Kia plans a full lineup of electric vehicles covering a wide range of market segments, especially crossovers and SUVs of all sizes.
The Korean automaker has pledged to have 15 electric models in its global lineup by the end of 2027, including nine models badged EV1 to EV9, according to recent trademark applications filed around the world.
Kia has unveiled three of the nine EV-badged models so far – the EV6, EV9, and more recently, the EV5. More are on the way, and a set of spy shots from late August suggest a subcompact crossover SUV smaller than the EV5 is next on Kia's list of EV launches.
The name of the upcoming model remains unknown for now – our colleagues from Motor1.com Italy referred to it as the EV3 – as does its full design.
However, Motor1.com's rendering artist imagined Kia's compact electric crossover based on the spy shots, which offer clues that the EV3 features the same design language as the EV9 three-row large SUV and the EV5 compact SUV. The result is pretty spectacular and easy on the eye, with the vehicle looking like a downsized version of the EV9.
Gallery: Kia EV3 Rendering by Motor1.com
The boxy body features muscular and angular body surfaces, short overhangs, and an upright glasshouse. Design highlights include T-shaped headlights, a sporty front bumper with gloss black inserts, and a "floating roof" treatment created by the black-painted A-pillars and C-pillars.
The EV3 rides on a striking set of alloy wheels featuring a flat-faced design including three polished metallic strips. The wheels' look also takes inspiration from the Kia EV9 and EV5, although the larger models' wheels feature four strips.
The Kia EV3 is expected to measure between 160 inches and 170 inches in length, which would put it in the same territory as the Jeep Avenger and Peugeot e-2008 as part of Europe's B-segment of crossovers.
Given its size and boxy looks, the EV3 is expected to act as an indirect successor to the Soul EV, according to Autocar, targeting mainly European markets. There's speculation that it may be built at Kia's plant in Slovakia, but that is unconfirmed for now.
Under the skin, the Kia EV3 will feature either the existing E-GMP modular platform or the next-generation eM platform expected in 2025. The eM architecture will underpin EVs across all segments, providing a 50-percent improvement in driving range compared to current EVs, as well as supporting Level 3 or higher autonomous tech and OTA software update features.
If the Kia EV3 is indeed adopting the eM platform, it means it would offer a driving range in excess of 400 miles when it launches sometime in 2025 after a late-2024 unveiling.