Kia’s first three-row electric SUV, the EV9, will finally be debuted at the end of this month. Newly released interior and exterior photos indicate production models look remarkably similar to the concept model that was previously showcased. The EV9 is set to enter the Taiwan market, where seven-seater electric SUVs are a rare occurrence.
South Korean automaker, Kia, has also announced the EV9’s interior and exterior specifications, painting a full picture of this highly-anticipated vehicle. We’ve seen over the past three years that automakers rarely make groundbreaking changes in their electrical vehicle lineups. In other words, this means the EV9’s futuristic style is bound to make an appearance in future models.
The front of the vehicle sports the EV9’s signature ‘Digital Tiger Face’ — a design that not only imparts a futuristic look and feel, but makes reference to the company’s baseball team, the Kia Tigers. However, you’ll probably have to use a bit of imagination if you actually want to see a tiger. The front also features cube lamps that utilize Kia’s innovative ‘Star Map LED daytime running lights’ to deliver an animated light pattern, which serve to elevate the high-tech feel of the EV9.
The key to the EV9’s distinctive shape lies in how it combines triangular fender structures and geometric wheel arches to create a unique side profile. Flush door handles and a tapered back roofline appear to have become a staple design in large-sized EVs.
To complete the EV9’s exterior profile, the rear of the vehicle also features the same simple lines that were well-received with the EV6. The only difference is, the EV9’s simple, clean lines have been slightly elongated and join up with a set of tail lights that mimic the styling of the front running lights. I must admit that I’m thankful they’ve finally ditched the wrap around tail lights that seem to be so popular.
Internal specs have yet to be released, but it’s assumed with a 122 inch wheelbase, the EV9 could be available in both a six and seven-seater layout. Occupants in the first and second row can recline to relax and rest while the vehicle is charging. The best part is, the second row can swivel 180 degrees to allow occupants to interact with those behind them. While you might not be able to squeeze in a mahjong table, at least cards are a possibility (if you don’t mind your feet getting squished).
The cockpit features an open, floating panoramic dashboard that extends from the driver’s seat to the vehicle’s center. The dashboard integrates dual 12.3-inch touch screens that have integrated a majority of functions, helping minimize the number of physical buttons to just frequently used shortcuts, such as AC or car seat ventilation.
The Kia EV9 is set to launch globally at the end of March. Sime Darby, the official distributer of Kia in Taiwan, expects to begin sales by the end of the year. It’s hoped that the EV9 will be as popular as the EV6 and have a positive effect on Taiwan’s electrical vehicle market.
It must be said that South Korean electric vehicles have become extremely popular in recent years, achieving record-high global sales, and helping erase previously negative perceptions of electrical vehicles. Nevertheless, there are still constraints when it comes to EV access in Taiwan. Those who are willing to splash out on this latest model will have to do a bit more waiting.
(Image Source: Kia)