Kia has been manufacturing electric vehicles for quite some time, beginning with the Soul EV in 2014, followed by the Niro EV in 2018. But the vehicle that's got everyone talking, and for good reasons, as it's one of the best-looking affordable cars on the market, is the EV6. Many people have ordered one of these, but how is it? Keep reading to learn more about the new star in the Korean automakers' lineup! Our test model had an MSRP of $65,259 and was built at the Hwasung, South Korea plant.
Kia secured success with the EV6 with its bold and sleek look. The trio of new electric vehicles from the Hyundai group (Hyundai Ioniq5, Kia EV6 and Genesis GV60) each have their personality while sharing the platform. Kia stands out as the design team pushed towards a more aggressive styling to emphasize the sportiness of this new model, with the front grille placed lower to distinguish it from its siblings. It is the best-looking part of the vehicle: sporty and not over-the-top is a difficult line to tiptoe, and Kia did an admirable job. The side profile is interesting, with the 20-inch wheels stretched in both directions to improve the passenger room inside. The black accents on the doors' lower parts are also a nice touch. The door handles are flat to the surface when the car is locked, which gives it a sleek look. The rear taillight light bar is hard to miss, and the brake lights are detailed and fun. Overall, the EV6 design is modern and futuristic, and we're all for it.
When you step inside the EV6, it looks as modern as the outside. The combination of black and white accents on the seats is excellent, and the dashboard looks terrific with its curved dual-screen setup. They are both 12.3-inches digital screens, the one in the middle being a touchscreen, which we'll get to in a moment. The screen facing the driver will also adapt depending on which drive mode you choose, a pretty neat feature. It is configurable, and we especially liked the speed graphic, which reports real-time acceleration. The steering wheel has a nice grip; details like this make a big difference in the long run.
This vehicle is also great for passengers; it is roomy enough for four adults. The seats are comfortable and offer proper back support. In the back, you may think that the shape of the roof would take away some headroom but don't worry, it doesn't; this is a practical vehicle, first and foremost. You will find many amenities in the back: You can use the middle seat as an armrest with two cup holders and a household-style outlet, in case both USB-C ports on the front seats aren't enough to power all your devices! The two outer seats are heated. They each have ISOFIX ports clearly indicated and rear anchors on the back. Cargo space is also not a problem, but it increases by a lot (up to 1,322L) when you fold down the seats. Practicality is a strong suit of the Kia EV6.
The infotainment system in this new electric car isn't revolutionary; it is a layout used in other Kia products. The saying "don't fix what's not broken" applies here since it is already one of the best in the industry. The 12.3-inch touchscreen is responsive, and the range left display looks neat. Apple Carplay and Android Auto are available, but you have to plug your device in, which is a shame since so many automakers are offering it wirelessly. That said, the Meridian sound system is an excellent upgrade over the standard speakers found on the base model. At first glance, you might be wondering where the climate controls are. You will find a small screen underneath the climate vents in the middle. This screen has a dual purpose: climate and radio/media controls. The knobs control volume or temperature; you can switch between any of these functions with the touch of a button. It's a clever and modern solution to simplify the area and give people what they want: buttons. The heated seat controls are located on the center console, where you will start the car. Every important control is close to the driver and is accessible without looking through endless menus on a large screen.
Now that we know that this new electric offering looks gorgeous from the inside and the outside, what about the electric performance? Before going any further, the Kia EV6 has many variants and configurations:
You can get it either with rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
You can get the standard range (58 kWh battery) or the long-range (77.4 kWh battery).
As soon as you get long-range, you get a heat pump to preserve the range for colder climates as best as possible.
The range varies between 373 km (232 mi) and 499 km (310 mi) with our test model, an all-wheel drive Long Range with the GT-Line Package 2 rated at 406 km (252 mi). We achieved 399 km during our week, achievable on a typical summer usage. That gives you an idea of which version of the EV6 you wish to prioritize. Charging takes about 18 minutes on a 350 kW charger and a little over an hour (63 min) on the 50 kW.
That being said, the EV6 has a sporty appearance, and our test version certainly delivered. The GT-Line boasts a decent time of 5.2 seconds to reach 100 kph with the large battery pack that produces 320 hp and 446 lb-ft of torque. Depending on your mood, you can switch between the more leisurely acceleration in Eco mode or the full potential in Power mode. We were pleasantly surprised by the precise handling of this car. The steering and the suspension have been well-calibrated to make it a well-balanced vehicle so that you can genuinely appreciate the instant throttle response. The comfort isn't compromised at low speeds, the suspension is smooth, and the one-pedal driving is excellent. At any given moment, you can have fun with the EV6, and that's its best attribute.
The short story is the Kia EV6 is a wonderful car. Kia has been raising the standards in every category in the last few years, but this may be their biggest hit yesterday t. The best is yet to come with the EV6 GT coming into dealers, the most powerful car from the Korean automaker. This is the golden standard if you're looking for the best value for your money.
KIA has lent us this vehicle as a press vehicle. We have no affiliation with KIA Canada. The above reflects our personal opinion.