Kia to launch seven bespoke electric cars by 2027

Kia's 'Plan S' business strategy set to expand beyond its previous promise, with seven “dedicated” electric vehicles due by 2027

Kia recently announced its ‘Plan S’ business strategy, in which the maker confirmed plans to launch 11 electric vehicles (EVs) by 2025. The company has now revealed it will bring seven "dedicated" electric cars to market by 2027 – models based on bespoke electric architecture.

It’s not clear how many of the seven dedicated EVs are included in the original 11 ‘Plan S’ models, though it’s understood there will be some crossover. Kia released a single darkened teaser image (above) along with confirmation of the seven electric models – suggesting a variety of bodystyles – from a Citroen ami-inspired urban electric car to a full-size family SUV.

The manufacturer previously emphasised that battery electric models will cover the brand’s entire line-up – including "passenger vehicles, SUVs and MPVs" from 2022. It has also suggested the brand’s SUV range, with the help of new Sportage and Sorento models, is set to take an even greater share of the mix – growing from around 50% of total sales as it currently stands, to 60% two years from now.

Earlier this year, Kia confirmed that 6% of cars it sold in the first quarter of 2020 were zero-emisson electric vehicles – a 75% increase on the same period in 2019. Kia will invest just over £19 billion under its Plan S strategy, targeting 500,000 electric-car sales per year by 2025.

The first of the seven bespoke electric vehicles will be revealed next year. Codenamed ‘CV’, it’s expected to take the form of a coupe-styled crossover model, much like Audi’s forthcoming Q4 e-tron SUV. The Kia CV will be sold in “many regions globally” with “the same competitive product quality and eye-catching design as Kia’s other vehicles”.

It will have a range of 310 miles and a sub-20-minute rapid-charging time. Its styling could draw inspiration from the Imagine by Kia concept, which was revealed in March 2019 and described as a "visual embodiment" of the brand's move towards electrification.

Specific battery and motor details haven't been revealed, but Kia did say it plans to offer two different types of electric car, with different charging capabilities. This will allow for variations in performance, speed and price – to "meet the diverse needs of customers," Kia claims.

“Many of Kia’s new EVs will be offered in Europe, which is currently the focal point for EV sales growth worldwide. In every one of the last five years," Emilio Herrera, Kia Motors Europe's chief operating officer said. "We have reported growing sales of Kia EVs, and our next-generation models will accelerate this trend further.”

In addition to the firm’s dedicated electric cars, Kia will continue to offer electric derivatives of its petrol and diesel cars. It'll "nurture" key markets as it looks to achieve a 20% electric, 80% internal-combustion sales mix and expects electric cars to be as profitable as petrol and diesel ones by 2025. 

Elsewhere, Kia’s ‘Plan S’ covers electric vehicle-based "mobility solutions", which it claims will help solve global issues such as urban pollution. These will include car-sharing, autonomous technology, and e-commerce businesses, as well as mobility hubs in cities with stricter environmental regulations.

Long-term, Kia will look to launch "self-driving robotaxis" and "on-demand roboshuttles" around the aforementioned mobility hubs. They'll also house charging points, vehicle maintenance centres and other "convenience facilities".

Kia will also reveal a "new brand system" towards the end of 2020, which it says will target people with a "natural inclination for digital tools" – chiefly Millennials (those born between the early 1980s and early 2000s) and Generation Z (those born after the mid-1990s).

As proof of its commitment to electromobility, Kia has invested in Rimac Automobili and the IONITY rapid-charging network. The latter, Kia says, will "pave the way for advancing Kia’s business of high-speed recharging infrastructure development in Europe and other major countries".