Sharing its E-GMP (Electric-Global Modular Platform) platform within HMG (Hyundai Motor Group) with the Ioniq 5, the Kia EV6 opens a new all-electric era for the manufacturer. Presented as a crossover, it features a massive silhouette that breaks with Kia codes.
The EV6 is offered in two output levels: 168 kW (229 hp) with rear-wheel drive and 239 kW (325 hp) with all-wheel drive. A strong GT version with 585 hp will appear soon. A 77.4 kWh battery drives the motor(s) (positioned on the rear axle or on each of the axles, depending on the version) for between 508 km and 528 km in mixed WLTP, depending on the engine.
A new version with a 58 kWh battery and 170 hp is now also available, bringing the price down to 47,990 euros. Our test version in the design finish with a 229 hp motor and 77.4 kWh battery costs 55,790 euros. For its part, the all-wheel drive version costs €4,000 more.
In all cases, the 800V architecture can charge the battery from 10% to 80% in 18 minutes and is compatible with V2L charging (optional). In addition, there are two screens, each 12.3 inches, from the lowest trim levels and help with lane keeping, support in traffic jams, semi-autonomous driving or even emergency braking and the recognition of speed limit signs.
Promising on paper, the Kia EV6 presents interesting arguments that we were keen to evaluate under real conditions.
ergonomics and design
With its athletic design, the Kia EV6 exhibits a dynamic style that contrasts with the more consensual design to which the manufacturer had become accustomed. If the lines are less sharp than those of its Ioniq 5 cousin, the Kia EV6’s silhouette mixes curves and stops to assert a sporty look.
Up front, the closed, deep grille is highlighted by a pair of full-LED matrix headlights positioned in a boomerang pattern. The ribbed hood frames twin arched fenders, sculpted sides with flush door handles stretch the silhouette backwards, and the nose reveals an original lighting design. The light signature describes a curved line of LEDs that emanates from the rear wheel arch and extends across the entire width of the trunk. The front is reinforced by a spoiler integrated into the roof, which completes the vehicle’s aerodynamics.
The EV6 is 4.68 m long, almost as long as the Ford Mustang Mach-E (4.71 m) and the Tesla Model Y (4.75 m). That is more than, for example, the Volkswagen ID.4 (4.58 m) and the Hyundai Ioniq 5 (4.64 m). With a height of 1.55 m, it is still lower than these SUVs.
Most surprising is the wheelbase, which peaks at 2.9 m. This benefits the livability, especially in the rear seats, since the occupants of the bench seat can also look forward to a level floor. It’s a pity, however, that the middle passenger doesn’t have a separate seat.
Another complaint, given the EV6’s size, we would have liked a higher cargo volume. If it’s not ridiculous (490L; 1300L with the bench folded), this remains lower than, for example, that of a Mustang Mach-E (519L), an Ioniq 5 (527L) and the champion of its kind, the Model Y ( 854 l).
For comfort, we count on the 52 l of the “Frunk” (front trunk) of the two-wheel drive version.
Note that passengers can benefit from a domestic socket (230V) capable of delivering a maximum power of 3.6 kW.
comfort and equipment
The interior of the EV6 reveals a flattering, modern design with adjustments at a good level. The choice of certain materials such as fabric upholstery made from recycled plastic and eco-leather bring a touch of originality. On the other hand, the twin-spoke steering wheel’s design stands a little too far from the EV6’s sporty silhouette, and when its controls are well-placed, the associated pictograms aren’t the most obvious.
Likewise, if the assemblies are correct, the details of the finishes mark a little time due to an exaggerated use of hard plastic, including the lower parts and the floating center console.
The latter includes an induction charger for smartphones, parking assistance buttons and a 360° camera, as well as the P, N, D, R gear selector wheel. The selection of driving modes is deported directly to the steering wheel and controlled by thumb. Overall, the controls are easy to hold, but you have to take your eyes off the road to access certain comfort functions.
Below the center vents, a series of touch controls allow you to select UI menus and change how this banner is displayed. You can therefore access either audio or navigation shortcuts or ventilation controls. Two physical dials complete this control. Everything is easy to use, but not as simple as traditional controls.
The top of the dashboard houses two screens, each 12.3 inches, connected in a slightly curved frame. The central touchscreen dedicated to infotainment has an architecture and layout identical to that of the Ioniq 5. The graphics are modern, the responsiveness is correct without being exceptional, and the interface is complete and dense – it will take a little getting used to.
Many settings are available, such as B. the ability to choose the maximum load, driver assistance, comfort options, brightness adjustment or even access to Kia Live. However, we find that the matte panel is particularly sensitive to fingerprints when it offers good brightness.
The navigation offers an acceptable experience. Unlike many manufacturers, it is possible to predict the vehicle’s range in relation to the remaining autonomy. However, we regret the lack of a “route planner” that would integrate the loading stages into the navigation route.
The seats offer good support and support. The ventilation of the seats and their heating as well as the heating of the steering wheel can be activated using buttons on the center console.
Finally, the digital instrumentation on another 12.3-inch screen does not revolutionize its field, but it is legible and easy to handle. However, we regret that displaying the navigation map is not possible on this interface.
handling and performance
The Kia EV6 is a beautiful baby whose imposing size doesn’t make the city its preferred terrain. Nevertheless, the softness of the controls makes the maneuvers particularly easy. The quality of the 3D renderings and the rear camera offer a good view of the surroundings and the obstacle detection radars are fairly accurate.
The steering is soft, relatively well calibrated, but without offering very exhausting feedback. Comfort is also very good with the 20-inch rims, but the weight of 2075 kg is very noticeable with a somewhat dynamic driving style. The 229 hp and 350 Nm of our test version are clearly not too much. However, they offer sufficient performance with a announced 0 to 100 km/h of 7.3 s. Despite its lines, the Kia EV6 proves to be a good grand tourer and shows a certain neutrality in corners despite a slight sagging of the front axle at corner entry. The rear is a bit stiffer, but the whole is healthy.
The Kia EV6 benefits from 4-stage regeneration, with one pedal mode allowing driving with just the right pedal outside of emergency situations. The recovery when lifting the foot is then quite considerable, but could give the passengers annoying kicks in the kidneys. On the other hand, we really appreciate this mode alone on board, especially in a suburban environment.
The Kia EV6 gives pride of place to driving aids with a Level 2 autonomous mode that combines adaptive cruise control and a lane centering function. The feature is well-tuned to the Autobahn, especially with useful support in traffic jams. However, the lane change assistant, which requires very open conditions, did not convince us. The automatic adjustment of the speed on the motorway to the navigation data and the recognition of the traffic signs also lead to phantom braking.
The EV6 is allowed to tow up to 1600 kg provided its battery charge is more than 35%.
autonomy and charging
The EV6 is now available with a 58kWh battery (and 170PS) to lower the entry ticket, but range is just 394km on the WLTP combo cycle.
Our test version was equipped with a usable 77.4 kWh battery, for a maximum range of 528 km in the WLTP combined cycle, according to the manufacturer. According to our measurements, we found a mixed range of 424 km, with an average consumption of 18.2 kWh/100 km: 15.3 kWh in the city, 17.5 kWh on the road and 23.4 kWh on the highway.
On the charging side, according to Kia, the EV6 accepts up to 10.5 kW AC as standard, for a charge from 10 to 100% in 7 h 20 min. Rather, this crossover is characterized by its DC charging power of up to 239 kW, thanks to its 800 V architecture, so that a charge from 10 to 80% is possible in just 18 minutes on a compatible terminal device.
Comprehensive driving aids.
flexibility of commands
Loading speed on compatible end devices.
agility in the city.
Trunk volume compared to the overall dimensions.
Abundance of submenus in the user interface.
How does the classification work?
The Kia EV6 is one of the best electric cars reviewed by the editors. While it suffers from certain shortcomings, such as a trunk volume that is a bit small compared to its dimensions, a finish that is a bit disappointing given its price and an interface that takes some getting used to, this 100% electric crossover has good energy efficiency and, above all, a considerable and efficient equipment, yes from the first expansion stage. In addition, its handling, although not as dynamic as its line suggests, is safe and comfortable. In short, the Kia EV6 offers a compelling electric experience, crowned with a charging speed that minimizes the time spent at the terminal.