As part of its ‘Plan S’ strategy, Kia hopes to sell 1.2 million battery electric vehicles (BEVs) by 2030. Following that goal, Kia Motors unveiled the EV5 Concept at the Kia Chinese EV Day event on March 20, 2023. At the event, which was held in the city of Shanghai, the Korean automaker announced that the new concept will lead to a pure-electric production model later this year, further reinforcing its commitment towards sustainable mobility. That said, here are 5 things you should know about the Kia EV5:
Proper ‘SUV’ alternative to the EV6
Kia will position the EV5 beneath the EV6, aimed at buyers looking for a compact EV with boxy and upright proportions typically associated with SUVs. We expect the EV5 to be shorter than the EV6 crossover, particularly in length. The EV6 has a length of 184.3 inches and a wheelbase of 114.2 inches. However, the EV5 would be taller while sporting a more robust styling with relatively-short front & rear overhangs to heighten that ‘SUV’ appeal. With a deep wheel arch, flared fenders, black body cladding, a flat roofline, and an aerodynamic spoiler, the Kia EV5 will have an aggressive stance.
Unlike the EV6, the Kia EV5 will also feature a larger greenhouse area with thicker rear pillars and a sizeable rear windscreen. A raised ride height and perhaps even an expansive panoramic glass roof are design traits that should lead to an airy cabin while also offering the occupants a better view of the outside world. However, Kia could shorten the wheelbase to match the compact SUV’s segment-related requirements, making it easier to park as well.
Will be sold in the global market, following China
Kia confirmed that the debut of the EV5 in its production-ready avatar will take place later in 2023, starting with the Chinese market first. Autohome reports that the new electric SUV will reach Chinese dealers in November 2023. There is no official timeline for other global markets (including the U.S.), but we expect it to begin arriving at other dealers starting next year.
Gets New Digital Tiger Face and Star Map signature lighting
The front fascia of the Concept EV5 is both tall and heavily sculpted, with a protruding lower bumper that integrates a large central intake with thick silver surrounds for a sporty & rugged appearance. The concept features Kia’s modern take on its conventional ‘Tiger Nose’ grille design, which has now been superseded by the new ‘Digital Tiger Face’ that looks cleaner and more subtle.
Bringing in the requisite glamor quotient to the show car is Kia’s so-called ‘Star Map’ signature lighting feature. Essentially a seamless LED strip, this sleek lighting element is designed to imitate a constellation of stars connected to one another. Expect to see a translation of this feature in the production SUV.
Rides on the E-GMP platform
The Kia EV5 will be based on the Hyundai Motor Group’s (HMG) E-GMP platform, which features a unique multi-charging system. Patented by HMG, this technology should allow Kia’s new EV to be charged using traditional 400-volt or the more modern 800-volt charging solutions, the latter likely supporting DC fast charging up to an impressive 350 kW. If it materializes, this feature would allow the EV5’s batteries to be charged from 10-80% in as little as 18 minutes.
While the larger Kia EV9 will be offered with a 100 kWh battery pack, the Kia EV5 could get a 77.4 kWh unit also found in the EV6. Depending on the market, the EV5 could be available with rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. If equipped with a similar powertrain as the EV6, the EV5 could develop around 320 hp and 446 lb.-ft. of torque, while its EPA-est. range could be between 250-275 miles.
Expected with high-end features
The Kia EV5 will likely be equipped with the Advanced Driver Assistance Safety Systems (ADAS) featured in the EV6. It is expected to come with V2L (Vehicle-to-Load) bidirectional charging, Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA), Highway Driving Assist 2 (HDA 2), and Parking Collision Avoidance – Reverse (PCA-R), as per the Chinese report mentioned earlier. Considering that these technologies are already available in the EV6, the new EV5 SUV should also feature them, at least in select trim levels.