Kia, major sponsor for the Melbourne tennis open, has debuted the latest addition to its automotive offerings, the all-electric EV6, at an event ahead of the tournament’s official opening on Monday.
Handing over the keys to 130 vehicles that will be used by officials at the event, the Kia EV6 took centre stage, or rather, centre court, atop a series of 250 aluminum rods that were programmed to “dance” to underline Kia’s commitment to innovation.
Present at the event were tennis champs and Kia ambassadors Dylan Alcott, playing his last wheelchair grand slam in 2022, and Rafael Nadal, who it was reported in October 2021 has received a free EV6 from Kia for his efforts.
As The Driven reported on Tuesday, one of Kia’s EV6 electric vehicles was snapped and shared on social media ahead of the open. Several EV6s have been present in Melbourne for some months as the South Korean carmaker puts them through their paces to be tuned to Australian conditions.
The EV6 will be Kia’s second all-electric vehicles on Australia roads, joining the e-Niro which was originally also supposed to debut at the 2020 tennis open but which was then delayed as the carmaker was forced to prioritise inventory to markets with vehicle emissions legislation.
It also kicks off a mid-to-long-term strategy for BEVs, plug-in hybrids (PHEVs), and hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) to account for 40% of Kia’s total sales by 2030, with an annual sales target of 1.6 million units.
The EV6 is the first of 11 new BEV cars from Kia that will be released by 2026 as Kia sets its sights on a goal to sell 880,000 battery electric vehicles by 2030, which it hopes will make it a top global seller (but which we note falls short of the number of EVs sold by Tesla in 2021 alone by some 50,000).
While the e-Niro is now on the Australia car market with 217 sold in 2021, it will now be upstaged by the EV6, which unlike the electric Niro has been built on a dedicated electric platform.
In fact, the EV6 is more akin to the Hyundai Ioniq 5, as both available are built on Hyundai Motor Group’s e-GMP electric drivetrain platform, and offer 400V/800V electrical architecture which means ultra-fast charging from 10-80% in just 18 minutes (as long as you’re at an ultra-fast charger).
The premium GT variants are designed to excite customers with thrilling driving performance, says Kia, with acceleration from 0 to 100 kilometres per hour in 3.5 seconds and a top speed of 260 kilometres per hour.
While pricing for the EV6 has not yet been revealed by Kia, it will be available in five variants in either rear-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive, with a maximum driving range of 528km (WLTP) for the RWD options, 504km for the dual-motor GT-Line trims and 428km for the range-topping GT-Line S.
For more details and specifications, and the latest new on the Kia EV6, visit our Models page here.
Bridie Schmidt is associate editor for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.