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Ioniq is the electric nameplate family from the Hyundai brand. It was first seen with the Hyundai Ioniq, then with the Hyundai Ioniq 5, and now with other upcoming options like the Hyundai Ioniq 6. So, what does the Ioniq name mean and stand for?

Ioniq nameplate and sub-brand history

2023 Hyundai Ioniq 5 all-electric (EV) compact SUV rear badging
2023 Hyundai Ioniq 5 rear badging | Hyundai Motor America

According to Hyundai Motor Group, the Ioniq nameplate started with a project predicting future mobility and lifestyle change while implementing freedom of movement. This saw the production of Hyundai’s first electrified sedan in 2016, the Hyundai Ioniq, which came in three variations, i.e., an EV, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid.

However, in 2020, the Ioniq nameplate was reborn as an EV-dedicated brand. This was around the same time the Hyundai Motor Group introduced the Electric–Global Modular Platform for EVs, allowing for fast charging and extensive driving range.

Shortly after, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 was introduced to the market as Hyundai’s first fully electric model and showing glimpses of what would be the design language for the brand going forward. The car is based on the concept EV 45, which the brand unveiled at the 2019 International Motor Show in Frankfurt.

What the Ioniq name stands for

According to Hyundai, the Ioniq term is a faux fusion of the words “ion” and “unique.”

With the word “ion” referring to electrically charged atoms, it’s easy to see why it would be included in the name of an all-electric brand. Also, the term unique seems to describe the lineup pretty well, especially with the futuristic exterior design language and interior spaces meant to support daily living.

The current state of the Hyundai Ioniq brand of vehicles

As one of the electrified models not based on the E-GMP platform, the Hyundai Ioniq was discontinued after the 2022 model year. However, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 remains a massive part of the Ioniq brand as one of the best, most awarded vehicles of the 2022 model year.

The EV got three awards at the World Car Awards, was named the U.K. car of the year, and was listed among the best cars of 2021 and 2022, among other accolades. It’s also an IIHS top safety pick+ model, indicating it’s one of the safest EVs on the road.

The 2023 Ioniq 5 has already been named MotorTrend‘s SUV of the year with a $41,450 starting price. The base SE Standard Range trim is capable of 168 hp and offers 220 miles of range, while other trims with an RWD system offer 225 hp, 258 lb-ft of torque, and an improved 303 miles of range.

AWD is also available in all but the base trim, with the system capable of 320 hp and 446 lb-ft of torque. Additionally, according to TopGear, a Hyundai Ioniq 5 N is set to join the list of options soon.

Other nameplates under the Ioniq brand include the upcoming Hyundai Ioniq 6 and Hyundai Ioniq 7. The Ioniq 6 is set to be introduced in 2023 and is based on the Prophecy 2020 concept. As such, it’s a streamlined car with a flowing silhouette and excellent aerodynamics.

According to Consumer Reports, it’s based on the same E-GMP platform as the Ioniq 5 but is 8 inches longer, allowing for more legroom. The cabin will also feature a similar interior design to the Ioniq 5, with dual 12-inch screens and physical buttons on the dashboard.

Powertrain options will be similar to what you get with its SUV predecessor, with the car capable of 0-60 mph in under 5 seconds. However, we’ll have to wait a bit longer for the exact acceleration figures.

As for the Ioniq 7, it’s based on the 2021 Seven concept, which showed a bold, streamlined design despite looking boxy from afar. According to HotCars, the large electric SUV should hit the market sometime in 2024.

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