Hyundai is set to become the latest brand joining the burgeoning small SUV sector – and the upcoming Kona has been spotted completely undisguised while shooting an ad in Lisbon, Portugal. The slender upper lights might make you think of a Jeep Cherokee or a Citroen C4 Cactus, but overall the design is original and as quirky as they get.
It will go up against the equally polarising Nissan Juke and other more conventionally designed subcompact crossovers in a hugely competitive segment. The Kona will largely be based on the i20 supermini, but with engines sourced from the larger i30. Hyundai’s designers have done a good job at hiding the model’s roots since there aren’t any similarities between the Kona and the i20, although one could say the taillights look somewhat familiar.
In typical small SUV fashion, the Kona gets an increased ground clearance and plastic body cladding around the wheelarches and on the lower areas of both bumpers. With this being a car used for promotional purposes, it’s safe to say we’re looking at a range-topping version with all the bells and whistles. The two-tone paint with a predominantly orange body contrasted by a black glossy roof is another sign this is an upper-spec model.
If you’re finding the Kona’s design too flamboyant, Kia’s equivalent version reportedly called 'Stonic' will have a more down-to-earth appearance, at least judging by recent spy shots.
Hyundai might host the public debut of the Kona in September at the Frankfurt Motor Show, but an online reveal is expected to occur in the coming months, if not weeks.
Special thanks go to Gabriel Dias for allowing us to use the top image!