Kia, Hyundai’s sister company, has updated its mid-to-long-term business plan to include more hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles by 2023, all while keeping its sights set on expanding the number of all-electric models.

This way, Kia hopes to become a leading EV brand globally by selling a total of 4.3 million cars in 2030–an increase of 34.4% compared to the brand’s 2024 goal of 3.2 million units. Out of the 4.4 million cars to be sold in 2030, Kia wants 1.6 million of them (37%) to be all-electric (EV) models.

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Kia boosts its HEV and PHEV game to stay ahead of the curve

Although its all-electric vehicle rollout is unchanged, Kia announced that it will boost the production of hybrid and plug-in hybrid models by 2030 so that it can stay ahead of a potential decrease in EV demand.

Electrified cars (hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and all-electric) will represent 58% of the total volume (2.48 million cars.) Sales of hybrids and plug-in hybrids are expected to reach 882,000 units in 2023, a 3% increase from last year’s target. This is the main difference compared to what the company announced previously, and it means that fewer combustion-only vehicles will roll off the marque’s assembly lines.

That said, simple math points out that 42% of the company’s output in 2030 will be represented by combustion-only models, even though Kia did not specify this figure in its official report.

Today, Hyundai’s sister brand has a total of six hybrid and plug-in hybrid models on sale in the United States: the Niro, Sportage, and Sorento, which are available with both powertrain options. In 2026, the automaker wants to increase the number of hybrid models available on the global stage to eight, and then to nine in 2028.

This way, the South Korean car manufacturer hopes to keep its head above a potentially lower EV demand caused by “weaker global economic growth, reduction of EV subsidies, and slower adaption of charging infrastructure.”

Gallery: Kia EV3 Debut In South Korea

Compared to Ford, which recently delayed the launch of two all-electric models to focus on hybrid models, Kia's EV plans remain unchanged, with the EV2, EV3, EV4, and EV5 battery-powered models scheduled to go into production in the next few years. In 2024, the Kia EV3 small electric crossover will be the first from the group to go on sale, followed by a facelifted EV6. The combustion-powered K8 sedan and Sportage crossover will also be updated this year.

Furthermore, Kia wants to enhance its flexibility by deploying two region-specific EVs, including the Carens EV for the Indian market.

Gallery: Kia Investor Day 2024

To better compete with Chinese cars, the Korean automaker wants to increase the number of models that are capable of receiving over-the-air (OTA) software updates to 18, as well as installing advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) to more cars–63% of models by 2026.

Two purpose-built vehicles (PBVs), the PV5 and PV7, are also expected to create a new income source, with Kia estimating that it will sell 250,000 of them in 2030–150,00 PV5s and 100,000 PV7s.

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