Kia Hints At Expanded Soul EV Availability In U.S. – Coming To Atlanta By End Of April
There’s a production bottleneck holding up plans for an expanded U.S. rollout of the Kia Soul EV, but once that’s solved, the electric Soul will be offered in additional U.S. states.
Kia’s EV Product Manager, Steve Kosowski, told ChargedEVs:
“The issue is actually getting enough cars. As soon as we can get the supply, we’re going to start selling the car outside of California. What we don’t want to do is starve our California dealers after they’ve already invested in chargers and tools and training. The Soul EV is the first electric car we’ve sold outside of Korea. So, we want to make sure that the quality is there, that the suppliers and the distributors and the dealers and everybody in the whole chain is ready and there are no problems.”
According to Kia, annual Soul EV production is in the 5,000-unit range at this point in time. That’s a low figure that will need to be dialed up before Kia commits to offering the electric Soul more widely in the U.S.
Orth Hedrick, Kia’s VP of Product Planning, admits that the automakers was “kind of shocked at how well the Soul EV was received.”
It sounds as though Kia didn’t plan for the electric Soul to be a success so quickly, but now that Kia is aware that the demand is there, the automaker is ready to step up its efforts.
Which new U.S. markets will get the Soul EV? We’re not entirely sure, but we hear that the electric Soul will be available in the Atlanta Metro before the end of next month.
Kia is expected to reveal its rollout plans in April, perhaps at the 2015 New York Auto Show.