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Kia EV6 In-Depth Review: Specs, Price, Range and More

As the auto industry rapidly pivots towards electrification, traditional brands are racing to launch new battery-powered models and establish themselves as leaders in the EV space. The 2022 Kia EV6 is a prime example of this shift, marking a bold step forward for a brand best known for its value-oriented gas vehicles.

Arriving in early 2022 as Kia‘s first dedicated electric model, the sleekly styled EV6 crossover is built from the ground up to take full advantage of its electric powertrain. It rides on the Hyundai Motor Group‘s advanced Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), which will underpin a range of future EVs from Kia, Hyundai and Genesis.

By distilling a decade of EV development experience into an all-new, purpose-built architecture, Kia has created a compelling entrant in the increasingly crowded EV crossover field. The EV6 impresses with its blend of striking design, engaging driving dynamics, cutting-edge tech features, and an excellent range that tops 300 miles in certain configurations.

Kia EV6 Battery and Charging Specs

At the heart of the EV6‘s advanced electric powertrain is a high-tech lithium-ion battery pack featuring a nickel-cobalt-manganese chemistry. The standard-range pack has a capacity of 58 kWh, while the long-range version upgrades to 77.4 kWh.

EV6 Trim Battery Size Range (mi) 0-60 Time (sec) Horsepower Torque (lb-ft)
Light RWD 58 kWh 232 8.0 167 258
Wind RWD 77.4 kWh 310 7.2 225 258
Wind e-AWD 77.4 kWh 274 5.1 320 446
GT-Line RWD 77.4 kWh 310 7.2 225 258
GT-Line e-AWD 77.4 kWh 274 5.1 320 446
GT (coming) 77.4 kWh TBA < 3.5 576 TBA

The EV6‘s 800V battery and motor architecture allows for impressively fast charging times. When connected to a 350 kW DC fast charger, the 77.4 kWh pack can charge from 10-80% in just 18 minutes, or gain back 70 miles of range in under 5 minutes. That‘s quicker than key rivals like the Tesla Model Y (250 kW max charging speed), Ford Mustang Mach-E (150 kW), and Volkswagen ID.4 (125 kW).

Even the base EV6 Light with the smaller 58 kWh battery supports 800V fast charging, replenishing from 10-80% in a still-quick 25 minutes at a 350 kW charger. All models also support more common 400V DC fast charging at up to 150 kW, as well as Level 2 AC charging at up to 10.9 kW, allowing for an 11 hour recharge time on a 240V home or public charger.

Kia‘s multi-year investment in high-voltage EV architecture is paying off in the EV6, enabling faster charging times and lighter, more compact battery packs compared to the 400V designs used by most current EVs. The E-GMP platform‘s 800V system also allows for more efficient power delivery to the motors, meaning less energy is lost in the form of heat. That helps contribute to the EV6‘s impressive overall efficiency of 117 MPGe combined in RWD form.

EV6 Range and Performance

Thanks to its large battery packs and efficient powertrain, the Kia EV6 offers some of the longest driving ranges in the electric crossover segment. In the Light trim with the smaller 58 kWh battery and a single rear motor producing 167 hp, the EV6 can travel an estimated 232 miles on a full charge.

Moving up to the 77.4 kWh long-range battery boosts total output to 225 hp in the single-motor Wind and GT-Line RWD models, and unleashes 310 miles of driving range – among the best of any EV in its class. For reference, the base Model Y Long Range is rated at 330 miles, the Mustang Mach-E RWD Extended Range at 305 miles, and the ID.4 Pro at 260 miles.

The EV6 is also offered with a dual-motor e-AWD setup in Wind and GT-Line trims, which sacrifices some range in exchange for greater performance. The front and rear motors combine for a total of 320 hp and 446 lb-ft of torque, propelling the EV6 from 0-60 mph in just 5.1 seconds while still achieving a solid 274 miles of range.

But the real performance star of the lineup will be the upcoming EV6 GT, boasting a whopping 576 hp and a targeted 0-60 time of under 3.5 seconds. That would make it one of the quickest production vehicles on the market – electric or otherwise – rivaling the likes of the Porsche Taycan 4S and Tesla Model S Plaid. Expect the GT to command a significant price premium over lesser EV6 models, likely starting in the low-$60,000 range.

Kia EV6 Pricing and Trims

The 2022 EV6 is offered in three main trim levels – Light, Wind and GT-Line – each available in either rear-wheel drive (RWD) or e-AWD dual-motor configurations. Here‘s how pricing breaks down:

Trim Drive Battery MSRP (incl. dest.)
Light RWD 58 kWh $42,115
Wind RWD 77.4 kWh $48,215
Wind e-AWD 77.4 kWh $52,415
GT-Line RWD 77.4 kWh $52,415
GT-Line e-AWD 77.4 kWh $57,115
GT (coming) e-AWD 77.4 kWh TBA

At its $42,115 base price, the Light RWD model comes well-equipped with features like a 12.3-inch curved infotainment display, wireless phone charging, heated front seats, and a full suite of advanced driver assists. Moving up to the Wind adds a power liftgate, ventilated seats, and a premium Meridian audio system, while the GT-Line gets sportier styling inside and out, 20-inch wheels, and an augmented reality head-up display.

It‘s worth noting that the EV6 easily undercuts the base Tesla Model Y ($67,190), and is priced in line with the Mustang Mach-E Select RWD ($43,995) and VW ID.4 Pro ($41,230) while offering a significantly longer range. Factor in the $7,500 federal EV tax credit and potential state and local incentives, and the EV6‘s value proposition becomes even stronger.

Technology and Connected Features

As a cutting-edge EV, the Kia EV6 is packed with advanced technology features aimed at making the ownership experience as seamless and efficient as possible. Central to this is the EV6‘s high-speed onboard charger and vehicle-to-load (V2L) function, which essentially turns the car into a mobile power station capable of running electronics and appliances or even charging another EV.

The EV6‘s Android-powered infotainment system is also a significant step up from Kia‘s previous offerings. Displayed on a high-resolution 12.3-inch touchscreen, the new interface can receive over-the-air software updates to add features and functionality. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are supported, as is a new "connected car" system enabling remote vehicle status monitoring, charging control, and pre-conditioning via a smartphone app.

All EV6 models come standard with an impressive array of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), including forward collision avoidance, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, and more. The available Highway Driving Assist II system can even execute lane changes and adjust speed based on posted limits.

On the safety front, the EV6 has earned top marks from both the NHTSA and IIHS, including a coveted Top Safety Pick+ nod from the latter when equipped with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights. Standard safety equipment includes 7 airbags, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, and rear occupant alert.

Driving Impressions

From behind the wheel, the Kia EV6 immediately impresses with its smooth, silent and effortless acceleration. With its floor-mounted battery pack keeping the center of gravity low, the EV6 corners with poise and control, exhibiting minimal body lean for a 4,500-lb crossover. The steering is crisp and accurate, with a quick 12.0:1 ratio that lends a sporty character.

Despite its engaging handling, the EV6 manages to deliver excellent ride comfort as well, thanks in part to a well-tuned multi-link rear suspension setup. The cabin remains pleasantly quiet at highway speeds, and even the large 20-inch alloy wheels and low-profile tires on the GT-Line don‘t introduce much road noise. Overall refinement is fully on par with premium-brand EVs.

Drivers can tailor the EV6‘s performance via four selectable drive modes – Eco, Normal, Sport and Snow – each adjusting parameters like throttle mapping, steering effort, and stability control. Paddle shifters on the steering wheel let you choose between four levels of regenerative braking, from light to heavy, while a clever "i-Pedal" function enables one-pedal driving.

The EV6‘s relatively long 114.2-inch wheelbase – 4 inches longer than the Model Y‘s – pays dividends in passenger and cargo space. Rear legroom is generous and the flat floor makes three-across seating viable. A deep 24.4 cu-ft cargo well and 60/40-split folding rear seat provide ample flexibility for hauling larger items. A small front trunk offers 2-3 additional cubic feet for storing charging cables.

Kia‘s EV Future

With the EV6 leading the charge, Kia plans to rapidly expand its all-electric offerings in the coming years as it targets 25% of its global sales coming from EVs by 2029. At least 10 new EV models are planned for launch by 2026, spanning multiple vehicle segments. Next up will be the EV9, a large 3-row electric SUV also riding on the E-GMP platform.

Kia and partner brand Hyundai have made significant investments in battery manufacturing and EV charging infrastructure to support this aggressive rollout. The group is aiming for 220 GWh of global battery production capacity by 2030, securing supply for around 2.5 – 3 million EVs annually. Hyundai and Kia are also working with charging network operators like Electrify America and Ionity to grow the availability of 350 kW-capable chargers.

As one of the few automakers with extensive experience mass-producing battery-electric, hybrid and hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles, Kia and the larger Hyundai group are well-positioned to become an EV powerhouse. With the EV6 already making waves and an onslaught of diverse new models on the horizon, expect to see Kia‘s EV market share climb rapidly this decade.

Conclusion

The 2022 Kia EV6 is an impressive achievement that instantly establishes Kia as a major player in the EV space. Boasting head-turning style, cutting-edge technology, robust performance specs, and plenty of range for the money, it‘s poised to win over buyers who may not have previously considered one of the Korean brand‘s vehicles.

The EV6‘s 800V charging capability and vehicle-to-load function are industry-leading features that provide a glimpse at the future of EV technology. At the same time, its refined driving dynamics, premium interior materials, and comprehensive ADAS suite make it a highly-compelling vehicle in the here and now.

Buyers seeking the space and versatility of a compact crossover would be remiss not to consider the EV6 alongside more established rivals like the Model Y, Mach-E and ID.4. With its attractive pricing, excellent efficiency and range, and generous standard features, the Kia makes a strong case for itself as one of the best overall values in the segment.

As EVs continue to proliferate and charging infrastructure expands, the idea of using electricity as a primary means of propulsion is becoming increasingly attractive to mainstream consumers. Forward-thinking vehicles like the Kia EV6 are accelerating this shift by rapidly closing the gap to gas-powered equivalents in terms of practicality, performance and total cost of ownership. In the EV6, Kia has created a car that‘s desirable in its own right – not just as an EV, but as an exceptional automobile, period.