We rarely travel for work nowadays. We don’t find the time, and frankly, we prefer to learn about whatever new products in ways that don’t require traveling.

A few weeks ago, however, we made an exception. We were invited by Hyundai to discover the new IONIQ Electric in the city of Amsterdam, and to meet and talk to Hyundai staff and developers about the field of electric cars and discuss the quest of making it the future standard.

Hyundai is, we learned, the brand with the broadest range of electrified powertrains and has sold 600,000 electrified vehicles globally. More progressive steps are to follow, and by the end of 2010 over 75% of Hyundai’s line-up will be electrified.

The car we tested, the new Hyundai IONIQ Electric, will be offered to European customers–we learned that Sweden and Norway are among the countries with the most interest in electric cars.

So, what are the interesting specs of the new IONIQ Electric? Well, it has increased battery capacity, it drives 311 km in electric mode without charging, and the battery charges 80 percent in only 54 minutes. It also has a refreshed design and new connectivity features. Hyundai Bluelink is a connected car system allowing for you to, for example, lock and unlock the doors remotely and adjust the air conditioning before you leave your house. You can also use the Bluelink smartphone app to navigate to a specific address.
There are so many more tech specs! One of our favorites? You can connect two phones at the same time to listen to each other’s music! And there’s a driver assistance system that monitors the environment around the vehicle. In Amsterdam, a featured that turned out to be useful was the Front Collision Warning and Avoidance Assist with Pedestrian Detection and new Cyclist Detection ability, given it was pretty crowded on the streets in the city centre.

Speaking about Amsterdam, it was a suitable city to test the new IONIQ, as the city is working consistently to improve its sustainability agenda. There are concrete plans to improve air quality in the city through encouraging the use of electric transport, by stimulating smart distribution processes and extending low emission zones to include more types of vehicles. The city is full of electric boats, bikes, buses and scooters–and of course, cars. The charging stations are plentiful, and the city encourages car-sharing services. Driving around in the city centre made us realize the need for these initiatives, as it’s tight and crowded.

We also had time to go outside the city centre and visit the picturesque countryside. It felt like a safe ride–and we can’t wait for a future where all car rides are electric.

This post in published in collaboration with Hyundai. Visit Hyundai here and follow here. And hey – you can test drive the IONIQ Electric and other Huyndai electric cars already in november! 

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