Kia's EV6 (Kia)
For South Korea’s second-largest carmaker Kia, its sister brand Hyundai Motor is both the closest partner and biggest rival in the fast expanding battery electric vehicle market.
Set to deliver the EV6 in the later half of the year, Kia has chosen to emphasize the extensive driving range and harmonious design proportion -- vying with Hyundai Motor’s Ioniq 5, which is noted for its spacious interior and futuristic design.
Earlier this week, the carmaker unveiled the EV6 to the media, making the first offline showcase since the digital world premiere held in March.
The three models provided on the scene were: a glacier color two-wheel-drive long range model, a yacht blue GT-Line four-wheel-drive long range car, and a matte gray GT four-wheel-drive option. The GT model was provided as a preliminary sample as the corresponding line is to hit the market in the second half of next year.
Compared to the Ioniq 5, the EV6 is generally longer and narrower, assuming a sleek and sporty silhouette.
The standard model is 4,680 millimeters in full length and 1,880 millimeters in width, 40 millimeters longer and 10 millimeters narrower than Hyundai Motor’s Ioniq 5. Its height is 1,550 millimeters, slightly lower than the Ioniq 5. The diameter of the wheelbase comes in at 2,900 millimeters, equal to that of the Palisade large-sized SUV.
From a design perspective, the EV6 carries a combination of apparently opposite factors -- reflecting the design slogan “Opposites United.”
Kia's EV6 (Kia)
Citing the rear slope that is relatively gentle compared to other SUVs, as well as the sleek front face, Kia described the EV6 as a combination of a fastback, hatch, and rally car.
Minimizing air resistance and maximizing speed efficiency are the active air flap on the front bumper and the rear deck spoiler in the back.
The inside space is noted for the 12.3-inch panoramic curved display and sustainable materials, such as recycled plastic and vegan leather.
While providing a spacious and pleasant interior, Kia’s design officials chose to focus more on the proportion of the entire vehicle, as well as its driving functions.
Senior Vice President and design chief Karim Antoine Habib explained at the March premiere that the EV6 was designed to optimize the frame proportions, which consequently set some limits on the maximum interior space.
CEO Song Ho-sung stressed the maximum driving range of the model, which reached 510 kilometers on a single charge at a preliminary test. The given test was carried out on the EV6 Standard Long Range model, under conditions defined by the Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicle Test Procedure, or WLTP.
Another distinguishing factor of the EV6, compared to the Ioniq 5, is its upcoming premium GT line that will likely hit the market in the second half of next year.
Empowered by a 430 kilowatt dual motor, the EV6 GT takes 3.5 seconds to reach 100 kph from zero, marking the fastest speed among all Kia car models so far. Its maximum speed is 260 kph, the top among Korean EVs.
The price for the standard model will start in the higher 40 million-won range, while the premium GT Model is expected to be priced at the lower 70 million-won range. The corresponding figures exclude tax benefits and assume a special consumption tax rate of 3.5 percent.
Taking into account the EV subsidies distributed by the central and local governments, the standard model may be priced as low as the mid 30 million-won range.
Kia also plans to roll out EV6 in the US market, starting early next year, and to add the GT line-up in late 2022, officials said.
By Bae Hyun-jung (email@example.com