Kia has fully revealed its new Tesla Model S-rivalling electric saloon, and the range-topping GT is rather quick
Having teased the world with some images of its new ‘EV6’ a couple of weeks ago while offering little in the way of detail, Kia has now given its new plug-in creation the full reveal treatment. And, of course, we’re going to be childish and immediately look at the fastest one.
That’s the EV6 GT, a dual-motor version kicking out some 576bhp, enabling a 0-62mph time of 3.5 seconds. Yes, you’re looking at a Kia that’ll out drag a Ferrari Enzo to the benchmark figure, while matching a base Audi R8, if you’d rather a more contemporary comparison.
For most that performance is a little needless, but thankfully there are plenty of other options. Right at the other end of the spectrum is a single-motor, rear-drive EV6 making a considerably more modest 168bhp. It uses the 58kWh ‘standard range battery pack, as does the all-wheel drive derivative one rung up the EV6 ladder. It develops 232bhp and 446lb ft of torque, making for a respectable 0-62mph time of 6.2 seconds.
Opt for the 77.4kWh long-range battery, and the rear-drive EV6’s power output jumps to 225bhp, while its all-wheel drive big bro puts out 321bhp and the same torque figure as the 2WD 58kWh car. It does 0-62mph in 5.2 seconds.
The rear-drive 77.4kWh EV6 gets the range bragging rights, capable of going up to 316 miles on a single charge. Kia hasn’t offered figures for the other derivates yet, but we do know that 800-volt charging capability will make it possible to recharge the battery from 10 to 80 per cent in as little as 18 minutes.
Unlike the popular E-Niro, which is adapted from the internal combustion-powered Niro, the EV6 uses Kia/Hyundai‘s E-GMP dedicated EV platform. Sitting on that is a car Kia describes as a “crossover,” confusingly also referring to the EV6’s “crossover-inspired silhouette” later in the release.
That latter description is more apt – rather like the Polestar 2, it’s not really a true crossover or SUV, and not a proper hatchback either. Expect these kinds of vehicles to become more common – it’s tricky to have low rooflines and ride heights when you have a bunch of batteries sitting under the carpet, unless you go for the ‘foot garage’ route of the Porsche Taycan and Audi E-Tron GT.
Inside meanwhile are lightweight seats clad in “robust fabrics” made from recycled plastic (111 plastic water bottles worth of the stuff, apparently), with two 12-inch screens forming the instrument cluster and infotainment display. There’s also a two-spoke steering wheel, which on the GT includes a Hyundai N-style drive select button in a lovely shade of green. Just ahead of that is an augmented reality head-up display system.
The starting price will inevitably be higher than the average Kia, but probably not extortionate either. We’d speculate somewhere around the £40,000, although the GT will be considerably more.
It’ll be built in South Korea and go on sale in some markets during the second half of the year. For some territories, pre-orders open on 31 March.