The 2017 Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid has been holding the title of the most energy-efficient vehicle, right after the BMW i3 back in 2104, but it looks like that won’t be for long.
It’s time for them to step aside to make way for the 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric. This vehicle impresses with its EPA-rated range of 124-miles on top of its 136 MPGe combined. This rating is way higher than the Prius Prime’s 133 MPGe on its electric mode.
Ahn Byung-ki, director of Hyundai’s eco vehicle performance, said some time back that the company doesn’t see the need to upgrade the Ioniq’s 124-mile range for now but it just may be extended in the near future.
At a media event at Hyundai’s Michigan technical center, Ahn said that a 200-mile version of the Ioniq Electric may be possible by 2018. However, he had failed to mention how Hyundai would be extending the range and we assume just adding a bigger battery unit will not do the trick for this vehicle.
This is mainly because Hyundai commonly positions its battery under the back seat, right between the rear wheels. It does not seem all that practical for this model as it leaves very little space but it may work if the battery unit is protracted into the central tunnel.
Expect to see the Hyundai Ioniq Electric and the Ioniq Hybrid model arriving to dealerships near you by the end of this year.