STATUS: Updated electric power system for 2020 - This hatchback is uniquely designed to compete with a variety of gasoline-electric hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery-electric vehicles. Not all at once, of course, but by allowing buyers to select from any one of the three propulsion systems in a single, roomy four-door car. The hybrid model uses a 104-horsepower 1.6-liter four-cylinder in combination with a 43-horsepower electric motor for a total system output of 139 horses. For those who prefer more electrical energy, the plug-in version uses the same gas engine, but it gets a 60-horsepower electric motor and a more robust battery pack. It can run for up to 25 miles solely on battery power. The Ionic Electric (available in select U.S. states only) has a 118-horsepower motor. The battery is slated for an upgrade to extend the range beyond the current 124 miles, although the new number is not yet known. By using a DC fast charger, battery capacity can be topped up to 80 percent from empty in about 25 minutes (4.5 hours with a 240-volt Level II home charger).
Base price (incl. destination): $23,300; $26,300 (plug-in); $31,250 (Electric)
Type: Four-door hatchback
Engines (h.p.): 1.6-liter I-4 with electric motor (139, combined); EV model (118)
Transmissions: Six-speed automated manual; single-speed (EV)
Base mpg (city/highway/combined): 57/59/58 (base hybrid)
Base weight (lb.): 3,000