THERE is a lot of noise generated about SUVs at the moment but the Hyundai Kona does not shout about its abilities, it just delivers them.
This fuss-free formula is favoured by those who need the space and equipment of a quality SUV which decides when you can get away with front wheel drive or would benefit from all-wheel-drive.
Best of all it does not bring you out in a sweat on the road or reading your bank statement because it is comparatively well priced for what it is and does.
The Hyundai Kona range includes no less than three electric models in its 18-strong line up with six trim levels from £16,450 to £38,645.
Traditional petrol and diesel engines span 115ps to 177ps with manual or automatic transmissions depending on power, and two-wheel-drive (2WD) or four-wheel-drive (4WD).
Our higher trimmed and powered petrol 4WD comes with a new seven-speed multi-model dual-clutch automatic transmission with big emissions and fuel savings over a conventional six-speed automatic and it's a very good combination.
The engine is a quick starter, pulls well and the new automatic gearbox is particularly smooth and quiet going up or down the ratios and can be manually moved as well if desired in some situations. A diff-lock and drive mode complete the package for any situation you're likely to encounter.
The normal, eco or sport responses are immediately apparent if you select them and it really pays to use the system to stretch out fuel or condense overtaking time. We saw over 40mpg at times but it did settle to an overall figure in the mid-30s, which did slightly disappoint.
The revised steering imparts greater feel than before and it gives the Kona a good turning circle without becoming twitchy or suffering from kickback so it handles better through sweeping bends or city streets.
I found the brakes underfoot were progressive and powerful, the parking brake was also strong on our usual test slope.
Secondary controls on stalks and the wheel-spokes were immediately to hand, worked well and clearly marked, the same being true of the simple instrument cluster infront of the driver and housing the multifunctional settings info while a central console display carried the infotainment and ancillary features.
Heating and ventilation was simple and effective, warming the cabin throughout with good directional control, output and volume, and there were powered windows backing up.
I found the oddments room restricted by the shape and size of compartments, cubbies and pockets but the normal bootspace was well shaped and easy to load, quickly almost tripling in capacity with the offset split back seats folding out of the way.
Access for driver and passengers was unobstructed and the room inside was good with a fair amount of adjustment range on the front seats.
They were comfortable seats wrapping around the back and bottom with a pleasant-shaped backrest and head support.
Visibility was good to front and sides, slightly more restricted over the shoulder and you really needed to use the camera when reversing as some items behind were not visible from the front.
Noise levels were low to modest depending on how hard you pressed on and the surface beneath the tyres, the most noticeable being the road rumbles on bad pieces of tarmac.