Update: ‘Price & Release Date’ section updated with March sales.
The Kia EV6 made its North American debut in Times Square, New York, on May 18, 2021. Kia America showrooms in all 50 states can sell the EV6. After conducting the U.S. debut in New York, Kia flew its next-generation electric car to the Chicago Auto Show in July 2021 for its American motorshow premiere. The video (below) from YouTube channel Raiti’s Rides presents the EV in detail:
Video Source: YouTube/Raiti’s Rides
Our story is a deep dive into the Kia EV6 (including the Kia EV6 GT), covering every aspect of the vehicle.
Kia EV6 Exterior
The EV6 is quite an attention grabber with a design that amalgamates a coupe and an SUV. In April 2021, Naver user pagani0101 had captured an uncamouflaged unit driving through traffic on a busy South Korean road, and from the pictures, the new generation Kia electric car is a head-turner. The Naver user uploaded a video of the same Kia EV6 prowling the streets of South Korea.
The Kia EV6 is the first Kia influenced by its new design philosophy, ‘Opposites United.’ It brings together a coupe’s boldness and dynamism with the striking and athletic appearance of an SUV to form a swanky crossover.
At the front, the Kia EV6 features a low-set sloping hood with the new Kia logo and boomerang-shaped headlamps that have pixel-inspired daytime running lights inspired with ‘moving light pattern.’ The angled windshield glass is one of the many aerodynamics-focused design elements of the electric crossover.
On the sides, the DRLs of the headlamps end at the top of flared wheel arches. A shiny twin strip in the lower body runs almost parallel to the swiftly sloping beltline that has a kick at the C-pillar, and it’s a nice touch over the black rocker panels. The roofline drops in a way that headroom for the rear-seat passengers wouldn’t be compromised much. The flush door handles provide a neat touch to the futuristic crossover. 19- and 20-inch are the available alloy wheel size options in the U.S. market.
At the rear, the Kia EV6 has a dramatically inclined windscreen that makes the silhouette reminiscent of the Jaguar I-Pace. The concave shape of the smooth, uncluttered lower tailgate, which bears the new Kia logo in the center, complements the sportier styling created by that steeply raked glass.
The rear lights are thin C-shaped units connected via a narrow light strip running across the width. A slim satin strip also connects the rear lights at the bottom, underscoring the electric crossover’s elegance.
In the USA, Kia offers a standard-design variant in Light, Wind, and 1st Edition trims and the GT-Line variant at launch. The GT variant, like in all other markets which have already received the EV6, will follow later.
Kia EV6 Interior
The interior of the Kia EV6 is a class above that of traditional Kia models but isn’t radically different. First-time EV buyers would still feel right at home, as the interior is not stripped-out in the name of minimalism. The EV6 has a plethora of high-end technologies unavailable in old Kia electric cars.
A 12.3-inch virtual instrument cluster and a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system are put together to create what looks like a seamless and wide single display. The central display is slightly tilted towards the driver to make viewing and accessing easy. The chic-style black and white two-spoke steering and the garnish on the floor console are among the several fashionable touches inside the cabin.
The screens of the EV6 are blue light-filtered to reduce strain on eyes and fatigue. Kia has equipped the EV6 with an augmented reality head-up display as well, which can project speed and ADAS alerts, lane guidance, vehicle information, and navigation directions. A Merdian sound system featuring 14 speakers with a titanium dome and Intelli Q speed-sensing (adaptive) volume adjustment is another interior highlight.
With UVO link, EV6 customers will be able to enjoy many connected vehicle functions, including but not limited to smart speaker integration (Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker), vehicle notifications on paired Apple/Android smartwatch, and stolen vehicle recovery.
Kia EV6 Safety
The Kia EV6 packs many standard Advanced Driver Assistance Safety Systems. Below are some of the main systems:
- Blind Spot Collision Warning (BCW)
- Lane Keep Assist System (LKA)
- Driver Attention Warning (DAW) with Lead Vehicle Departure Alert (LVDA)
- Lane Keep Assist System (LKA)
- Lane Following Assist System (LFAS)
- Rear Occupant Alert (ROA)
- Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) with car/pedestrian/cyclist detection
- High Beam Assist (HBA)
- Highway Driving Assist (HDA)
- ISLA (Intelligent Speed Limit Assist)
- Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control – Curve with Stop and Go (NSCC-C)
- Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance (RCTA)
Navigation based Smart Cruise Control Ramp (NSCC-R), Auto Evasive Steering Assist, 360-degree camera system (Surround View Monitor), Blind-spot View Monitor (BVM), Highway Driving Assist 2 (HDA 2) with auto lane-changing function, and Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA) are some of the optionally available safety features of the American EV6.
Kia EV6 specifications
Thanks to a wheelbase measuring 114.2 inches, which is equivalent to that of the Kia Telluride, the EV6 offers 102 cubic feet of passenger room. Kia says that the width is comparable to that of the Ford Mustang Mach-E, which is a mid-size SUV, and that its wheelbase and ground clearance are similar to those of the Tesla Model Y, another mid-size SUV.
The Kia EV6 offers 27.7 cubic feet of cargo space, which drivers can increase to 53.5 cubic feet liters by folding down the second-row seats. Moreover, there’s also a front trunk or a frunk with an additional storage space of 20 liters (0.7 cubic feet) in both RWD and AWD configurations of the North American model.
|Dimension||EV6 (Light/Wind/1st Edition)||EV6 GT-line||EV6 GT|
|Length||184.3 in.||184.8 in.||To Be Announced|
|Width||74.0 in.||74.4 in.||To Be Announced|
|Height||60.8 in.||60.8 in.||To Be Announced|
|Wheelbase||114.2 in.||114.2 in.||To Be Announced|
Performance & Range
Customers can choose from multiple powertrain configurations, including two battery pack options, two drivetrain layout choices, and four outputs selections.
The regular EV6 is available in a Standard Range variant with a 58 kWh battery pack and a Long Range variant with a 77.4 kWh battery pack, while the GT-Line variant comes in only the latter. The Standard Range variant uses a 125 kW (167 hp) rear motor. Customers can order the Long Range variant either with a 225 hp rear motor or a combination of individual front and rear motors that provides 320 hp of combined power.
The Kia EV6 GT does 0-60 mph in less than 3.5 seconds, which is dead close to the Porsche Taycan Turbo’s 3.2 seconds and not far from the Taycan Turbo S’ 2.8 seconds. The Kia EV6 GT can go as fast as the fastest Taycan variants, though – 260 km/h or 162 mph. This top speed figure applies to the global model, but we expect the North American model to be similar. Customer deliveries of the high-spec EV6 GT variant in the U.S. begin in late 2022.
|Aspect||EV6 SR RWD||EV6 LR RWD||EV6 LR AWD||EV6 GT LR AWD|
|Battery Pack Capacity||58 kWh||77.4 kWh||77.4 kWh||77.4 kWh|
|Power||125 kW (167 hp)||168 kW (225 hp)||239 kW (320 hp)||430 kW (576 hp)|
|Torque||258 lb.-ft.||258 lb.-ft.||446 lb.-ft.||To Be Announced|
|Range (EPA est.)||232 miles||310 miles||274 miles||To Be Announced|
|Energy Consumption (EPA est.)||29 kWh/100 miles||29 kWh/100 miles||32 kWh/100 miles||To Be Announced|
|Max. Charging Power (AC/DC)||10.9 kW/180 kW||10.9 kW/240 kW||10.9 kW/240 kW||To Be Announced|
|EPA-est. Charging Time (240V)||6.3 hours||8.7 hours||8.4 hours||To Be Announced|
|0-60 mph Acceleration||8.0 seconds||7.2 seconds||5.1 seconds||<3.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||115 mph||115 mph||117 mph||To Be Announced|
|Towing Capacity||No Towing Capability||2,300 lbs||2,300 lbs||To Be Announced|
In long-range EVs, 0-80% and 0-100% charging times often become the deciding factors during purchase than acceleration time or the top speed. Charging parameters hold a significantly higher weightage compared to performance in the mainstream segments. The VW ID.4 and the Nissan Ariya support charging at 400-volt charging points, and the peak power of their DC on-board charger is 125 kW and 130 kW, respectively.
The Kia EV6 offers Porsche Taycan standards of charging parameters, which make charging close to fueling experience, something that’s expected to bring the much-awaited breakout in the EV market.
The multi-charging system of the Kia EV6 supports 400V and 800V DC charging, which works on DC chargers with charging rates as low as 50 kW and as high as 240 kW. 10-80% rapid-charging or ultra-fast-charging takes 18 minutes, and according to Kia, should provide a range of up to 217 miles. In less than five minutes, nearly 70 miles of range can be achieved.
EPA data states that charging the regular EV6’s battery pack at 240V (using a Level 2 charger) takes 6.3 hours in the Standard Range RWD configuration, 8.7 hours in the Long Range RWD configuration, and 8.4 hours in the Long Range AWD configuration. It is yet to release the charging time of the EV6 GT, which Kia plans to sell in only a Long Range AWD configuration.
Autonomous driving capable
The Kia EV6 features autonomous driving capability. Kia has equipped the EV6 with HDA2 (Highway Driving Assist 2) technology, an evolution of the HDA (Highway Driving Assist). HDA provides the comfort of hands-free, autonomous driving on highways. Using information from the navigation system, HDA determines whether the vehicle is on a highway. If it is, it takes over the functions of controlling the steering, acceleration, and deceleration.
HDA 2 uses radars located around the EV6 and helps the driver maintain a set distance and speed from the vehicle ahead. Above a certain speed, which Kia hasn’t disclosed yet, the driver can change the lane with just a click of the indicator stalk. Drivers would need to have their hands on the steering wheel, though.
Another noteworthy driving assistance system the EV6 offers in this aspect is Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA). The driver can allocate the task of parking to the vehicle with this system in both perpendicular and parallel parking situations.
RSPA doesn’t require the driver to be in the vehicle. The system can understand the vehicle’s surroundings using surround-view cameras and ultrasonic sensors and decide the right parking spot for itself. Accelerating, braking, reverse, and steering are automatic.
Price & Release Date
The Kia EV6 is available in the U.S. in a total of five configurations, with prices ranging from USD 40,900 to USD 55,900. It is eligible for the USD 7,500 federal EV tax credit. Kia levies an extra charge of USD 1,215 across the range.
|Trim||Drivetrain Layout||Power||Battery Pack||Price|
|Light||RWD||167 hp||58 kWh||USD 40,900|
|Wind||RWD||225 hp||77.4 kWh||USD 47,000|
|Wind||e-AWD||320 hp||77.4 kWh||USD 50,900|
|GT-Line||RWD||225 hp||77.4 kWh||USD 51,200|
|GT-Line||e-AWD||320 hp||77.4 kWh||USD 55,900|
Kia started deliveries of the EV6 in the U.S. in February 2022. In the first month, it recorded a sales figure of 2,125 units. March was better, with 3,156 units delivered. In total, Kia dispatched 5,281 units of the EV6 to U.S. Kia dealers in the first quarter of 2022 (January-March 2022).
Insane dealer markups
As expected, some dealers are applying insane markups on the MSRP to cash in on the initial hype and short supply. According to a report from CarBuzz, a dealership in California has applied a markup of USD 27,286 on an EV6 with an MSRP of USD 59,945, bringing its final price to USD 87,231. According to KiaEVForums.com forum member voxel, a Florida dealership is levying a USD 15,000 markup across the EV6 range.
Kia EV6 First Edition
Kia started accepting EV6 reservations in the USA with a First Edition limited to 1,500 units on June 3, 2021. However, an unprecedented surge of traffic on the reservation website created technical difficulties. On June 8, 2021, the company re-opened pre-orders, and the same day, it completed receiving all 1,500 pre-orders.
The Kia EV6 First Edition, in addition to promising priority deliveries, offered customers a chance to specify their unit in an exclusive Urban Yellow exterior color. First Edition designation and numbered interior badge are two more distinctive features.
The First Edition offered a unique opportunity to EV6 buyers to specify their unit in the Steel Gray Matte color. There was an additional exterior color option for the special edition model, called Glacier. The units configured in Glacier will have dark green seats, and the other units will feature black seats. The Long-Range 77.4 kWh battery and 320 hp/446 lb.-ft. dual-motor powertrain comes standard in the EV6 First Edition.
Kia EV6 First Edition features
- Exclusive Urban Yellow exterior color option
- Exclusive dark green seat color option
- Illuminated door sills with “First Edition” designation
- Numbered interior badge highlighting the production count
- 20-inch wheels
- 14-speaker Meridian audio system
Kia offered a free gift to customers who reserved the EV6 First Edition. There was a choice of three gifts: an EV home charger, a 1000 kWh credit within a national charging network, or an Apple Watch. More than 81% of the reservers chose the EV home charger. Kia has priced the EV6 First Edition in the U.S. at USD 58,500.
Video Source: youtube.com/Kia America
EV6 in Canada
The Kia EV6 will arrive in Canada this spring. Kia offered reservations for a limited number and it sold out within just 25 minutes in 2021. These customers will get a priority delivery this year. Like in other markets, the EV6 GT variant will see a phased launch.
Kia EV6 GT to replace the Stinger GT
The Kia Stinger GT won’t continue in the market for a second generation, and the Kia EV6 GT arriving in showrooms later this year will take its place. Karim Habib, Senior Vice President and Head of Global Design Center told Autocar at the 2021 LA Auto Show that the spirit of Stinger will remain (in the Kia brand) and the EV6 has its genes. The GT variant of the EV6 “has the Stinger in it,” Habib added. That’s not to say the Stinger GT will get withdrawn when the EV6 GT goes on sale. It could remain in showrooms for the foreseeable future.
Kia EV6 FAQs
Which cars are to-be Kia EV6 rivals in the U.S.?
What is the Kia EV6 release date & range?
The Kia EV6 is now on sale in the U.S. The EV6 offers a range (EPA) of 310 miles.
What is the Kia EV6 price?
Prices of the Kia EV6 in the U.S. start at $40,900 and go up to $55,900. The high-spec First Edition was launched at $58,500.
Some images in the story are screen grabs from the official product presentation
Featured Image Source: Chicago Auto Show