Kia – an automaker once known for its bargain bin prices – wants to tap into some of that old magic with EVs, sort of. The automaker is aiming to build new mass-market compact EVs that’ll start in the mid-$30,000 range, according to Automotive News.
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The first of these vehicles will be the EV5 crossover – Kia’s third dedicated, fully electric vehicle. Eventually, it’ll build into a lineup of four affordable EVs that Kia reportedly hopes will be a major volume mover for the Korean automaker. Three of these EVs are set to enter production sometime in 2024, and right now they are being considered for sale in North America, but no promises yet. They’re part of a plan from Kia for EVs to generate about a quarter of the company’s total sales – about 1 million vehicles – by 2026.
The EV5 crossover will slot nicely next to the EV6 hatchback/crossover thing, but instead of the flowing lines of the 6, the 5 is far more boxy and looks like a smaller version of the full-size, three-row EV9 crossover. It’s a nifty little design. Coming up after these two bad boys are the EV3 and EV4, and they’ll be priced from $35,000 to $50,000, according to AutoNews. Those prices are well below the $54,900 MSRP that the EV9 starts at.
Affordability is the new name of the game for Kia’s EV strategy. CEO Ho Sung Song made that very clear at the automaker’s first EV Day strategy briefing earlier this week.
“It is clear that two major barriers continue to hold back the mass majority from buying EVs: high pricing and charging inconveniences,” Song reportedly said. “Given this limitation of EVs, Kia plans to meet customer expectations by offering a full lineup of EVs at various price points.
He even apparently teased plans for an even smaller EV2 that’ll be built in Europe starting in 2025. That vehicle could have an even lower price point than the previously mentioned vehicles.
Anyway, the EV5 is the next EV on Kia’s slate, but there’s no guarantee that it’s coming to America. The earliest it would show up is the middle of 2025. It’s a similar story with the EV3 and EV4. We may be living on the moon at that point. Don’t worry, though. Not all is lost if you’re a Kia stan. The company is apparently planning another nameplate for the U.S. that’ll be built here. That vehicle, as you may have guessed, is the EV9. It’s slated to begin production in Georgia next year.