Kia's Electric Car Future: Everything You Need to Know

What we know about the onslaught of cool electric vehicles on the way.

kia concept ev9
Kia

Kia updated us on the brand's future product planning and sustainable vision in March. The new plan expands on the previous Plan S strategy, calling for Kia to launch at least two new battery-electric vehicles per year, increasing the total to 14 EVs on sale by 2027 — not all available in the American market. Here's what we know so far.

Is Kia planning to go all-electric?

Not in the short or intermediate term. The brand has a product plan for 2030. But unlike luxury manufacturers like Mercedes and Lexus, it's not a plan to go all-electric. Kia wants 52% of its global sales to be eco-friendly (electric, PHEV or hybrid) by 2030. Kia expects that number to be about 78% in major markets like North America, Europe, China and Korea.

Does Kia have an EV sub-brand?

Yes. Many of Kia's new electric cars, particularly those running on Hyundai's new E-GMP platform, will carry straightforward "EV" alphanumeric branding. The number, EV6 or EV9 for example, will represent the vehicle's relative position in the lineup rather than a chronological release date.

Why would you buy a Kia EV instead of a Tesla?

Besides Kia producing better-looking cars? Charging. Hyundai's E-GMP platform vehicles are capable of both 800V and 400V fast-charging. Teslas only use 400V. The Kia EV6 can charge from 10-80% on a fast charger in only 18 minutes. Unlike Teslas, Kia's E-GMP EVs also have Ford F-150 Lightning-like vehicle-to-load functionality (V2L), allowing them to send power back out to devices, campsites, other EVs or even the home in the event of a blackout.

Current Kia Electric Cars for Sale in America

2022 kia ev6 npi
Kia

Kia EV6

The Kia EV6 is Kia's first vehicle on the Hyundai group's electric-only E-GMP platform, also used for the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Genesis GV60. Kia calls it a "sports crossover." We'd also accept "station wagon." The EV6 reads like a smaller car with its sports car styling cues, but it's deceptively large with the same wheelbase as a Kia Telluride. It will carry a lot of water in the Kia EV lineup, serving as a 167-hp entry-level model, a 577-hp Porsche-killer and everything in between. Sporty and fun to drive, the Kia EV6 is our best electric car to buy in 2022.

Range: up to 310 miles

All 50 States: Yes

Starting Price: $40,900

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Kia Niro EV

The Niro is a Kia compact crossover that slots between the Seltos and the Sportage. As you would anticipate, the Niro EV is an electric version — hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants are also available. It's all new for 2023 with styling cues from the HabaNiro concept. It offers front-wheel drive and 201 horsepower. It can charge from 10-80% in 45 minutes and does have V2L charging capability.

Range: up to 253 miles

All 50 States: Yes

Starting Price: $39,990

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Future Kia Electric Cars

kia concept ev9
Kia

Kia EV9

Kia has previewed the EV9 in concept form as a boxy flagship electric vehicle that will arrive in 2023. It should be the electric equivalent of the Telluride. It will accelerate from 0-60 mph in about five seconds, have a range of around 335 miles and add about 62 miles of range in six minutes when fast charging. Kia says it will feature over-the-air software updates and feature-on-demand services.

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Kia Electric Pickups

Kia confirmed plans to build two electric pickups. The brand is calling one a "dedicated electric pickup," which should arrive sometime in 2024 or later and be built and available in the United States. The other will be a "strategic model for emerging markets."

Other Kia EVs

Kia mentioned that an entry-level battery-electric vehicle will be one of the 14 electric vehicles by 2027. There's no word yet about what that means or whether Kia will bring it to the American market.

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