Kia to launch first dedicated EV next year

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TOKYO — Kia Motors will launch its first dedicated electric vehicle next year as part of a new seven-model EV-only lineup it will roll out across several segments through 2027.

The new EV strategy, outlined Wednesday by Kia CEO Ho Sung Song at the automaker’s Hwasung plant, is part of a push to derive 25 percent of its global sales from EVs by 2029.

The plan comes just a month after sibling brand Hyundai Motor announced plans to introduce a global battery-electric brand under the Ioniq name. It is all part of the Hyundai Motor Group’s effort to sell 1 million electric vehicles worldwide by 2025. In that period, the Korean auto juggernaut wants to be a market leader with a 10 percent global share in the EV segment.

The dedicated EV will be code-named CV and be delivered to worldwide starting next year, Kia said in a release. Unlike Kia’s Soul EV, which was an electrified version of an existing gasoline-powered nameplate, the new entry will be electric-only. It will be built on a new Electric-Global Modular Platform, or E-GMP, which Kia said will have the best-in-class interior space.

 “Kia is planning to respond to market demands by offering diversified product types, with a range of models suitable for urban centers, long-range journeys, and performance driving,” the company said.

The CV will be the lead-off model for a new lineup of EVs to 11 models by 2025. By 2027, seven of those entries will be dedicated EVs, Kia said.

By 2025, Kia wants to get 20 percent of its sales from EVs in developed markets such as North America, Europe and South Korea. By 2029, Kia wants EVs to generate a quarter of its worldwide sales.

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Saurabh Shukla

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