The new model serves as an electric alternative to the Kia Sportage with EV9-inspired looks
Kia has taken the stage at the Chengdu Motor Show in China to introduce the highly anticipated EV5, an all-electric compact SUV that is positioned under the EV6 both in pricing and overall dimensions while borrowing the looks of the larger EV9. As expected, while the EV5 will initially launch in China, Kia confirmed it will be available globally with more details to be released during the Kia EV Day in October this year.
As promised by Kia, the styling of the production model is nearly identical to the previewing concept from a few months ago. A closer look reveals that the futuristic wheels are slightly smaller measuring up to 21 inches, the inlets integrated within the sharp-looking LED headlights have been replaced by projector units, while the mirrors have grown and the bumpers received minor tweaks.
More: Kia EV4 Sub-Compact SUV Spied For The First Time With Production-Ready Looks
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Overall, the EV5 looks like the smaller brother of the EV9 flagship, with a more aggressive “tiger face” treatment. Measuring 4,615 mm (181.7 inches) long with a 2,750 mm (108.3 inches) wheelbase, it has a similar footprint to the ICE-powered Kia Sportage and is 135 mm (5.3 inches) shorter than a Tesla Model Y.
The target audience of the Kia EV5 is millennian families which means that practicality was a focus point alongside modern design, comfort, and sustainability. As such, the interior of the SUV was imagined as an “additional room” for millennian households. The lounge atmosphere is enhanced by features like the front passenger seat that expands over the central tunnel, making it look more like a couch. The 64-color ambient lighting with adjustable brightness is in sync with the drive modes and the ADAS alerts.
The sculpted dashboard of the EV5 has a similar layout to the EV9, focused around a single panel with dual displays for the instrument cluster and the infotainment. The four-spoke steering wheel integrates most of the controls, while Kia opted for physical buttons for the A/C. We can also see dual USB-C ports, a wireless charging pad, cupholders, and storage cubbies. The rear bench folds flat while the cargo space features practical partitions and additional under-floor storage.
As with the rest members of the Hyundai/Kia electric family, the EV5 is expected to ride on the E-GMP architecture. The company didn’t announce the specifications of the electric powertrain at this point, saving them for the event in October. Still, thanks to documents from China we already know that the Chinese-spec version of the Kia EV5 will be powered by a single electric motor producing 215 hp (160 kW / 218 PS) and 310 Nm (229 lb-ft) of torque, transmitted to the front wheels. We also know that the SUV will use BYD’s Blade lithium iron phosphate battery pack although its capacity and range have yet to be disclosed. Kia said that the specifications of the EV may vary depending on the region, hinting at a different setup for markets outside China.
The market launch of the electric SUV will commence in China in 2023, with “select global markets” to follow in the future. Besides the EV5 compact SUV, Kia is already working on an even smaller EV4 sub-compact model that will further expand its zero-emission range next to the Niro EV, the EV6 crossover, and the EV9 full-size SUV.