3 Lessons the Kia EV9 Can Learn from the Kia EV6
Kia’s EV lineup is expanding with the inclusion of the all-new Kia EV9 electric SUV. The new crossover SUV has some big shoes to fill after the success of the EV6. If Kia has learned anything from its previous EV SUV, it’s that buyers want user-friendly infotainment, lots of cargo space, and a quality build for the relatively high retail price.
Overview of the Kia EV9 electric SUV
The 2024 Kia EV9 is a three-row all-electric crossover SUV that is midsized, meaning it’s about the size of the gas-powered Telluride. It is the first Kia EV of its kind and starts at a price of $54,900.
What do you get in a Kia EV SUV? According to Kia Media, the EV9 has a permanent magnet synchronous electric motor (PMSM). The RWD standard option comes with a 76.1-kWh battery with 215 HP. There is the option to upgrade to a 99.8-kWh battery to increase the SUV’s range to 300 miles. The AWD models have a dual motor configuration with 379 HP and 516 lb-ft of torque. There are four drive modes: Eco, Normal, Sport, and My Mode.
In the AWD models, the 2024 Kia EV9 can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds. It has 7.8 inches of ground clearance and the power to tow 5,000 lbs. Kia has put the power and speed of EV vehicles in its EV9 and put it in an attractive package that has quick-charging and long-range options. Buyers can expect to get up to 80% charge with DC chargers in 24 minutes. The vehicle includes a heat pump to preserve range in cold weather conditions.
The interior of the Kia EV9 is EV luxury at its finest, with multi-camera views, a horizontally-elongated infotainment screen and driver display, and plenty of storage. With room for up to seven and plenty of cargo space, this SUV offers the premium features that can only be found in an SUV package: off-road capability, on-road performance, storage space, and comfort. It’s the total package.
The success of the Kia EV6
Kia’s EV6 sport crossover has been a huge success for the automaker, but it did struggle in lieu of economic conditions and range anxiety in the EV world. The EV6 was awarded the title of 2023 World Performance Car by the World Car Awards. The two-row EV6 is smaller than the EV9, but it’s obvious that the EV6 was the muse for Kia’s larger crossover SUV.
Performance is a key selling point of the EV6, which has a starting price of $42,600. The Kia EV6 comes in RWD and AWD models. The AWD EV6 can deliver 446 lb-ft of torque and accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds.
The EV6 also has a heat pump to extend battery life in cool weather, and it has the luxury options Kia also makes available in its newer EV9. If the Kia EV9 electric SUV can learn anything from the EV6, it’s to stay the course.
Pricing, infotainment, and cargo capacity
The starting price of the Kia EV9 is $12,300 more than the EV6. This makes sense, as the vehicle holds more cargo and more passengers than its smaller counterpart. The higher price is met with a quality build that buyers already recognize in the EV6, so they are able to see the increased value.
The infotainment system is also simplified and intuitive in the EV9, something all drivers appreciate. Yet, it still has the panoramic screens that make it user-friendly and modern.
Finally, the cargo capacity in the EV9 is 20 cubic feet, or up to 82 cubic feet, with the second and third rows folded down. This is what Kia owners want in their SUVs. The EV6 has up to 50.2 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seat folded down, and Kia knows that more is better.
Both EV SUVs have the potential to be big sellers in their market segment, but a struggling economy and the anxiety surrounding all-electric vehicles could prove challenging for Kia’s continued sales.