- Nov 26, 2007
- Atomic toaster
So, uh … welcome to the future?
Yes, it’s me! With a factory new car! One that’s even (accidentally) specced to my taste.
How can it be?
Well, as I outlined in the Volvo thread, I need a good, reliable car to get to work. Work is almost 50 miles from where I live. Sometimes I work from home, but I’ve agreed to visit the office three times a week. That’s a lot of driving, and diesel costs a lot more now than it did a year ago. The Volvo is great, very reliable and comfortable, but there are limits to its fuel economy. Especially without block heater, especially with cold starts. I love driving it, but it’s also done 300,000 km by now and … I’d like not to have to pay for repairs. The solution: a private short-term lease from Autovernkouppal.
Rather than buy Yet Another Car that would probably have to be crappier than the Volvo just to use less fuel, I clicked through a webform that ended up with me agreeing to pay the Hyundai importer a set sum of money every month, and in return I get to rack up miles in this thing. No emotion, only compensation. In the end it’s only about how much I have to pay to reliably get to work, and I figured I’d rather pay for the use of a brand new car than pay oil companies to get to use my beater car. It’s not 1:1, but fuel costs and road tax (for being a diesel with full seating) are not insignificant compared to lease costs,home charging and EV road tax. Insurance is about the same for both. The lease price also included winter tires. I get to do 25k a year in this for an extra 50e a month. I think geeman had a similar setup with a white Twingo, come to think of it.
Anyway, the car! It’s a MY2021 Hyundai Ioniq with the full-HD electric drivetrain. 38kWh battery pack in these facelift cars, yet it only does 1-phase charging. I can charge at home from The Red Socket though, so the car juices up with 16A and 3,4kW according to its dashboard display. Eventual full charge is good for 311km, which means 230 and change in wintertime. I should be able to get to work and back, then, even with heating on. And I can heat the steering wheel, which is a huge bonus.
The car has a lot of gadgets I’ve never had before, like Carplay, wireless phone charging, keyless go, ACC, and I actually think I have use for them. Conversely, this has probably less than half of the Volvo’s soundproofing and it also doesn’t do the same laid-back, aloof “going sort of straight forever” kind of highway driving that you get with a Swedish car that looks like a work boot. But you get what you pay for, and I think this has a chance of being really good at being an EV. The interior doesn’t throw me off, nothing about the car looks gimmicky, and it is very energy efficient. Of course in various ways it's more 2015 than some other EVs you get by now, but that suits me.
And still, even if it’s not mine-mine, it feels good. In the speccing form I could choose between white and “Amazon Grey”, so I obviously chose the grey. Other colours were not available for the simplified private lease deal, just these two. And I was pleasantly surprised that the grey colour’s in fact greenish! In some lighting it’s not that far from a kind of dark green. Inside it has grey cloth that’s just the sort that’s to my taste. Sadly, no fake wood anywhere. Handles and trim are satin finish metal, which is certainly OK too. Wheels are some aero jobs that look acceptable, but the best thing is that they’re only 16-inch and have 60 profile tires. Comfort!
I’ll probably drive this for a year or so and then see what the importer has on offer. I can drive this for five years straight with an option to buy, but I can also return this after 12 months. The other option is that if I turn out to really like Ioniqs, I could get a used one for half the price of a new one, so consider this a test run of sorts. I don’t think I’ll make a separate thread for any other lease adventure car, but I guess this one is special enough to merit posting.
I’ve always wanted to have a new car, one that has zero wear and perfect condition components everywhere inside it. This is the first occasion when I’ve been able to afford to drive one, and even if it's strictly for commuting, it feels like a treat. I guess it’s a sign of the times that it needed to be an EV to make sense, but so it goes.