Why Is the Kia EV6 Always the Bridesmaid?

The Kia EV6 seems to check all the right boxes to be one of the best electric SUVs. But it just can’t get there. The Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Mustang Mach-E EV SUVs seem to snag all the awards, and leave this svelte SUV in the No. 2 spot. What’s going on with the stylish, quick, and capable Kia EV6 that always puts it in the bridesmaid spot behind its rivals?

The Kia EV6 continually ranks among the best electric SUVs

A red 2022 Kia EV6 GT sits parked in front of a mountainous terrain.
2022 Kia EV6 GT | Kia

At TrueCar.com, the 2022 EV6 ranks second behind the Hyundai Ioniq 5. The 2022 EV6 at U.S. News also ranks No. 2 right behind the Hyundai Ioniq 5. At Kelly Blue Book, it ranks second behind the Ford Mustang Mach-E. At Consumer Reports, it ranks near the top, but behind the Hyundai and the Ford. It comes in second behind the Ioniq 5, again, on Motor Trend’s list.

It’s interesting to note that the Ioniq 5, the EV6 and the upcoming Kia EV9 all ride on the same platform and use the same batteries and motors. They’re available 58-kWh batteries or 77-kWh batteries packs, and single or dual motor all-wheel-drive packages. The slightly sleeker of these “SUVs,” the Kia, can go 310 miles on a charge, while the slightly stumpier Hyundai can travel 303. The difference is in the inside packaging that sees the Hyundai with a bit more room.

What don’t peoplelike about the Kia EV6?

The EV6 has a lot of positives, not the least of which is its extreme EV styling that turns heads. But it’s not a game changer. Its range, a max of 310 miles, is adequate and in the base trim it only offers just 167 horsepower. It comes standard with a host of driver aids, a large center screen that integrates into a handsome driver’s display, and some cool interior aluminum touches.

Reviewers, like those from Car and Driver, have a lot of praise for the SUV’s driving dynamics. The uber-quick GT-Line versions, which can scoot to 60 miles per hour in about 3.5 seconds, also earn praise for their straight-line performance. While it’s beloved, it just doesn’t earn the praise that the Ford Mach-E does. That EV SUV has won several awards.

Is the Kia EV6 a good buy?

silver 2022 Kia EV6
2022 Kia EV6 | Kia

It’s hard to say if the Kia EV6 is a good buy for you, but its price puts it in the sweet spot among the best electric SUVs. It starts at $41,400, and it is eligible for tax credits and free charging. The Ioniq 5 starts at $39,950. The 2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E starts at $43,895. EV6 comes in several flavors, including base Light, rear-wheel drive Wind, all-wheel drive Wind, and rear- or all-wheel drive GT-Line performance trim, which tops out at $56,400.  

How much cargo space does the EV6 have?

2022 EV6 interior in black and gray
The interior of a Kia EV6 compact sports utility vehicle | Michael Nagle, Getty Images

The interior space in the EV6 may be its Achilles heel. The Kia EV6 holds 54 cubic feet of stuff with the seats down, which makes it slightly more cramped than the larger Mach-E that holds 59.7 cubic feet, and the 59.3 in the Ioniq 5. Again, the EV6 comes close, but it just misses the mark of the Ioniq 5 and the Mach E in one critical SUV category, storage space.

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