Ambitious plans for electric vehicles
Roseville, Calif.- Kia has introduced a new electric vehicle and it’s a good one.
Meet the 2022 Kia EV6, a compact crossover SUV that made its U.S. debut this February in all 50 states. A second version of the EV6, the more powerful GT, arrives later this year.
Kia previously introduced the Niro, which can be purchased as a traditional gas-powered vehicle, a plug-in hybrid or an all-electric.
The South Korean automaker has ambitious plans for the future. Kia is part of the Hyundai Motor Group (Hyundai is the parent company) and has announced a strategy for producing 11 all-electric vehicles by 2026.
Although the EV6 shares the same platform as the Hyundai Ioniq 5 EV, that’s where the similarities mostly end. The EV6 is far more stylish, thanks in part to its sleek roofline that has one pondering whether it’s a hatchback or an SUV.
Kia demonstrated little imagination in naming the EV6, yet it did produce a stylish SUV that can accommodate five passengers. It has low-mounted headlights and taillights that go the width of the body, giving it a sporty, athletic appearance that the Ioniq 5 can’t match. It also has a sharply raked windshield and distinctive retractable door handles.
There are two battery pack options with the EV6 – a 58-kWh and 77-kWh battery. The larger battery gives the SUV an estimated range of 300 miles, roughly 25 miles more than the smaller version. An 800-volt charger can get the EV6 from 10 to 80-percent battery capacity in approximately 18 minutes. Using a Level 2 home outlet takes about seven hours for a full charge.
At a Glance – 2022 KIA EV6
- Performance: single motor, 58.0-kWh battery, 167 horsepower; dual motors, 77-kWh battery, 313 horsepower
- Mileage estimate: 117 mpge
- Price estimate: $40,900 to $55,900
- Warranty: 5 years/60,000 miles; Drivetrain: 10-year/100,000-mile; Battery: 10 years, unlimited. Roadside assistance: 5 years/60,000; Corrosion: 5 years/100,000 miles
The standard EV6 is rear-wheel drive and has the 58-kWh battery, a single motor, and delivers a modest 167 horsepower. If equipped with the larger battery it hikes to 218 horsepower.
The dual-motor, all-wheel-drive EV6 configuration employs the large battery and generates 313 horsepower. As one would expect, the larger battery makes it much faster – capable of going 0-60 mph in 5.1 seconds.
And the GT model will up the performance even more, thanks to more powerful front and rear electric motors that give it a whopping 576 horsepower. Kia says it goes 0-60 mph in Tesla-like 3.5 seconds and has a top speed of 161 mph.
Like all EVs, the Kia EV6 uses a regenerative braking system. It has six different braking modes for the driver to select that are conveniently operated on the steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
Safety & Interior
The standard driver safety features include smart cruise control, highway driving assist, blind-spot monitoring, blind spot avoidance assist, high beam assist, rear cross-traffic alert, and lane-keeping assist. Remote parking assist is an option.
The EV6 cabin is deceiving; it’s spacious and more like a midsize SUV than a compact. Kia claims its wheelbase is as long as the three-row, gas-powered Kia Telluride, a midsize SUV.
Kia veered away from its typical interior styling and designed the EV6 with a somewhat futuristic look and a good amount of high-tech content that includes standard Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, wireless smartphone charging, and a Wi-Fi hotspot. There’s vegan leather on some trim models and the door panels and dashboard are made of recycled plastics.
The Kia SUV has a floating center console and two 12.0-inch displays, a touchscreen and digital gauge cluster. Cool features include the start button conveniently located on the center console and a two-tone, two-spoke steering wheel.
The cargo area is 24.4 cubic feet and extends to 54 cubes with the rear seatbacks folded flat. There’s also a small front storage area (frunk) under the hood.
A well-designed compact SUV with lots of upside, the 2022 Kia EV6 has much to offer for anyone looking to purchase an electrified compact SUV.