A few days ago, I wrote about all the accolades Hyundai and Kia have been getting for their great electric vehicles. The Kia EV9, Kia EV6, Hyundai IONIQ 5, Hyundai IONIQ 5 N, Hyundai IONIQ 6 — they’re all award winners! These are top-notch electric vehicles built on a decade of good EV design and development. But what’s next? What do Hyundai and Kia have planned next to keep the momentum going and win more awards? I’m glad you asked.
There are some modest new versions of existing electric cars that have just been introduced, there are electric flying machines coming next month, and there’s a bit in between those two levels.
Kia Horizon EVs
Kia now has some special “Horizon” edition versions of the EV6 and Niro EV in the UK. In the case of the EV6 Horizon, it sits between the “Air” version and the “GT-Line” versions. In addition to the features of the EV6 Air, the EV6 Horizon comes with:
- Automatic body coloured flush exterior door handles
- Solar glass windscreen
- Dual LED headlights with adaptive driving beam
- Front parking sensors*
- High gloss black door trim
- Driver’s power adjustable memory seat
- Front passenger power seat with two-way electric lumbar support
- Heated outer second row seats
- Wireless mobile phone charger
- Smart power tailgate
- Black artificial leather in the interior
- Premium paint (Midnight Black, Interstellar Grey, or Gravity Blue)
“The EV6 ‘Horizon’ is offered exclusively with a 225bhp rear-wheel drive powertrain, paired with a long-range 77.4kWh battery pack. It’s capable of driving up to 328 miles on a single charge (WLTP combined cycle)**. The EV6 ‘Horizon’ also offers ultra-rapid 800V charging technology, enabling the car to recharge from 10-80 per cent in just 18 minutes*** when plugged into a 350kW charger.” The on-the-road (OTR) price starts at £45,995.
Niro EV Horizon
Similarly, the Niro EV Horizon sits somewhere between the base “2” and the mid-level “3” (but don’t call it a 2½). In addition to what’s included in the base Niro EV, the Niro EV Horizon comes with the following as standard:
- LED headlights
- Front fog lights
- Rear privacy glass
- Electrically folding high gloss door mirrors
- Front parking sensors*
- Rain sensing front wipers
- All-round electric windows with driver’s and front passenger auto up/down
- Black artificial leather upholstery
- Heated front seats and steering wheel
- Driver’s power adjustable seat with aircell type lumbar support
- Wireless mobile phone charger
- Vehicle-to-Load (V2L)
- Blind Spot Collision Avoidance Assist (BCA)
- Highway Driving Assist (HDA1.0)
- Premium paint (Mineral Blue, Interstellar Grey, and Midnight Black)
“Like the rest of the Kia Niro EV line-up, the ‘Horizon’ model is offered with a 64.8kWh battery pack, capable of up to 285 miles on a single charge, according to the WLTP combined cycle**. Paired with a 150kW electric motor sending power to the front wheels, the Niro EV offers efficient running with smooth and spritely performance.”
Kia plans to have 15 different electric vehicle models available around the world in 2027. The Niro EV and EV6 are two of those models. Additional EVs will be part of a new PBV line. …
Kia PBV Vision
At CES 2024 in Las Vegas next month, Kia will be launching its new PBV, or “Platform Beyond Vehicle,” vision and business strategy. This includes more than just vehicles, but it does also include new vehicle models. “Kia PBV is a total mobility solution combining fit-for-purpose EVs with advanced software solutions that will open the door to new businesses and lifestyles,” the company writes.
“Marking its first return to the CES in five years, a series of keynote speakers will expand on the brand’s future PBV business strategies and vision for the future, including dedicated hardware such as Easy Swap and Dynamic Hybrid modularisation technologies, digital solutions developed under the Hyundai Motor Group’s advanced software capabilities, and plans for global partnership integration. …
“The Kia PBV exhibition will feature five concept models, including its first PBV scheduled for mass production starting in 2025, a range of Kia-exclusive PBV technology, and a PBV-dedicated presentation and demonstration highlighting the company’s software-defined vehicle strategy and plans for partnership integration.”
That’s what we know for now about the PBV launch. But Kia will have more on display and launched via the interwebs at CES as well. “The brand’s EV exhibition will introduce Kia’s vision of ‘EVs for All’ by displaying the EV3 and EV4 concept cars alongside the EV9 and EV6 GT, while showcasing the numerous lifestyle benefits customers can enjoy from Kia’s rapidly expanding EV line-up.” I feel like we will have a full EV1–EV9 line (or maybe just EV3–EV9 line) before long.
Hyundai IONIQ Lab Opens in Thailand
Now, switching over to the Hyundai side, Hyundai is expanding its EV network to Thailand, offering the IONIQ 5 there and opening a new IONIQ Lab. “Hyundai Motor Company to lead the electric vehicle (EV) revolution in Thailand with the opening of the IONIQ Lab at True Digital Park in Bangkok,” Hyundai wrote last week. “The arrival of the new facility marks a significant milestone for Hyundai and its award-winning IONIQ 5, showcasing the company’s steadfast commitment to achieving a greener future through sustainable innovation in Thailand and around the world.”
I have to admit — my first thought was that the “Lab” was a place where Hyundai would be designing and developing and improving EVs. It seems that it’s really just a place to showcase/market Hyundai’s EVs. Nonetheless, it’s notable the company is bringing EVs to another big market.
Hyundai eVTOL Concept & Vertiport
Hyundai has its own big announcements planned for CES 2024 in Las Vegas. Its “advanced air mobility” company Supernal is going to unveil a new electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) concept vehicle and vertiport at CES.
“Supernal is building a ‘vertiport’ exhibition in front of the West Hall entrance to the Las Vegas Convention Center where attendees can step inside the future of transportation to:
- See the company’s vehicle product concept,
- Take a flight simulation through the city of LA,
- Learn about potential flight networks,
- and understand how future ‘mobility hubs’ will create quicker and easier travel journeys.”
Jaiwon Shin, CEO of Supernal and president of Hyundai Motor Group; Ben Diachun, chief technology officer of Supernal; and Luc Donckerwolke, president and chief design officer of Hyundai Motor Group, will be presenting and available for media interviews on January 9. That’s it for now. We’ll learn more on January 9!