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By Carsales staff
Kia has continued to blur the lines between concept and reality.
The South Korean car maker officially revealed its next dedicated electric vehicle, the EV5 mid-size SUV, in China recently, showcasing how close the production-ready version is to the original concept car.
The EV5 will be the third model in Kia’s dedicated electric vehicle range, following on from the critically acclaimed EV6 sedan and the soon-to-arrive EV9 large SUV.
It is expected to land in Australian showrooms by mid-2024, offering a battery-powered alternative to its existing Sportage model while mirroring the bold – and boxy – new design language of the EV9 that launches locally before the end of the year.
The design relationship between EV9 and the EV5 continues inside the cabin too where there is a similar dash layout that is dominated by dual 12.3-inch digital screens but enough differences to mark the two models apart.
Where the EV9 features a convenient interpretation on the traditional centre console arrangement that is intended to offer more storage space, the EV5 features little more than an integrated hump between the driver and front passenger seats that seemingly overhangs a storage tray at the base of the dash. It’s almost like a bench seat.
It also has a hinged floating arm rest above it which can fold up between the backrests.
Kia is yet to expand on this particular design feature but we’re sure it won’t be long before we get a full explanation given the EV5 is due to launch in China later this year before entering global markets in the first half of 2024.
“Research by Kia has revealed that millennial households now regard the interior of their EV SUV not just as a place to sit safely and comfortably when travelling from A to B, but as an additional ‘room’ to live their life in,” the company said.
“To meet this challenge, Kia’s interior designers have completely reimagined the vehicle’s interior space.
“Drawing additional inspiration from the recently launched larger EV9 SUV, they have endowed the EV5 with an extensive interior space that is closer in concept and execution to a home lounge than a traditional car cabin.
Kia has yet to confirm full details of the EV5, but it is expected to be based on the established e-GMP architecture that also underpins the EV6 and EV9 (as well as sister models from Hyundai such as the IONIQ 5 and IONIQ 6), which is capable of hosting a range of battery capacities and has the ability to cater for both single and dual-motor configurations.
Chinese homologation data has suggested the volume-selling grades will feature a 160kW/310Nm single-motor powertrain and a BYD-sourced lithium iron phosphate battery.
A dual-motor version is anticipated, and a high-performance GT version could also be in the mix to sit below the corresponding EV6 and EV9 GTs.
More details of the EV5 will be announced in October at the Kia EV Day, where the brand “will expand upon its global vision for electrification”.
Disclaimer: Images supplied by Kia.
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