Kia has made immeasurable progress over the last 15 years, but over the last 5 years, the manufacturer has started looking at changing its image yet again. This Korean automaker is now looking to shift perspectives about itself as it wants to be perceived as a more premium automaker, with the new EV6 being clear indication of that.
Well, the Stinger, which was sold globally and the K9, which wasn’t, did also announce the same premium ambitions, but the EV6 takes things further. It rides on one of the world’s most advanced electric vehicle platforms, allowing it to charge at remarkable rates, plus it’s also packed with all the pieces of technology you’d expect to find on the best and most modern cars.
It also drives extremely well, is spacious and remarkably well built and thought out. Kia clearly was not content to just offer EVs in its lineup - it wanted its EVs to be class leading and take the fight to the very best models on the market, most of which come from luxury automakers and Tesla.
The EV6 is a rival for models like the Volkswagen ID.4, Ford Mustang Mach-E or the Tesla Model Y, although the latter still outperforms the Kia in many areas and remains the rival to beat in the segment.
It is worth mentioning that because Kia opted to give the EV6 a sportier feel, the fact that they also wanted it to be more of a luxury car is not so apparent. If you want a more overt luxurious feeling, you can check out the Hyundai Ioniq 5 which is mechanically related, but feels even better to be aboard of.
Where the EV6 is definitely class-leading is in the way it handles. I got to drive a rear-wheel drive example with the big battery pack and I was blown away by how good it is around corners. This is easily one of the best electric cars I’ve ever thrown into a corner, even though it’s quite a big and heavy car - it seems to be able to pull that Porsche or BMW trick of being able to hide the mass and feel really tossable, which is very high praise for an electric Kia.
Range was also quite impressive, given the fact that I drove the vehicle in the dead of winter and I mostly just tried to have fun with it, not go for as long as possible on one charge. The range meter predicted the vehicle could do around 400 km with a full battery with outside temperatures hovering around freezing point.
My view of Kia had dramatically improved over the last few years, particularly after I drove a Stinger for the first time. Now, though, with the EV6, the Korean automaker is turning. yet another page in its history. In fact, the Stinger will not get a direct replacement as Kia sees the EV6 as its electric successor, even though it’s much more than that.