Auto Express

“Hyundai Ioniq 5 is the spiritual successor of VW Golf”


The most successful car ever? You know, the one that was bought in more volume than the combined power of the Ford Model T (16.5 million units sold), Volkswagen Beetle (21.5m) and MINI (5.5m)?

That will be Toyota Corolla, in a multitude of looks – most finished in Born To Be Mild beige paint. Since 1966, more than 50 million buyers globally have purchased one!

But a very different success that no one would have guessed is now achieved by a very different car – a relatively low-selling (for now), 100% electric car. Hyundai Ioniq 5. What we are witnessing is a stylish, affordable (in EV condition) family hatchback significantly upgraded its status from rookie lightweight contender to the respected reigning heavyweight champion of the world.

It’s no exaggeration to say that the Ioniq 5 is currently considered by people like me who have thoroughly researched and driven it (many times in my case) as the newest entry-level car on the planet.

In that sense, it is the spiritual successor to Golf – and like the Golf, the Ioniq 5 is a landmark vehicle. It’s also embarrassing Volkswagen Empire. How that? Because the most obvious and natural successor to the phenomenally successful Golf in old-fashioned petrol or diesel guise could have been and should have been an all-new Golf in all-electric guise. Except that Volkswagen complicates matters by effectively and slowly killing the legendary Golf that took half a century to build and nurture. Its replacement? Nothingness ID.3 (or bigger ID.4). I am a big fan of electric cars. But only if they are absolutely correct. And ID.3 and ID.4 do not. IMHO.

What? Hyundai, its workers and its Ioniq 5 achieved in the last 10 months is unprecedented. The series begins in early July 2021, when the title gives it a big title – coveted person Express car of the year trophy. Then at the end of last year, the car was judged by a panel of international designers, racers, marketers and the media (including myself and Steve Fowler) as the World Champion. general world of the year. And since then, a number of other organizations have lined up to pin their medals or raise their titles on the 2021/22 success story. Now, as we wrap up the Ioniq 5’s first full year as the best car on the market, the appointed jurors (again with Steve and I) were – surprised, amazed course – voted it World car of the year.

But let’s not forget that in the rapidly evolving automotive industry, the Ioniq 5 is in effect last year’s model in some respects. The 2022/2023 season will begin in just a few weeks, with the Auto Express Awards being the first of a series of major awards ceremonies.

What’s going to happen in the next 12 months or so is tantalizing. No detailed predictions from me in the early game, but something tells me Brand new Range Rover and, at the other end of the scale, Dacia Jogger maybe just cleaning – despite the fact that at least both, for the time being, rely on old-fashioned internal combustion engines. You know, the kind of engine that is still bought, used and loved by most drivers around the world.

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