Though they share the same nameplate, the Hyundai IONIQ 5 and IONIQ 6 are significantly different EVs appealing to different kinds of drivers. At the same time, there are also many parallels, especially when it comes to batteries and electrical architecture. The IONIQ 5 is a crossover SUV, while Hyundai describes the IONIQ 6 as a “streamliner.” The IONIQ 6 has the lowest current coefficient of drag among Hyundai offerings at 0.21. This comes at the cost of some interior space.
Hyundai doesn’t leave the intended use of the IONIQ 5 and the IONIQ 6 to guesswork. Randy Parker, senior VP at Hyundai America, clearly specified who each model is designed for, Green Car Reports reveals. Parker detailed how the “IONIQ 5 is aimed at young families, while Ioniq 6 is aimed at young single professionals.” He added the designers expect “exceptional exterior styling, an upscale interior, and […] the latest and greatest technology” to be key features interesting potential Ioniq 6 buyers.
IONIQ 6 vs IONIQ 5: Side by Side Comparison
|IONIQ 5||IONIQ 6|
|Date of Release||December 2021||Early 2023|
|Range||220 to 303 miles||332 to 379 miles (estimate)|
|Top Speed||115 mph||115 mph (estimate)|
|0-60||7.4 seconds to 5.2 seconds||5.1 seconds|
|Charging Speed||18 minutes||18 minutes|
|MSRP||$39,950 to $55,000||Unknown|
|Cargo Space||59.3 cubic feet||Unknown|
|Horsepower||225 to 320 horsepower||320 horsepower|
|Torque||258 ft-lbs to 446 ft-lbs||446 ft-lbs|
|Number of Seats||5||5|
IONIQ 6 vs IONIQ 5: What’s the Difference?
As a family passenger vehicle, the IONIQ 5 crossover SUV focuses on passenger space and cargo volume. The IONIQ 6 is a streamlined sedan for lone drivers, or perhaps a driver and a single passenger. As a result, it zeroes in on sport driving and luxury instead.
#1: Range and Charging
EV owners want the longest range possible for their vehicles, at least in the USA. The IONIQ 5’s range depends on the battery option, along with the drivetrain. The range is 220 miles for the basic setup: a rear-wheel drive (RWD) IONIQ 5 with a 58 kWh standard battery. With the extended range 77 kWh battery, the range jumps to 256 miles for all-wheel drive (AWD) models. RWD vehicles with the 77 kWh battery achieve 303 miles range by EPA estimates.
Things are a bit different for the IONIQ 6, which hasn’t yet been released. In a July press release, Hyundai said that the IONIQ 6 streamliner is an extremely energy-efficient EV thanks to its aerodynamics. The company claims 379 miles of range with a 77 kWh battery. This is a WLTP figure, however, using looser European guidelines.
While there’s no direct conversion to EPA estimated range, InsideEVs reports the ratio averages at 1.14:1. This would give an approximate 332-mile range for the IONIQ 6, about 9.6% better than the IONIQ 5. Both the IONIQ 5 and IONIQ 6 recharge very rapidly when a Level 3 DC fast charger is available. Hyundai builds the EVs with identical 350 kW batteries and recharging architecture.
When connected to a Level 3 charger, either vehicle requires just 18 minutes to go from a 10% to an 80% charge. ScreenRant also reports that the EVs are built for 800-volt infrastructure, but can use 400-volt without an adapter.
#2: Performance and Driving
Benefiting from the powerful torque of electric motors, even the less aerodynamic IONIQ 5 can blast from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds. However, some reviewers report even better acceleration, with times closer to 5 seconds. These metrics apply to higher-end, performance-orientated trims. On the other hand, the basic RWD, 55 kWh battery allows IONIQ 5 to dart from a standstill to 60 mph in a time closer to 7.4 seconds.
Once again, exact stats won’t be available for the IONIQ 6 until October 24th, 2022; or later, according to Hyundai. However, its promotional materials claim a 5.1 second 0-60 time for the fastest IONIQ 6 trim. This figure makes the IONIQ 6 slightly faster than the IONIQ 5; officially, at least.
The IONIQ 5 generates 225 horsepower and 258 ft-lbs of torque in its RWD configuration. With an additional electric motor and an AWD drivetrain, it produces 320 horsepower and 446 ft-lbs of torque instead. Hyundai’s stats for the IONIQ 6 give its AWD power output at a precisely identical 320 horsepower and 446 ft-lbs.
Hyundai also plans to release a new “N brand” high-performance version of each vehicle sometime in 2023. Stats for the IONIQ 5 N and the IONIQ 6 RN22e are likely to be identical once again, at 577 horsepower and 546 ft-lbs of torque. 0-60 mph, quarter-mile times, and other performance specs aren’t yet available, but will likely greatly outdo the current IONIQ 5 and 6.
#3: Cargo and Towing
Hyundai’s engineers built the IONIQ 5 as a crossover SUV with hatchback access to rear cargo space. The included space is rather modest compared to a full-size SUV, and can’t compare to a minivan. However, it may be enough for many owners. Cargo space is 27.2 cubic feet with the rear seats in place, and 59.3 cubic feet with them folded flat. The vehicle also features a front trunk, or “frunk,” where the engine would be in an ICE vehicle.
As an SUV, although a smallish one, the IONIQ 5 has some actual towing capacity. It can tow a trailer weighing up to 1,260 lbs. The IONIQ 6’s cargo space isn’t yet officially known, but it’s certain to be a lot less than the IONIQ 5. The EV will have a frunk of similar size, but also a rear trunk rather than a hatchback cargo space. It is also unlikely to have significant towing capacity or even a hitch for a trailer. The IONIQ 5 is the clear winner for cargo room and towing.
#4: Technology and Convenience
Hyundai loads both of its IONIQ models with technology to increase its appeal to potential buyers. However, the IONIQ 6 will include more bells and whistles even in its base trim than the IONIQ 5. As an EV for young professionals rather than families, Hyundai will maximize its gadgets and intriguing features.
Driver Assist Electronics
Both vehicles feature a suite of modern driver assist electronics. Hyundai outfits its EVs and other vehicles with its Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, or ADAS. These include active cruise control, which maintains proper spacing between the IONIQ and other vehicles. Lane change assistance enables drivers to use an automated system to safely change lanes by switching on the turn signal. Multiple forms of collision avoidance, both for other vehicles and for pedestrians, are built in.
The company says the IONIQ 6 will boast more advanced, next-generation versions of several systems found in the IONIQ 5, but hasn’t yet provided full details. What we do know is that high beam assist turns the high headlight beams on and off depending on the presence of oncoming vehicles. There is also a driver attention warning to keep drivers focused on the road.
Hyundai did its best to give both IONIQ EVs a swanky, enjoyable interior. Both have good sound systems with multiple speakers throughout the cabin, though the IONIQ 6 upgrades to a premium Bose audio system. In addition, Bluetooth enables streaming music, and the touchscreens and controls can be customized. The IONIQ contains additional features, like ambient internal lighting that changes color depending on the EV’s speed.
Both the IONIQ 5 and 6 feature vehicle-to-load (V2L) electrical architecture. This means Hyundai designed them to be capable of operating as a power source as well. Consequently, smartphones, laptops, and other small electronic devices can be recharged by plugging into the charging ports built into the EVs.
#5: Seating, Comfort, Driving Experience
Both vehicle models seat 5 people, though the “streamliner” roofline of the IONIQ 6 makes its rear seating row somewhat less spacious. Hyundai’s battery architecture makes a flat floor possible in both EVs, providing good legroom. What’s more, the IONIQ 5’s seats come standard with stain-resistant cloth upholstery on lower trims and leatherette on higher trims. The front seats are heated, as standard. All trim levels include 8-way power adjustment and power lumbar support for the driver’s seat only.
Hyundai engineered the IONIQ 6’s seats thinner than typical car seats while maintaining comfort and safety. Thinner seats boost legroom, especially in the back seating row where the EV’s shape might otherwise create more cramped conditions. An introductory video from Hyundai shows the driver’s seat can be reclined to turn it into a lounge. More specifics on seating features will be available in late October.
Reviewers who have had the chance to drive the IONIQ 5 report that it is comfortable and rides smoothly, even over rough surfaces. Rear visibility is somewhat limited, but will likely be superior in the IONIQ 6. In addition, the cabin is quiet and the seats are comfortable, offering good support even on long drives. The IONIQ 6 will probably offer similarly smooth driving.
The IONIQ 5’s base price is $39,950 for the lowest trim level, ranging up to $55,000 for the top trim. Optional packages naturally add more to this amount. The IONIQ 6’s price isn’t yet publicly known but is almost certain to be significantly higher. That’s because Hyundai’s inclusion of numerous premium features and extra gadgets will very likely make the IONIQ 6 considerably more expensive.
IONIQ 6 vs IONIQ 5: Pros and Cons
|IONIQ 6: Pros||IONIQ 6: Cons|
|More affordable||Not sporty|
|Good cargo space||Somewhat limited rear visibility|
|Roomy rear seat||Limited range in some trims|
|Smooth, comfortable ride|
|Some towing capacity|
|IONIQ 5: Pros||IONIQ 5: Cons|
|Sporty streamliner design||Somewhat more pricey|
|Futuristic cabin features and lighting||Slightly restricted rear seat|
|Good rearward visibility||Reduced cargo space|
|Loungy driver’s seat|
|Power adjustable heated seats|
|Sleek, attractive styling|
The IONIQ 6 vs IONIQ 5: 5 Must-Know Facts
- The IONIQ 5 is a crossover SUV for families, while the IONIQ 6 is a fast, somewhat luxurious sedan aimed at singles.
- The IONIQ 5 has up to 59 cubic feet of cargo space.
- The IONIQ 5’s range tops out at 303 miles, while the IONIQ 6 may offer a 332 to 379 miles range (currently guesstimates).
- Both models feature advanced driver assist features, though the IONIQ 6’s may be upgraded.
- Both models are very similar in terms of basic performance.
IONIQ 6 vs IONIQ 5: Which is Better?
Both the Hyundai IONIQ 5 and IONIQ 6 are comfortable, competent, polished early 2020s EVs. Which model is better depends on the needs of the potential owner. The company appears to have fulfilled its openly expressed design goals for each vehicle. The IONIQ 5 is a passenger crossover best adapted to people with families, or those who need cargo space and towing capability. On the other hand, its IONIQ 6 sibling offers a more upscale and gadget-rich driving experience for single professionals and couples who don’t need significant cargo space. The IONIQ 5 is also likely more affordable than the Ioniq 6, but has fewer luxury features.