Not to be outdone by corporate siblings Hyundai and Genesis, which have announced plans to launch 17 electric, or at least electrified, vehicles combined by 2030, Kia has claimed it will have 14 EVs (or, again, vehicles that at least have some electrification) by 2027.
Including two pickup trucks.
It’s important to note the distinction between EVS — those that have an all-electric powertrain — and “electrified” vehicles, which have some sort of electrification but aren’t totally electric. Hybrids and plug-in hybrids, essentially. This is both to avoid falling for overly optimistic marketing speak — OEMs sometimes seem to conflate “EVs” with “electrified” in order to garner green cred — and because Kia’s plans include what appears to be a pure EV truck and a truck for emerging markets that may use internal-combustion power to some extent.
We’ll also pause here to remind you that all these announcements about EV plans should be taken with a grain of salt. It’s easy to say you’re going to do something, and much harder to actually do it, especially when some factors are beyond your control.
All that aside, Kia’s specific plans, as reported by Motor1, start with production of the all-electric truck in 2024, the same year an EV mid-size SUV will also go into production. Small and mid-size EVs are planned for Europe the following year, with entry-level and mid-size EVs planned for the Indian market. Meanwhile, mid-size EVs will be going on sale in China even earlier, for the 2023 model year.
This all follows the planned introduction of a production version of the Kia K9 Concept (shown at LA in 2021) for next year. That large EV SUV will have a range of 300 to 336 miles, over-the-air updates, and the ability for consumers to purchase features after they’ve taken delivery, either via a one-time payment or a subscription plan.
According to Motor1, Kia wants to sell about 1.2 million EVs by 2030, and it’s working to increase battery supply and battery density while reducing battery manufacturing costs as part of the overall strategy.
The ultimate goal appears to be sales of four million units a year, with half or more being EV, or at least electrified.
Again, all such statements should be taken with at least a pinch of salt, no matter how serious the automaker seems or how capable they are of achieving the goal. That said, it’s not impossible.
Time will tell. One thing is for sure — the EV truck market will soon be quite crowded if Kia sticks to this timetable.
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