How Kia’s upcoming EV3 will set new standards in compact EVs

Kia recently revealed full details of its new EV3 fully electric compact SUV. Drawing on Kia’s advanced technology and customer-focused values of the brand’s large, multi-award-winning EV9 flagship SUV, the EV3 carves out its own identity, bringing a unique, immersive experience to the compact EV SUV segment. 

“By providing groundbreaking design, an industry-leading electric drivetrain, and practical, innovative lifestyle solutions, the EV3 aims to extend Kia’s exceptional EV SUV experience to a wider audience. With a WLTP driving range of up to 600km and fast-charging capability, the EV3 addresses common concerns about electric vehicles. It will reassure those who may have been hesitant to make the switch to electric mobility and will lead the mass adoption of EVs,” said Ho Sung Song, President and CEO at Kia.

Exterior design: A bold and progressive statement 

Kia’s ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy was central to the formation of the Kia EV3’s progressive, dynamic, and dramatic design. The philosophy’s influence seamlessly combines the EV3’s dynamic aesthetics with thoughtful functionality.

The EV3 exudes a highly assertive presence. At the front, vertical headlamps positioned at the extreme ends contribute to the creation of a wide, ultra-confident stance. A new interpretation of Kia’s iconic Tiger Face design incorporates the brand’s latest Star Map signature lighting concept. Arranged vertically, the Daytime Running Lights (DRLs) further emphasize the Tiger Face design to project a highly confident character. 

In profile, the EV3 projects an aura of exceptional strength, combined with a powerful impression of agility and dynamism. The long, sloping, sleek roofline transitions into a hatchback-style tailgate. 

The rear aspect completes the EV3’s purposeful stance. The thick black trim line emphasizing the connection between the SUV’s sturdy C-pillar design and the dynamic roofline further enhances the vehicle’s sense of strength. The simplified, geometric rear lamp design integrates with the rear glass, framing a futuristic tailgate design with a wide, sleek appearance.

Interior design: Nature-inspired aesthetic to enhance wellbeing

The EV3’s interior offers a spacious cabin that comfortably accommodates five people. A center console incorporates a sliding table and storage area. The lower area stores drinks, snacks, and even small backpacks, while personal electronic items such as laptops and tablets can be placed on the table when the vehicle is stopped.

With a 25-liter frunk and a 460-liter rear load capacity, the EV3 offers the largest luggage space in its class. The adjustable two-tier luggage board provides over 140mm of load height flexibility, making it practical for activities like camping trips.

A near-30-inch widescreen display – including a 12.3” cluster, a 5” AC panel, and another 12.3” AVN display – incorporates seamless touch operation of the climate control functionality and provides clear graphics and intuitive information to the driver. The screen also extends to the center of the dashboard, giving the front passenger access to entertainment and navigation features.

Many of the EV3’s functions, including drive mode, cruise control, entertainment, and navigation, can be accessed and controlled by a simple touch of the steering wheel buttons. A row of buttons below the central screen intuitively operates various functions like mapping, media, and vehicle system configuration. 

As with every new Kia, the EV3 incorporates various sustainable items. Recycled fabric is applied to the dashboard and door trims to create an intimate home-like ambience. Polyethylene terephthalate (PET), one of the most easily recycled plastics in the world, features in numerous areas of the interior, including the seats, headliner, door armrests, garnish, floor mats, and luggage board.

Electric drivetrain: Exemplary range and ultra-fast charging

The EV3 measures 4,300mm long, 1,850mm wide, 1,560mm high and has a wheelbase of 2,680mm. It features a state-of-the-art front-wheel drive electric powertrain based on the Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), utilizing Kia’s fourth-generation battery technology. The EV3 Standard model is offered exclusively with a 58.3kWh battery, while the EV3 Long Range variant is fitted with an 81.4kWh battery.

Both models utilize a 150kW/283Nm electric motor, which enables a best 0-100km/h acceleration time of 7.5 seconds. The EV3’s maximum speed is 170km/h. 

The EV3 Long Range provides an estimated range of up to 600km (WLTP), giving those taking their first foray into electric mobility complete confidence to tackle long journeys. When the EV3’s battery needs recharging, occupants can relax in the comfort of the living space-like interior as Kia’s advanced Vehicle Charging Management System enables the battery to charge from 10-80 percent in just 31 minutes.

Large electric SUV technology and safety in the compact segment

Kia has equipped the EV3 with ultra-advanced safety, driving, convenience and charging features usually reserved for large EVs. The vehicle’s Advanced Driving Assistance Systems (ADAS) technology includes eDTVC Electric Dynamic Torque Vectoring Control to ensure the EV3 transfers its power to the road smoothly and stably. Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Highway Driving Assist, and Reverse Parking Collision-Avoidance Assist provide additional support and reassurance for drivers, whether on long or short journeys. 

Kia’s Remote Smart Parking Assist enables owners to maneuver the EV3 confidently and safely into and out of tight spaces without the driver having to sit in the vehicle. 

The EV3 is the first model to benefit from Kia’s new i-Pedal 3.0 regenerative braking technology, which allows the driver to adjust the level of regenerative braking according to their preference, enabling one-pedal driving. This maximizes energy efficiency and noticeably reduces fatigue on long drives, enabling the vehicle to travel further on a single charge and making the journey more engaging, enjoyable, and comfortable. 

With the EV3, Kia is the first manufacturer to bring Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) charging to the compact EV SUV segment, giving occupants the freedom and flexibility to power external devices such as laptops, small fridges, coffee machines or hairdryers. Kia’s Digital Key 2.0 enables customers to avoid the hassle of carrying around physical keys by unlocking and starting the EV3 using only their smartphone or smartwatch. They can also conveniently share the EV3’s digital key with friends and family. 

Delivering new levels of innovative technology and digital connectivity

Kia has equipped the EV3 with a holistic suite of connectivity and entertainment features, providing various streamable content through its Premium Streaming service. Kia also offers arcade games, allowing occupants to enjoy in-car gaming. The immersive experience is further enhanced by the Harman Kardon home cinema-like audio system.

The EV3 is the first EV model to feature Kia’s AI Assistant technology, which provides customers with new and innovative ways to interact with and control the vehicle’s features directly and intuitively, enhancing convenience and optimizing productivity during their time in the vehicle. Kia will soon commence the rollout of these features across other EV models, starting with the EV3.  

The EV3 will debut first in Korea this July, followed by Europe in the second half of the year, with launches in other regions after the European market entry.

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