The all-electric Kia EV6, which had its global launch today, marks a milestone in the Korean automaker’s zero-emissions quest.
Called the automaker’s first “dedicated” battery-electric vehicle (BEV), the EV6 brings fast charging, long range and a long list of safety features, all wrapped up in a ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy.
The Kia EV6 is built on the brand’s all-new Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) that will underpin future models. Aside from BEVs, it will also underpin plug-in hybrids and hybrid electric vehicles.
The company has big ambitions for this platform – it wants sales of such vehicles to make up 40 percent of total sales by 2030, or 1.6 million units.
For the EV6 itself, it’s the tip of a long spear – it is the first of 11 BEVs by 2026 from Kia. It will go on sale in the second half of 2021.
As part of this, Kia aims to grow its BEV sales to 880,000 units in 2030.
The Kia EV6 brings modern, crisp styling that thoroughly befits a car of the electric age of motoring.
With a low and wide ‘Digital Tiger Face’ front end that swoops backwards to meet a tail not entirely unlike an Aston Martin DBX’s, it’s a handsome car and surely something customers can appreciate.
With a wheelbase of 2,900mm, Kia says the EV6 has cabin space “similar to many mid-size SUVs”. Without an engine, that could mean vast interior space. For comparison, the spacious seven-seater Mercedes-Benz GLB has a wheelbase of 2,829mm.
WHAT’S UNDER THE BONNET?
The Kia EV6 comes in two battery flavours – a 58kWh (standard) or 77.4 kWh (long-range) pack. It is Kia’s first electric vehicle to be available with two-wheel (2WD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) options.
The top-end EV6 GT is only available in the larger battery size and with AWD. It’s powered by dual 430kW (576hp) motors with a maximum 740Nm of torque.
It can accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in a supercar-rivalling 3.5 seconds – that’s some serious power.
Meanwhile, the 2WD 77.4 kWh EV6 can travel over 510 kilometres (316 miles) between charges. With a maximum 605Nm of torque on the AWD version, the EV6 can accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in just 5.2 seconds.
KIA EV6: CHARGING
The EV6 variants come with both 800V and 400V electric architectures. Interestingly, the 800V architecture was first seen on the Porsche Taycan, a car which blew the collective minds of the motoring press.
The EV6 can recharge from 10 to 80 per cent in just 18 minutes across all variants. If you’re in a hurry, it can sip a charge enough for 100km of range in less than five minutes on the larger battery option.
If you run out of power somewhere in the wilderness (where in Singapore, we don’t know), the car can discharge power via its Integrated Charging Control Unit (ICCU).
Kia says it outputs enough power to run a 55-inch television and air conditioner simultaneously for more than 24 hours (useful if you’re glamping!).
If you want to be a Good Samaritan, the system is also able to charge another EV.
Jochen Pasesen, Kia’s vice-president for interior design, noted in a statement that the most important thing for the company was “designing an inspiring space” inside.
New “relaxation seats” combine style with sustainability – Kia says the amount of recycled plastic in the EV6’s seats are equal to about 111 water bottles. Good to know that’s all being kept off our beaches!
And prepare for the invasion of the screens. The infotainment is handled by two curved 12-inch screens, and there is also an augmented-reality heads-up display system that shows driving information as well as navigation instructions.
Kia’s connected car system “Kia Connect” is included, enabling delivery of real time services and over-the-air (OTA) updates. Drivers can find locations and pricing of EV charging points, view their vehicle’s charging status, plan smart charging schedules and check the range radius based on the remaining charge.
If you’re worried about safety, the Kia EV6 has you covered. It has everything from Safe Exit Assist, Lane Following Assist, Highway Driving Assist and even a smart parking system that the driver can operate from outside the vehicle.