW charging capability is fast: It can charge the battery from 10% to 80% in 18 minutes, provided you can find a DC fast charger that delivers that kind of power, which is difficult, even in large cities.

The low and wide 5 has composed handling around corners but can’t hide its weight, meaning it won’t be the dance partner that a lighter gasoline SUV like the Acura RDX would be. (It’s worth noting that the upscale RDX is the same price as the Ioniq 5, highlighting the current weight and price penalty that buyers must pay to go electric.)

2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5
2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 / Credit: Hyundai

Interior Comfort & Quality

The interior of the Ioniq 5 is not luxurious but looks sleek: Illuminated speakers and a completely open front footwell are the standout design choices. The latter allows for a comfortable, lounge-like feel in the front seats. The absence of a center console running between the dashboard and the front seats meant my knee had nothing to hit – this is the first car I remember that felt that accommodating. Speaking of lounges, the front seats offer a pop-out footrest, turning the front into a little nap headquarters (perhaps useful for drivers who can’t find a fast charger?).

The square motif from the exterior carries into the cabin, which has square patterns on the steering wheel and seats, as well as boxy door handles and a square dashboard. The materials feel a little plasticky, but comfort is not impacted. In fact, the Ioniq’s appeal as a smooth-riding highway cruiser is top in the class.

2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5
2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 / Credit: Hyundai

Technology & Usability

A wide, high-mounted panel boasts two 12-inch screens, the centerpiece of the Ioniq 5’s cabin. One screen serves as the driver’s instrument cluster and the other is a touchscreen between the driver and passenger. Both are easy to use, with bright, clear graphics, though that brightness is a problem at night when the driver’s display reflects onto the windshield. The rest of the controls are easy to use, save for the radio tuner, which is, unnecessarily, a switch instead of a knob.

I only wish the phone connections were better. The Ioniq 5 has Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as all cars now do, but they lack wireless connectivity, a surprise in a brand-new car with such high-tech bona fides. Connecting your phone to the USB port is inelegant, too. Drivers need to stretch the cord awkwardly across the open footwell to plug it into the only available USB port. There are two USB ports between the driver and passenger seats, but they only provide charging. 

Read our full 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 review for more specs and information about the entire Ioniq 5 lineup. Carfax vehicle reviews let shoppers compare a vehicle’s specs against its competitors. However, some aspects of a vehicle – performance, comfort, usability – can only be evaluated through actual driving. That’s why we evaluate as many vehicles as we can, so you’ll know what to expect.

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