Car review: Kia EV6

Blue Kia EV6 on cobbled street

The EV6 is Kia’s range-topping electric vehicle - Credit: Kia

The Kia EV6 is a tricky car to pigeonhole. Its raised driving position suggests that it’s an SUV, but its side-profile is closer to a high-riding estate car, and there are even hints of a coupé in there with the swept back windscreen and curvaceous haunches.

Confused? The clue to its identity lies in the name, because the EV6 is Kia’s range-topping electric vehicle – and the company’s first car to be designed as an EV from the ground up, rather than adapted from a petrol-powered model.

Red Kia EV6 on roaD

The EV6 is Kia's first car to be designed as an EV from the ground up, rather than adapted from a petrol-powered model - Credit: Adam Warner

UNDER THE BONNET

The EV6 shares its underpinnings with the Hyundai Ioniq 5. There’s a similar choice of two or four-wheel drive configurations, although the Kia offers slightly more power and a fractionally larger battery. It also goes a little further between charging stops, with the two-wheel drive variant offering an impressive WLTP range of 328 miles.

When you do need to plug in, the EV6’s battery supports superfast 800-volt charging. That means, if you can find a 350kW charger, you could top up with enough electricity to cover 62 miles of driving in less than five minutes. Crucially, though, it’s also compatible with older chargers and domestic wallboxes.

Plugged in to a rapid charge EV charging station

The EV6’s battery supports superfast 800-volt charging - Credit: Kia

INSIDE

You sit quite high in the EV6, and there’s bags of interior space, but the steeply sloping windscreen and the high centre console give it an intimate feel. Material quality is easily good enough to justify the £40,945 starting price, while the design is eye-catching and contemporary. Nicely textured surfaces abound, along with extensive use of eco-friendly recycled plastics and vegan leather. Greta would approve.

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There’s limousine-like legroom in the back and a generous 490-litre boot. Other useful features include a vehicle to load (V2L) function, which allows you to power electrical appliances using the car’s battery. This comes with a household-style 3-pin socket and it’s apparently capable of operating a 55-inch television and an air conditioner simultaneously for more than 24 hours.

Interior of EV6 shot through the driver's door window, with dashboard and centre console visible

The steeply sloping windscreen and the high centre console give the EV6 an intimate feel - Credit: Kia

HOW IT DRIVES

Even in single motor rear-wheel drive form, the EV6 is a strong performer, with 0-to-62mph coming up in a brisk 7.3 seconds. Opt for the more powerful four-wheel drive model and that drops to 5.2 seconds – faster than all but the most potent hot hatchbacks.

The handling is neat and tidy, with reasonable alertness and precision. Similarly, the ride is calm, if a touch firm at low speeds, with little in the way of body roll. Straight-line acceleration aside, it’s not an especially involving drive, but it is a competent cruiser with low noise levels and an amusing turn of speed.

Red Kia EV6 in red brick backstreet.

The Kia EV6, a strong contender in the electric family car class - Credit: Kia

FINAL SAY

With its practicality, refinement and performance, the EV6 is a strong contender in the electric family car class. Not only that, but with superfast charging and a real-world range of roughly 300 miles, it makes a very convincing argument over its combustion-engined rivals.

SPEC AND TECH

Price: Kia EV6 GT Line 77.4kWh RWD £43,945, range from £40,945

Powertrain: Single electric motor, 229PS, 77kWh battery, single-speed transmission

Performance: 0 to 62mph in 7.3 seconds

WLTP Range: 328 miles

Efficiency: 3.76mi/kWh (manufacturer’s claim)