2018 Hyundai Kona

Research, photos, specs, and expertise
7 photos

Hyundai Kona highlights

Customer rating

RepairPal reliability rating

(data not available)


  • Lots of standard equipment and a strong warranty offering
  • Enjoyable to drive


  • Base engine is underwhelming
  • Dual-clutch automatic transmission can be slow to react

Mileage (EPA estimate)

25 city, 29 highway, 27 combined

Pricing for current inventory

(no current inventory)

7 photos

Fun meets functional in a small package

With the popularity of SUVs, it's little wonder Hyundai added the Kona subcompact crossover to its model range for 2018. The Kona, like other Hyundais, offers plenty of features and a generous warranty at an appealing price point. The Kona also has a daring design that stands out among its relatively traditional competitors. The four trim levels follow Hyundai's typical model lines. The SE is the entry point, followed by the SEL, Limited, and range-topping Ultimate.

The SE and SEL are powered by a 147-hp four-cylinder 2.0-liter engine that drives the front wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission. The Limited and Ultimate gain a 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline engine with 175 hp and use a dual-clutch automatic transmission with seven gears. All-wheel drive is offered on all trim levels, and it's worthwhile not just for the extra traction but also because it brings a more sophisticated rear suspension that improves both handling and ride comfort. Every Kona comes well equipped, and even the entry SE has Apple CarPlay®/Android Auto™, a backup camera, a 7-inch touchscreen, alloy wheels, and remote keyless entry. The SEL gains larger 17-inch alloy wheels, heated front seats, and additional driver aids in the form of blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. The Limited adds leather, while the Ultimate comes fully loaded: Its highlights include a larger 8-inch touchscreen, a premium Infinity audio system, and wireless charging for your smartphone. A good all-rounder among subcompact crossover SUVs, the Kona is well worth your consideration.

All Hyundai Kona years

2018 Hyundai Kona trims

Curious how Hyundai Kona trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities
  • SE: Includes Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, a seven-inch touchscreen, power doors and locks, cruise control, a 60/40 split-folding rear seat, and more.

  • SEL: Adds blind-spot warning with cross-traffic alert, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and more.

  • SEL Tech Package: Adds a power sunroof, power-adjustable driver's seat, and a suite of driver aids.

  • Limited: Adds a turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder engine, LED headlights, leather seating, automatic climate control, auto-dimming mirror, and more.

  • Ultimate: Adds a full-color head-up display, wireless charging, rain-sensing wipers, an eight-speaker Infinity sound system, an eight-inch touchscreen, navigation, and more.

Hyundai Kona photos

5 reasons to buy the 2018 Hyundai Kona

1. Flexible interior space

2018 Hyundai Kona: Cargo | CarMax

Tackling the unexpected requires a vehicle that can adapt to your storage needs, and the 2018 Hyundai Kona is ideal for this purpose. With 19.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second-row seats, you can easily handle a trip to the grocery store or a weekend away. Folding the rear seats down gives you 45.8 cubic feet of space, while 60/40 split folding lets you keep some rear seating while improving storage volume.

2. Peppy engines that go the distance

2018 Hyundai Kona: Engine | CarMax

Powering the 2018 Hyundai Kona is a pair of engine options. All models are equipped as standard with a 147-hp 2.0L four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission. With the 2.0L and FWD, the 2018 Hyundai Kona gets an impressive EPA-estimated 27 mpg city and 33 mpg highway.

The optional 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder engine pumps out 175 hp. A FWD 2018 Hyundai Kona equipped with the 1.6L engine gets an EPA-estimated 28 mpg city and 32 mpg highway.

3. Connectivity and technology features

2018 Hyundai Kona: Interior | CarMax

A modern car for modern drivers, the 2018 Hyundai Kona is equipped with in-demand tech right from the base model. All 2018 Hyundai Konas include Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, plus an intuitive infotainment system. Upgrade to the SEL trim for rear cross-traffic alert and satellite radio. Or, you can jump up to the 2018 Hyundai Kona Limited trim for wireless charging and a suite of driver aids.

4. Luxury touches

2018 Hyundai Kona: Dashboard | CarMax

There are quite a few high-end features in the trim-topping 2018 Hyundai Kona Ultimate. Soft, comfortable heated and cooled leather seats, a full-color head-up display, and wireless phone charging are standard features on this trim. Do you love music? Ultimate models also feature an impressive eight-speaker Infinity® sound system with Clari-Fi technology. You'll feel like you have front seats at your favorite concert in every ride.

5. Impressive performance

2018 Hyundai Kona: Exterior Rear View | CarMax

With the optional 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder engine, you'll also get a snappy seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT). With 175 hp, plenty of low-end torque, and the quick-shifting DCT, the 2018 Kona has impressive driving dynamics around town. When equipped with AWD, the Kona puts the power to the wheels with the most grip. This technology helps improve traction in poor weather conditions, giving you more confidence behind the wheel.

Similar vehicles

If you're interested in the 2018 Hyundai Kona, you should also check out these similar vehicles from Previous generation years.

Image of Subaru Crosstrek

The go-anywhere attitude of the 2017-2020 Subaru Crosstrek starts with standard symmetrical all-wheel drive. The Subaru AWD system uses advanced torque vectoring to get power to the wheels with the most grip, helping you get places you didn't think were accessible. A 152-hp four-cylinder engine powers all three trims. There's 20.8 cubic feet of cargo space at the rear, and the 2017-2020 Subaru Crosstrek AWD with the 2.0L engine can tow an estimated 1,500 lbs., when properly equipped.

Standard features on the 2017-2019 Subaru Crosstrek include:

  • 6.5-inch touchscreen with smartphone app integration

  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay® connectivity

  • Symmetrical AWD with multiple surface modes

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

4.3 out of 5

3 customer reviews

Hyundai Kona features and specs

Ultimate 2WD 4D Sport Utility

Standard Features

  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Android Auto
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • Cruise Control
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Head Up Display
  • Infinity Sound System
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Leather Seats
  • Navigation System
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear View Camera
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Smart Key
  • Sunroof(s)
  • Traction Control
  • Turbo Charged Engine
  • Full Roof Rack
  • Parking Sensors
  • Running Boards
  • Tow Hitch

Drive Wheels

Front Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type

Turbo Gas

Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 41.5"/R 34.6"

Head room

F 38"/R 37.8"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity




2018 Hyundai Kona FAQ

More about the 2018 Hyundai Kona

Color options

2018 Hyundai Kona: Color options | CarMax

Exterior colors:

  • Chalk White

  • Lime Twist

  • Pulse Red

  • Sonic Silver

  • Surf Blue

  • Thunder Gray

  • Ultra Black

Interior colors:

  • Black

  • Gray

Interior details

Bigger than meets the eye, the 2018 Hyundai Kona has 94.1 cubic feet of passenger volume—plenty for up to five passengers. In addition, the 19.2 cubic feet of cargo space can carry whatever you need for a road trip. Inside, the cloth seating (leather seating on Limited and Ultimate trims) is comfortable, even on long trips. Finally, a 60/40 split-folding rear seat gives you the flexibility of multiple cargo configurations.

Child seat details

There are two sets of upper and lower LATCH seat anchors in the rear seats of the 2018 Hyundai Kona. In addition, a third upper anchor can be used in the middle position alongside the seat belt. The tether anchors are easy to find in all three seats, while the lower anchors need a bit of a push to get deep enough. However, the 2018 Hyundai Kona isn't wide enough for three child seats side by side, limiting you to two car seats. But the height of the seats and good rear door openings make child seat installation straightforward.


While the base-model 2.0L four-cylinder engine gets 147 hp, the 2018 Hyundai Kona really comes alive with the turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder engine (Limited and Ulitmate trims). The 2018 Hyundai Kona Limited AWD can get to 60 mph from zero in just 6.6 seconds (according to the manufacturer, when new). The 1.6L turbocharged engine is paired with a seven-speed DCT, which can switch between gears faster than a typical automatic transmission. Even with all that performance, the 2018 Hyundai Kona AWD with the 1.6L engine still gets an EPA-estimated 27 mpg combined.

Year comparison

2018-2020 Hyundai Kona (First Generation)

The Hyundai Kona was revealed in 2017 and began production in 2018 as a compact SUV. It featured two four-cylinder engine options, four trims, and a selection of popular tech features at launch. An all-electric version was added to the lineup for the 2019 model year, featuring an EPA-estimated 258 mile range on a full charge.

Standard equipment includes popular streaming services like Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity.

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