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Hyundai is no stranger to winning accolades, so it’s no surprise the Korean automaker recently achieved yet another honor. However, instead of one of its better-known models scoring the win, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 earned a Car of the Year award. Here’s a look at the 2021 Ioniq 5 and why it won this distinction.

Hyundai’s recent changes to its lineup

Two 2021 Hyundai Ioniq 5 crossover SUVs parked in front of a body of water and mountains
2021 Hyundai Ioniq 5 | Hyundai Motor Company

The world is changing in many ways, and automakers are changing with it. As such, manufacturers, including Hyundai, have plans for an electric future. Currently, the Korean carmaker’s EV plans aren’t exactly the most ambitious — it wants to go fully electric by 2040. Regardless, the company will make some big and bold moves in the EV segment. 

Hyundai says it plans to have 23 EVs in its lineup by 2025, with 11 of those models battery-powered EVs. The first of many of those EVs has already arrived. That’s because the Ioniq sub-brand is supposed to be EV-only, and the Ioniq 5 is available for purchase. More Ioniq cars are coming, but the Ioniq 5 is a pretty good electric crossover SUV. 

Why the Hyundai Ioniq 5 won this Car of the Year award

According to Hyundai, the Ioniq 5 won Car of the Year from the Auto Express New Car Awards 2021. Ultimately, the Ioniq 5 won the prize for many reasons. One of the main reasons is because of the Ioniq 5’s styling. Although styling is subjective, this EV looks advanced.

Not only that, but the judges also liked the fact that Hyundai is a “technology leader” in the EV segment, the automaker says. The Ioniq 5 also won because of its impressive quality and driving ability. Its specs back up those reasons. For example, it’s a relatively fast car, both in terms of speed and charging capabilities.

It can recharge from 10% to 80% in only 18 minutes, and it can go from 0 to 60 mph in about 5.2 seconds. Not only that, but it also provides just under 300 miles of range and large display screens. Its 12-inch digital gauge cluster display sits right next to a 12-inch horizontal touchscreen.

According to Hyundai, the Ioniq 5 also won in the Mid-Size Company Car, Premium Electric Car, and Design categories.

Other awards and accolades the automaker won


The Hyundai Kona Electric Just Killed the Hyundai Ioniq

Though the Ioniq 5 was the star of the Auto Express New Car Awards 2021, Hyundai won a few other awards. The Tucson led the Mid-Size SUV category, while the i20N won in the Hot Hatchback category. American Hyundai fans may know precisely why the Tucson won that accolade already, but the i20N is a different story. That’s because, unlike the Tucson or the Ioniq 5, the i20N is not available in America.

Regardless, the Ioniq 5 shows that Hyundai can make a good EV. However, at a sticker price of $45,000, it’s not exactly for every budget. But the automaker is already looking to produce some cheaper EVs.

That’s why the 2022 Hyundai Kona Electric will start at about $34,000. However, that price will bring fewer features and inferior specs than the Ioniq 5. For example, the Kona Electric gets only about 258 miles of range.