Thank you to Geoff Frazer from The Belfast Telegraph who took the all-new Kia EV6 for a thorough test drive and provided us with this review.
"Kia is on the charge at the moment and have come a long way from when they first landed in the UK market 30 years ago with a re-packaged Mazda 121 they called the Pride.
Their EV6 is the Korean manufacturer’s first electric vehicle to sit on a dedicated electric platform and it’s great - so great in fact that it may push you towards battery power more quickly than you think.
It uses the same basic platform you’ll find under the impressive Hyundai Ioniq 5, but this car is so much sportier - and a great deal sexier to boot.
Because it’s built from the ground up, it delivers more in terms of practicality and space and provides a very refined powertrain and equally impressive handling.
With its ‘concept’ looks and long, athletic lines this is a truly gorgeous family car with an elegant full-width rear light bar and intricate daytime running lights at the front.
It’s not all style over substance, however, and the specially-designed front lip of the car actually channels air through and underneath the EV6’s flat floor, which helps it cut through the air more easily and be more energy efficient.
Kia is continually striving to improve the quality of its interiors and that fact has never been so obvious as when you look inside the EV6.
It may not be quite up to Audi standards yet, but everything feels solid and is well screwed together. You genuinely feel like you’re sitting inside a plush cockpit thanks to supportive seats and a static centre console.
The dash materials are made from recycled plastic bottles and there are loads of handy storage touches too.
There’s decent space in the back for three adults and the boot manages 490-litres with the back seats in place and 1,300 with them folded.
It’s not massive, but it is enough for most families plus the 20-litre frunk for small items under the front clamshell is definitely something that I’d regularly use.
At the minute you’ve got two powertrains to choose from: a rear-wheel-drive version with 226bhp (which I tested), and an all-wheel-drive variant with a hefty 321bhp on tap. Whichever one you opt for, you’re getting the same 77.4kWh battery.
Underneath this rear-driven EV6 is a single electric motor with 226bhp and 350Nm of instantly available torque which will see the car hit 60mph in just over seven seconds and give you a top speed of 114mph.
It has a claimed range of 328 miles and the capacity to be charged at speeds of up to 350kW. Find one of those elusive ultra-rapid chargers and a 10 per cent to 80 per cent charge takes just 18 minutes.
Hook it up to an 11kW home charger and a full top-up of the batteries from flat should take around seven-and-a-half hours.
There’s also the option to add a heat pump. A £900 optional extra, this will help to get the most range out of the batteries during the our many chilly days in Northern Ireland.
Of course if 325hp isn’t enough, you can wait until later this year when the new EV6 GT arrives.
It’ll come exclusively with dual electric motors producing 585hp, 21-inch alloy wheels, more supportive sports seats and adaptive suspension.
It will embarrass most Porsches when you race off from the traffic lights but at nearly £60k you’ll need to dig deep to buy one.
The EV6 sits in between a full-fat SUV and a crossover but out on the road it handles superbly.
The electric powertrain brings a predictably instantaneous throttle response but where it differs from many competitors is its lightness in the bends.
It’s knocking on the door of two tonnes so, like me, this car is no lightweight. Unlike me, however, it still manages to be agile and exciting in the corners.
Three different drive modes – Eco, Normal, and Sport – can be chosen. In simple terms, the modes change the weighting of the accelerator pedal, effectively encouraging the driver to make smoother and gentler inputs.
Six regenerative braking levels are offered, ranging from zero – which allows the EV6 to coast freely – to a mode that allows one pedal driving, the car slowing to a gentle halt the moment you lift off, and an auto mode. Drivers can switch between modes via paddles on the steering wheel.
The ride is a little firm at lower speeds but it’s never uncomfortable and with a high level of driver engagement you will always have a smile on your face as you race silently along any B road.
As with so many Kia models, the EV6 is packed with standard equipment. They all get a great 12.3-inch infotainment system. It’s curved and comes complete with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, it's fairly easy to use and simple to navigate too.
Other standard features include LED headlights, vegan leather upholstery, heated front seats and steering wheel, air-con, parking sensors and lots of driver assistance systems.
If you upgrade to the GT-Line, you get different 19-inch alloys, electric seats with folding ‘relaxation’ option and a vehicle-to-load plug (you can, in theory, charge another electric car, or even use a microwave). GT-Line S adds 20-inch wheels and more fancy stuff like a Meridien stereo, more sensors, the augmented reality head-up display, a panoramic sunroof and power tailgate.
The full-fat GT gets bucket seats and electronically controlled suspension, 21 inch wheels and a limited slip differential for sporty driving.
My wife and I have been thinking about buying an electric car this year but this is the first vehicle that has won us over.
The EV6 genuinely looks and feels impressive. It’s dramatically modern, has a roomy, well-finished interior, decent range and excellent charging speed.
More importantly for me though, it's genuinely engaging to drive, with great steering, a confident chassis, and good performance.
Prices for the EV6 start from just under £41,000. This puts it squarely up against many EV competitors, but given its undoubted abilities, the EV6 would be my choice at the minute."