The arrestingly-styled EV6 represents a number of firsts for Kia; not only is it the company’s 1st standalone battery electric vehicle and the maiden product to wear the brand’s updated logo – it incorporates the firm’s new “Opposites United” design language.
The EV6 is underpinned by Hyundai Kia’s Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) and will the first of 7 EVs (they’ll all named EV followed by a number suffix) that Kia intends to launch by 2027 as part of its Plan S product strategy. Physically, the new model is 4 680 mm long, 1 880 mm wide, and 1 550 mm tall, plus has a wheelbase of 2 900 mm.
Thanks to the flexibility of the Hyundai/Kia E-GMP platform, the EV6 is available in an assortment of options. Standard and long-range batteries are available, and customers can choose between rear and all-wheel drive. The entry-level model features a 58 kWh battery with a rear-mounted motor and its good for 125 kW and 350 Nm. The all-wheel drive version of this entry-level model produces 173 kW and 605 Nm, and Kia claims a 0-100 kph sprint of just 6.2 seconds.
Go for the bigger 77.4 kWh battery and you get more range and a more powerful engine. The rear-wheel drive option has 168 kW and 350 Nm, while its all-wheel drive sibling packs 239 kW and 605 Nm. The sprint time is down to 5.2 seconds and the range is claimed at 510km using the WLTP combined cycle.
The flagship EV6 GT model comes with all-wheel drive and the bigger battery has some serious firepower. An output of 430 kW and 740 Nm is claimed and 0-100 kph is obliterated in 3.5 seconds. A top speed of 260 kph is claimed along with a range of 405 km.
Perhaps the most impressive stats regarding the EV6 are not its performance, but rather the charging. This new E-GMP platform boasts 400V and 800V capability, the latter allowing for quick charging times. Kia reckons it can go from 10% - 80% in just 18 minutes. If you're pressed for time, 100 km of range is possible in under 5 minutes. There's some clever engineering at play here, with things like energy-efficient heat pumps that scavenge waste heat, regenerative braking with six levels as well as vehicle-to-load charging. Essentially, your car could power your house during load-shedding. The car is also able to charge other electric vehicles.
Inside, the futuristic cabin features a minimalist layout with a 12-inch digital dashboard and 12-inch infotainment screen. Kia says there'll be over-the-air updates and real-time services. The car also features lightweight seats made from recycled plastics.
As for South African availability, nothing is set in stone yet, but Kia South Africa is keen to get a few units in for testing and feasibility studies. Watch this space!