I’ve written once or twice about this vehicle. It came to me by chance, a blog post online about “the cheapest EV lease ever” and a few days later, I was driving home from New York State with a lease under $100 for a fully electronic vehicle. 10K miles a year, 140 miles of range in ideal conditions (no heat/ac or electronics on and temps above 50F) and honestly, terrible driving experience. I’ll never own a Hyundai, that’s for sure. It’s a shit-box in every sense of the word BUT we have solar panels and we over-produce so we have an excess of solar 8 months out of the year so this car was going to be a vehicle we would use to offset 30,000 miles of our vehicles and in total spend about 3,000 in payments to Hyundai over 3 years before registration & insurance which…was free the first year when Hyundai sent a blank check to my town office to cover the full registration cost then I got another check for a few hundred bucks from them later for some reason that I applied to insurance.

Total running cost will be roughly $115 a month when you keep in mind a few things, First my solar panels are covering the 28 kilowatt hour battery and the maintenance is included by Hyundai for the lease. I’m actually at the nearest dealer right now in Nashua with an empty battery getting the 12 month inspection done.

Oh yeah..dead battery. I rolled in here with 6 miles of range left. That’s the kicker of this car. The mileage still sucks. It’s a car I wouldn’t recommend to anyone except your 85 year old grandmother who goes to the grocery store once a week and needs a car that will be her last car needing nothing but tires and maybe a brake job in the 10-15 years of ownership dutifully taking her to and from the salon, doctor and grocery store and plugging in to her wall outlet. The degradation of the battery won’t impact her as she never goes 25 miles from home. It’s excellent for her.

I’ve put 10,600 miles on this car now and while the drive to the nearest Hyundai Dealer was nerve-wracking seeing the range dip lower and lower while I sat in the car fully bundled up in a jacket, gloves and hat with the heat off in 33 degree weather in the snow (yeah, it snowed today in New Hampshire), hoping the car didn’t die before I arrived. The display showed 125 miles of range at the current temp this morning and it was 6 miles remaining after 94 miles of driving. Interstate driving does impact the range.

This car has been fantastic for around town usage. Leave the house and drive it to run some errands, get home with 70 miles of range and plug it in to my wall plug and it’s fully charged the next day. There is a fast charger in northern Vermont we use to recharge when going to our favorite brewery and there’s a fast charger at Whole Foods about 90 miles from the house so we can get 100 miles from home, re-charge and come home again only if we keep the climate control off.

The car is floaty, has too much torque for the super skinny tires so they squeal and the seats are super uncomfortable with zero lumbar support or any bolstering. The dog fits in the back which is good and that’s his space so I like that it’s a mildly tapered hatchback that fits him.

What would make this car a better buy worth purchasing? 300 miles of range, all wheel drive, nicer seats, a heat pump (which saves EV range) instead of conventional heater core element and finally, a little bit better handling. This is a 35,000 USD car so it all makes sense why they were leasing these for so cheap.

The good thing in my case is that my buyout amount for a 35,000 vehicle is only $11,500 USD at the end of the 3 year, $3,000 lease so it’s absolutely a no-brainer. Like seriously, I’ll have put $32K into it, I can buy it for under $12 and sell it for $20 and make a lot of money. I truly don’t understand why this lease deal existed but I’m glad it did.

Would I consider keeping the Ioniq after buying it for so cheap? Probably not. Long term, I think the plan is, Sell the $500 Ford Escape I bought 2 years ago for $4,000, then sell the Ioniq for $20K and pocket that money and then Heather’s Golf Sportwagen SEL which is more rare than ever both in trim and model now that VW killed it will be paid off in 12 months so she’ll sell her’s for $15K since she’s no longer driving it. I’ll keep the Golf R which is still below 50,000 miles after 5 years of ownership and worth $30K still but I’m going to keep it for another 5-10 years because this car will continue appreciating as the last non-hybrid Golf R so we’ll then only have 1 car in the family from 4 and I’ll be buying whatever electric vehicle is out there to replace those 3 vehicles and Heather will have to either keep saving for a while for whatever she wants next or she can use the EV or Golf R since when it’s above 30F, I’m on the motorcycle anyway :P

I think 4 cars has been nice BUT the problem with that is the insurance & registrations really add up. It’s about $1800 a year in registrations for 4 cars and 4 motorcycles and about $2000 a year in insurance. That’s money just going down the drain so if we can pocket 25 grand by selling a few vehicles and going back to a 2 car setup with one car that’s fully paid off, we’ll be able to put more money away.

10K miles in though the Ioniq EV has been nice to have. The price truly can’t be beat. I have it for 2 more years since Hyundai does not allow early turn-in. They do charge $600 at the end of the lease for turn-in but not if you buy it which is my plan for it.