After many months of slowly revealing details, KIA has finally fully lifted the lid off the Kia EV9, its first three-row seat electric flagship SUV.
By keeping the design close to the concept vehicle, the EV9 re-envisions an all-electric SUV, with a unique balance of natural and modern elements. Just like its popular and modern-looking smaller brother, the EV6, KIA was just not interested in making something dull.
Exterior Design and size
The EV9’s front has clear-cut lines and surfaces, which compliments the SUV’s signature Digital Tiger Face, Digital Pattern Lighting Grille and vertical headlamps.
The Digital Tiger Face features two clusters of small cube lamps adjacent to each headlamp. The EV9’s Star Map LED daytime running lights (DRL) create an animated lighting pattern that will signify Kia’s Digital Tiger Face for future EV models says KIA.
Seeing that it’s an electric vehicle, the EV9 also delivers an impressive aerodynamic coefficient of 0.28. According to KIA, this has been achieved through the implementation of several advanced features, including Kia’s first-ever 3D-sculpted underbody cover, which features a convex shape at the front and a concave shape at the rear.
Along with aerodynamic wheels, and innovative air curtains integrated into the front bumper, these elements combine seamlessly to provide superior airflow control and optimized performance and efficiency, delivering an exhilarating driving experience.
The vehicle features a 3,100-mm wheelbase, a 1,980-mm wide, 1,755-mm tall and 5,010 mm body. To get a clearer picture of the vehicle’s size, the current KIA Carnival is 1,775 mm tall, 1,995 mm wide and 5,155 long. So yes, it’s not as big, but it’s pretty big for an SUV.
Many Seating options
The Kia EV9 will be offered in a range of seating options that cater to diverse needs. KIA said they will offer the SUV with seven-seater and six-seater configurations and a variety of second-row seat options, totalling to four suitable different situations such as moving, charging, and resting.
Like with many high-end KIAs these days, the first-row features relaxation seats that ensure a comfortable resting posture. The second row, for the first time among global EV models, offers four seating options, including 3-seater bench seats, basic-type, relaxation-type, and swivel-type two-seater independent seats, providing customers with a variety of usage methods to choose from.
When equipped with the second-row relaxation seats, the EV9 allows first and second-row occupants to recline together while the SUV is charging. With the swivel seat option, the second-row seats swivel 180 degrees to enable conversations with those seated in the third row. Occupants in the third row are provided with charging points and cup holders.
Screens, screens, screens
The ‘Panoramic wide display’, which brings together a 12.3-inch cluster display, a 5-inch segment display, and a 12.3-inch infotainment system display, offers effortless vehicle function control as well as efficient delivery of information. Hidden type touch buttons beneath provide a start/stop function along with infotainment system as well as heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) control.
The EV9 features a broad choice of electric powertrain configurations based on the Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) and utilizing Kia’s fourth-generation battery technology.
A 76.1-kWh battery is offered exclusively with the Rear Wheel Drive (RWD) Standard model, while a 99.8-kWh battery is fitted in both the RWD Long Range and All Wheel Drive (AWD) variants.
The RWD Long Range model utilizes a 201 hp / 350 Nm electric motor, endowing the SUV with the ability to accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in 9.4 seconds.
Also powered by a single electric motor, albeit a more powerful 215 hp / 350 Nm variant, the Standard RWD EV9 can accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in 8.2 seconds.
The AWD variant is equipped with two electric motors that together unleash a total power output of nearly 400 hp and a combined torque of 600 Nm. This potent combination enables the SUV to surge from 0-to-100 km/h in just 6.0 seconds.
There will also be an even greater levels of performance, thanks to what KIA calls an optional Boost feature, which owners can purchase at the Kia Connect Store. The combined torque is increased to an exceptional 700 Nm, enabling the EV9 to accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in 5.3 seconds.
KIA was not going to let Tesla have all the fun
Perhaps one of the most exciting features KIA unveiled about the EV9 is the fact that the SUV is ready to provide level 3 autonomy.
Key to achieving this is Kia’s Highway Driving Pilot (HDP) system, which will provide the EV9 with conditional Level 3 autonomous driving. Fifteen sensors, including two lidars, enable it to scan for and detect objects in a full 360-degree field of view, enabling it to detect and react to the road and other users to prevent potential collisions.
By providing intelligent, proactive, real-time assistance across a wide range of conditions, Kia’s Highway Driving Pilot (HDP) system will meet the criteria required to deliver Level 3 autonomy in certain areas of the world.
The car will be capable of conditional driving automation where conditions permit, enabling the driver to temporarily take a break from controlling the vehicle.
Kia is planning to offer the HDP in the EV9 GT-line model in the future. Further details on the HDP will be disclosed nearer its market availability.
The EV9’s numerous additional features facilitated by Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) include Remote Smart Parking Assist 2 (RSPA 2).
This technology enables the EV9 to park itself without the need for driver intervention, whether in or out of the vehicle, with the driver initiating the procedure via the Kia smart key called Digital Key 2.