Bottom line: A rock-solid commuter at a better than expected price.
Pros: Smooth-shifting Alfine 8 rear hub provides 1x8 effectiveness for speed on the flats and spinning up the climbs. Shimano hydraulic discs grip hard, modulate well. Upright seating for cutting through urban traffic. Basic pedals are pretty decent. Quick steering, easy to carry up stairs.
Cons: Stiff and lightweight 7005 series aluminum frame can feel too light (brittle) over broken pavement (compared to steel, carbon, or Ti). Front brake cable is already rubbing the paint off the head tube after the first (13 mile) ride. WTB/Kona saddle is small and hard - not ideal for commuting w/o padded shorts.
Nuances: Easy and quick to assemble out of the box with clamping the bar, dropping in the seatpost, and minor cockpit adjustments. You'll need to adjust the rear hub (also quick and easy) and disc brakes (not quite as quick and easy). Air up the tires and you're off! Smooth roller with the 700x28 Continental tires although there's a fair bit of feedback/vibration through the frame. The 4 lower speeds of the Alfine hub are tightly spaced, very low, and best suited for climbing. For folks who prefer a 68-86 rpm cadence while pedaling around town, you'll probably be shifting between 4-5-6 most of the time (assuming you're riding on flat ground). Visibility is good in traffic as the cockpit is pretty tight and upright.
I'll be looking to mount fenders and a rear rack in the near future and it looks like the frame has the appropriate mounting points.
It's hard to tell from the pictures but the top and down tubes are shaped [hexagonal] adding some stiffness to the tubes. Seat tube and seat stays are round while the chain stays are ovalized (tall/narrow). Clean welds all around. Paragon slider dropouts make rear end adjustments and swapping tires easy. Front has a quick-release skewer which is great for pulling off the front wheel but not so good if you're locking your bike up outdoors.
All-in-all, a great value on a solid bike. Looks like Kona thought this one through given its intended purpose and has been making incremental improvements from year to year. Just remember to put one or two clear stickers on the head tube where the front brake cable rubs when the bike is new and you'll avoid this minor annoyance.
EDIT: I just noticed that the bike I received came with Continental CONTACT 700x28 tires instead of the Maxxis Overdrive 700x28 tires listed in the description. I'm assuming they ride the same but wanted to point that out. Everything else is as advertised.