2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 / James Gent, The Charge

In anticipation of the arrival of the 2023 Ioniq 5 hatchback and the 2023 Ioniq 6 sedan, Hyundai has announced a new battery ‘preconditioning feature’ that promises to streamline the charging experience offered to customers.

As it stands, some Hyundai vehicles (specifically, the long-range versions of the Ioniq 5 and the Kia EV6) offer exceptionally fast charging times, allowing drivers to recharge their vehicle from 10 per cent to 80 per cent on a 350-kW CCS connector in just 18 minutes. However, Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 drivers have noted that attempting to charge their vehicle in anything less than warm weather leads to “unpredictable charging rates and times.”

Hyundai Ioniq 6

Hyundai Ioniq 6

While Hyundai’s existing ‘Winter Mode’ works to remedy this issue by warming the battery to improve performance in cold temperatures, Hyundai’s new ‘Battery Conditioning’ mode reportedly heats the battery up to a higher target temperature.

Read more: Hyundai breaks ground on EV factory in the US

To initiate this new feature, drivers will simply have to set a DC fast-charging station as their destination, at which point the Battery Conditioning mode will automatically use extra energy to heat up the battery over approximately 20 minutes in anticipation of arrival at the charging station. Based on early demos of the new technology, when the vehicles is preconditioning the battery, the battery percentage icon displayed on the screen shows a red core, and for four seconds a message illuminates, stating: “Battery conditioning activated for optimal DC charging.” Hyundai also reportedly has an app-based battery-heating feature in the works to supplement this new feature.

So far, Hyundai has confirmed the U.S. will get the feature for 2023; however, it has not yet been confirmed if battery preconditioning will be offered for 2022 and earlier models as an optional retrofit. To this effect, Kia Europe recently revealed that battery preconditioning will be standard on 2023 models in the European market, including the EV6, EV6 GT, and Niro EV, while it will be offered to 2022 EV6 models as a dealer-installed software upgrade. According to Kia, the new feature can unlock a 50 per cent improvement in charge time — from 35 minutes without it in cold temperatures, to the originally promised 18 minutes.

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