Kia is on a roll. Hot on the heels of the success of the Kia EV6, the company is in the middle of launching the new SUV-sized EV9 — and has already announced the next-generation EV5. But on top of that, the company has also announced concept versions of its next next-generation electric cars — including what could turn out to be the cheapest EV of them all: the EV3.
The Kia EV line seems to follow the rule of lower numbers indicating a lower price — and if so, the EV3 will end up being the cheapest electric car Kia has released to date. That, however, thankfully doesn’t mean that the EV3 will be a low-end car — it just means that Kia may be pushing the boundaries on electric car pricing.
Curious about the Kia EV3? Here’s everything we know about the upcoming car so far.
The Kia EV3 will seemingly follow the same overall design language of other Kia electric cars. Kia has revealed a concept version of the car, and it seems like it will sport the same boxy look as the new Kia EV9, but in a much smaller body. Kia still markets the car as a “small SUV,” however don’t expect to get the same roominess as the likes of the Kia EV9. There are two rows of seats, but even the second row of seats won’t quite offer the same level of room as some other electric cars.
The concept version of the EV3 offers rear-hinged back doors, which means that the front and rear doors will open outwards. That said, this seems like a feature that won’t end up on the production version of the car. Kia often sticks relatively close to the exterior design of its concept cars when it reaches the production phase, but some features inevitably don’t make the cut.
On the front of the car, you’ll get what is now a typical Kia look, with the slim headlights that curve around the sides of the front of the car and the Kia logo emblazoned on the hood. The trunk is slightly curved again, with tall rear taillights that stretch down the back. It’s good look, and follows Kia’s overall design, making for a more consistent lineup.
The interior of the Kia EV3 offers a bright and modern look, with a single large screen that stretches along the front of the car and few physical controls to speak of. It looks similar to Kia’s other concept electric cars — though, like them, it’s likely that the production model will look a little more conventional, with a dual display at the front and a few more actual physical controls.
Kia has yet to announce any details about the pricing of the EV3 — however we can speculate. If the company follows the trend of lower-numbered cars in the lineup being cheaper, then the EV3 will be its cheapest electric car so far. Hopefully, that will put the base model of the car somewhere in the $30,000 to $35,000 range — though it’s entirely possible that the car will start closer to $40,000. We’ll have to wait and see how much it actually costs.
Kia has yet to make any announcements related to the release date of the EV3, but the fact that it has a concept version of the car ready is a good sign. The concept EV9 was revealed around two years before the production model went on sale, and it’s likely to be a similar story for the EV3. That means that we won’t see the EV3 in the real world until the end of 2025. That, again, is pure speculation.
Because Kia has only revealed a concept version of the EV3, it hasn’t announced what we can expect from the drivetrain and colors of the car. If the base model is truly inexpensive, it’s likely that it’ll be a single-motor car, with options for dual-motor configurations. It’s also likely that the car will come with different battery sizes, allowing users to get either standard-range and long-range models. Color selection is anyone’s guess, however the concept version of the car was revealed in a nice tan color.
Kia’s higher-end cars have been built on an 800-volt architecture, however ,it looks like its lower-end cars won’t be quite as powerful. Kia has announced that the EV5 will be built on a 400-volt architecture, leading us to assume that the EV3 will be too. This means that the car won’t be able to charge quite as fast as the EV6 and EV9, and will support a maximum charging speed of around 250 kilowatts. That’s still relatively quick, but not as quick as the 350kW-equipped EV6.
It’s anyone’s guess as to the range of the EV3, but hopefully, the car will offer at least 300 miles of range, with options for higher-range models.
One of the benefits of electric cars is their immediate throttle response, and the Kia EV3 will get that too. If, however, the EV3 is designed as a budget car, it may not be quite as zippy as the EV6. A single-motor configuration will hopefully get from 0 to 60 miles per hour in around 6 or 7 seconds, with a dual-motor configuration getting there in 4 or 5 seconds. We’ll have to wait to find out more details about the EV3’s drivetrain, though.
The EV3 will likely boast many of the tech features that have become synonymous with electric cars, though. We expect the same dual display setup as other Kia cars, with support for systems like Apple CarPlay, hopefully with a wireless connection. Other features will include adaptive cruise control, with lane-centering, blind spot monitoring, and more. Kia is working on improving its infotainment system, and by 2025, it will hopefully be well-designed and very easy to navigate.
Hyundai Motor Group is building a plant in the U.S. to be able to manufacture electric cars here and to offer the federal EV tax credit. This should culminate in the EV9 being built in the U.S. by the end of next year. However, it’s completely unclear if the plant will eventually be tooled for the EV3 too. If so, the car may qualify for a federal EV tax credit, which will make it easier for customers to buy the car in the U.S. It’s possible that the EV3 won’t even be sold in the U.S. though, or that it will be imported if it is.
There are a number of things we hope to see from the EV3. Namely, we’re hoping that battery tech will have improved enough by release for even the base model of the car to get 300 miles of range or more. We’re also hoping that it will indeed be built in the U.S., allowing customers in the U.S. to take advantage of the EV tax credit — if it still exists by the time the car is released.
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