We must say, we were a bit surprised to see Kia coming forth with the Niro EV and all-new completely redesigned Soul EV within a similar time frame. This is not to mention sister automaker Hyundai with its Kona Electric.
Battery cells are hard to come by, and these models will all work to compete with one another, no doubt. According to a recent report by Wards Auto, chief operating officer of Kia Motors America Michael Cole shared:
“Soul EV will probably be (coming to the U.S.) next year.”
Wards went on to ask Cole about the obvious Niro sales drop in the United States. Cole replied that "supply issues" are at fault:
“The global demand for electrification, particularly in Europe with their (carbon-dioxide) taxation, (is high). Everyone in Europe has to by 2020 get to this 95 grams (of CO2 per 100 km target). The demand in other regions of the world for Niro product is extremely high."
In summary, Kia must focus on European production and deliveries ahead of the U.S., since the EU has much greater emissions regulations overall. While the company is aware that there's great North American interest in these upcoming EVs, it has become quite a "balancing act" in terms of global supply and demand.
Moreover, the Kia Niro EV is arriving now at U.S. dealerships, so the Soul EV may be able to wait for a bit. However, remember that the Niro EV, Kona Electric, and Soul EV will only be available in U.S. CARB states, so buyers in some 36 states may struggle to get any of these all-electric crossovers.
At the time of this writing, we found just 9 Niro EVs available nationwide on Cars.com, but over 100 Kona Electrics.