Worst Hyundai Kona Years To Avoid (3 Key Problems)

The Hyundai Kona is relatively new; it is practically the newest automobile line from Hyundai for now. Kona is built as a subcompact crossover, with pretty many similarities with the Kia Sportage. If you’re looking to get a modernized SUV from Hyundai, the Kona SUV/CUV is a really great consideration.

But before jumping to buy a Hyundai Kona, it is important you understand the good and bad model years. Yes, the SUV is still very new with just a few model years in the market, but notwithstanding, there are still some Hyundai Kona years to avoid, which we’ll be discussing below

The major reason to avoid the indicated years of Hyundai Kona is that they’re “Problematic,” but there are plenty other things you need to know about this car!

Hyundai Kona Overview

The Hyundai Kona is a subcompact crossover SUV from the South Korean automaker Hyundai. It is called several names in different countries: Kona EV (the hybrid version), Kauai (Portugal), Encino (China). The Hyundai Kona was unveiled in 2017 and launched in 2018.

Hyundai Kona stands between the Hyundai Venue, Bayon, and Tucson SUVs. According to Hyundai, the name “Kona” reflects the lifestyle of modern customers, and as such, the SUV is designed to flaunt a “progressive design” that matches its name/purpose.

The Hyundai Kona is a desirable ride equipped with the latest in-car features and techs every modern driver would love from the outside to the inside. More so, the Hyundai Kona has multiple engine/transmission options, as well as special editions.

See Also: Worst Hyundai Elantra Years To Avoid

Worst Hyundai Kona Years To Avoid and Why

For now, there are just four model years of the Hyundai Kona; they are yet new, but the owners are quite a few. However, the Kona models have received a few complaints from its owners, and judging from the reports, the 2018 Hyundai Kona year is the worst one to buy.

Well, the 2018 Kona was the first ever model to be released; so it’s safe to assume that the components used in the car haven’t been perfected. Below are the common problems you may experience with the 2018 Hyundai Kona.

Common Problems With Hyundai Kona

These problems were identified by people who owned/drove the Hyundai Kona SUV, particularly the 2018 model.

1. Electrical Faults

Some owners of the 2018 Hyundai Kona allege that the blind collision warning system shuts down automatically on its own.

Also, some drivers report that the Bluelink technologies malfunctions intermittently. These problems typically happen at low mileage, and the average repair cost is $300.

2. Engine Problems

The engine problems reported for the 2018 Hyundai Kona include complete engine failure, the car accelerating on its own, check engine light staying on, and stalling when starting.

Again, these problems reportedly occur at low mileage, costing an average of $1,500 to fix.

3. Exterior and Interior Accessories Failure

Some 2018 Hyundai Kona owners allege that the SUV typically develops accessories faults after hitting 10,000 – 20,000 miles.

Reported problems include radio system malfunctioning, speedometer malfunctioning, windshield wiper failure, and incorrect gauge readings. To fix these problems cost an average of $200.

What is the Best Hyundai Kona Year To Buy?

The 2019 and 2020 Hyundai Konas hold up much better than the 2018 models. Apparently, they are the best model years of the SUV; notwithstanding, the 2021 Hyundai Kona is quite a decent ride that checks all the boxes, including long-lasting dependability.

If you’re going for a used Hyundai Kona, it is best to skip the first model (the 2018 Hyundai Kona) and check out the newer models available to you. However, that does not mean that the 2018 Hyundai Kona is “trash,” it simply doesn’t hold up well – as expected.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Hyundai Kona a good car?

From all indications, the Hyundai Kona is a decent crossover SUV, capable of going off-road, and available with cutting-edge automobile features and technologies. The Hyundai Kona is not only a desirable ride; it is reliable and extremely comfortable to drive.

What problems does Hyundai Kona have?

The most common problem with Hyundai Kona is engine stalling – this was reported by quite a reasonable number of people who owned the Hyundai Kona, particularly the 2018 and 2019 models. Apparently, the Hyundai Kona can develop other problems, especially if you don’t keep up with the maintenance schedules.

How long does Hyundai Kona last?

Hyundai Kona can go over 200,000 miles if maintained properly. It can also last up to 15 years before requiring major repairs if carefully taken care of. The Hyundai Kona is really a tough one, and it looks pretty rugged for all kinds of adventure or tours.

See Also: Worst Dodge RAM 1500 Years to Avoid


Summarily, the Hyundai Kona year to avoid is just the first model year – the 2018 Hyundai Kona. This particular model year is synonymous with a faulty engine and other problems that occur at low mileage.

You’d get a much better deal/value buying a used 2020 Hyundai Kona than a 2018 model.

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