Hyundai’s latest 10.25-inch infotainment system is currently being rolled out across a number of new and updated models. We had the chance to get familiar with it in the 2020 Hyundai Ioniq Electric.
Whether you knew this Hyundai was an electric vehicle or not, once you open the drivers door, you’ll know.
The electric Ioniq has a traditional interior with plenty of technology added. You won’t find a typical gear lever – it’s been replaced by buttons – and the cluster of instruments has been replaced by a 7.0-inch display.
This isn’t an ordinary Hyundai, but the infotainment system might just be the new norm.
Hyundai has added a 10.25-inch touch display to the central infotainment system. It’s a vibrant and impressive unit with excellent detail.
Being a wide display, Hyundai has split it into three sections which can be customised, however the navigation, music/entertainment controls, and vehicle statistics are the standard setup.
Long swipes will move you to other menu options such as Driving Info, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, and viewing the manual. For those interested the manual isn’t viewable on the display, it shows you a QR code to open it on your phone.
While you drive the Ioniq you’ll notice the third panel of vehicle statistics (charge remaining, for example) also dynamically shows the nearest charging station.
This continues to update as you travel, and with a single tap you can be receiving guidance to that station. For people concerned about range anxiety, it’s a real treat. The same applies for when you have a destination in the navigation – the unit can suggest charging points along the way, and adjust your route accordingly.
These are things you won’t find when you use Google Maps or Apple Maps.
The Ioniq has two USB ports, one beneath the HVAC controls between two 12V sockets, and the other in the centre console. The front USB port is the only one which will work for Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, while the other will charge your smartphone.
This was a bit of a surprise as hiding your phone in the centre console is safer – it’s out of sight, out of mind. Hyundai also has a Qi wireless charger that acts as an excellent phone holder.
We could easily fit the iPhone 11 and a Samsung Galaxy Flip, however some wider models may struggle.
The wireless charging would be more useful if Apple CarPlay worked wirelessly in the Ioniq. That way you could wirelessly charge your phone and use CarPlay, rather than needing to fiddle with a wire. Yes, we know the USB port will charge you up anyway…
Using Apple CarPlay on the large display is a real treat. Given it’s much wider than normal, you receive an extra column of icons, and the mapping looks so much better as well.
The same can’t be said for Android Auto, which doesn’t make the most of the display, instead dropping a large logo on the right hand side. This is likely an American decision, as the logo for right-hand drive vehicles would make more sense on the left.
Nevertheless, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay operated really well and the steering wheel controls for music playback worked as expected.
With a vehicle that operates so silently, the audio experience is almost like using headphones with noise cancelling.
The speakers don’t need to work so hard to drown out the engine, and its main battle is road noise.
At low volumes the audio was enjoyable, and for some road trip classics that need to be heard loud we were impressed at what Hyundai produced from the 8 speaker system.
Hyundai has added AutoLink Premium to this vehicle, and many others in its range.
AutoLink Premium is an app which works on Android and iOS allowing you to start your vehicle, turn on the air conditioning, lock/unlock, and sound the horn remotely. You can look at your vehicle status, look at details of your last trip and set up a geo-fence, all excellent for when your children borrow the car and you want to see if they’re doing the right thing.
Simply having the ability to control the climate and de-mister while sitting inside the house will have you singing praises in winter. If only it allowed control of the heated seats and steering wheel from the app, too.
The last area to look at is the controls in the centre bay. The traditional gear lever has been replaced with four buttons laid out like the sign of the cross, with neutral playing in the middle of reverse and drive.
Behind this is a palm rest and seven important buttons. Here you’ll find heated/cooled seat controls for the driver and front passenger, heated steering wheel controls, a drive mode selector, and rear camera control.
Cooling seats should be permanently on when leather upholstery is involved, and we were glad to see it. Backseat passengers will be glad to enjoy air-conditioning vents, but there are no 12V or USB sockets to be found.
From a technology point of view the Hyundai Ioniq is fully loaded. You’ll spend plenty of time becoming familiar with the elements explained above, and it’s important you do that.
It would be easy to own this car and not even be aware of AutoLink, as there is no mention of it within the infotainment system, only in the manual.
To truly get to the most out of any vehicle you own is to dive in – do more than drive from A to B, become acquainted and get to know one another. It will be more than worth it.
For Hyundai to load the Ioniq with this level of sophistication and features below $60,000 is a real treat. You can see the change coming at Hyundai, and the traditional look and feel slowly fading away.
That 10.25-inch display is the first sign.