Kia is doubling down on electrification. As part of a wider strategy from the whole Hyundai Motor Group, Kia will transition to focus more on electrified powertrains and introduce 11 EVs by 2025. Dubbed Plan S, Kia’s initiative starts this year with the arrival of its first dedicated EV model. Code-named CV, this vehicle is reportedly a performance crossover. Here are some more details we know about the Kia CV.
Because of Hyundai Motor Group’s commitment to electrification, all three brands under its umbrella will be using a platform dedicated to EVs. The Kia CV will be one of the first vehicles on that architecture, which is called E-GMP. Featuring a skateboard style layout, cars on the E-GMP platforms will have batteries mounted under the passenger compartment. Single-motor variants will feature an RWD layout with the propulsion system mounted on the rear axle. A second electric motor will be installed in the front axle on dual-motor variants, effectively giving it AWD. Expect the dual-motor models to feature the larger battery options and provide the most potent performance.
In terms of looks, the Kia CV will differ from its sibling, the Hyundai Ioniq 5, by sporting a sleeker, more coupe-like appearance. Remember the Imagine and Futuron concept cars that Kia showed off at the 2019 Geneva auto show and 2019 China International Import Expo Shanghai? Those two vehicles will form the foundations of the CV’s design, meaning it’ll be a low-slung crossover with a fast-descending roofline. Think of it as something similar to the Audi Q5 Sportback but with a slightly smaller footprint and a more carlike appearance.
The Kia CV’s interior design should follow Kia’s emphasis on simplicity and user-friendliness. Don’t expect anything but cutting edge technologies, though. As we’ve seen with recent Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis models, it’ll have massive displays. The CV could get a dual-screen layout similar to the one you find Kia’s flagship full-size sedan, the K900. A 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a touch screen of a similar size will be featured; both may even be housed in a single massive glass panel. The CV could also get Kia’s next-generation driver assistance features and may even be the first to receive level 3 autonomous technologies.
Kia’s first dedicated EV intends to distinguish itself as a sporty, performance-focused model. The CV has been caught testing in different locales including the famous Nurburgring Nordschleife racetrack alongside a variety of models ranging from the Tesla Model 3 to the Toyota Prius Prime. Every prototype has been caught wearing 20-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Continental PremiumContact 6 summer tires measuring 255/45R20s, meaning this will be on the sportier end of the spectrum. That could come at the cost of range but that remains to be seen if Kia can provide a nice balance of fun road manners and long-distance capability.
The CV is scheduled to debut this year and will initiate Kia’s electrification offensive. Two different motor configurations and two battery sizes should be offered along with standard, long-range, and performance derivatives. The latter two should get the larger battery option and could give the Tesla Model Y and Ford Mustang Mach-E a run for their money. In typical Kia fashion, the CV should have a strong value play, meaning it could undercut its competitors by a significant amount while still providing similar or better performance and range.