Hyundai and Genesis announced yesterday plans to introduce 17 fully electric vehicles until the end of the decade. Sister brand Kia is also making a commitment to bolster its EV portfolio by launching two new models per year starting with 2023. Previously, the South Korean brand had planned to introduce 11 cars by 2026.
Leading the way will be the EV9, a large SUV previewed last year by a namesake concept. It’ll be about five meters long and will aim to provide approximately 540 kilometers (336 miles) of range on a single charge. Thanks to fast-charging capabilities, juicing up the battery for just six minutes will provide the vehicle with a range of 62 miles (100 kilometers).
Despite being large and heavy, the EV9’s dual motors will enable a 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) run in five seconds. We also get to learn it will be the first model from Kia to support over-the-air (OTA) updates as well as feature on demand (FoD) services. The latter will allow owners to access functions by paying a subscription or a one-time fee to unlock functions. The EV9 will also be the firm’s first vehicle to benefit from the AutoMode autonomous driving system.
Interestingly, Kia confirms two of the new EVs will be pickups – one riding on a dedicated platform and a cheaper truck likely based on an architecture for combustion-engined cars that will be sold in emerging markets. In addition, an entry-level electric vehicle was confirmed today to arrive within the next five years.
In the long run, Kia wants to reach annual EV sales of 1.2 million by the end of the decade or 30% of its global sales. The vast majority of sales (80%) are projected to come from Europe, China, North America, and Korea where the brand estimates EVs will account for a 45% share of its total sales. Midsize electric SUVs and pickups will be produced in the United States from 2024. Small and medium-sized electric cars will enter production in Europe from 2025.
Also set to hit the assembly line in 2025 will be midsize EVs and an entry-level model in India. Before all of these arrive, Kia will commence production of midsize EVs in China from next year. At the same time, the company is upgrading its battery production output and wants to boost battery energy density by 50% by 2030 while reducing costs by 40%.