Kia EV6 hatchback review
"The Kia EV6 is one of the best electric cars on sale, with a great range and rapid charging"
- 300-mile+ range
- Fast charging
- Impressive tech
- Firm ride
- Rear headroom
- Smaller battery size not available in the UK
The Kia EV6 is a sporty electric hatchback with a range of over 300 miles, impressive 350kW rapid charging and a 577bhp performance version on the way. It's closely related to the Hyundai Ioniq 5, which is our Best Family Electric Car for 2022. All this makes it a potential favourite in the battle between the Skoda Enyaq iV, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Cupra Born and Tesla Model Y.
It's Kia's first purpose-built electric model that can’t be had with a petrol or plug-in hybrid powertrain. This gives it some key advantages, such as a low centre of gravity for better handling and a flat floor that improves passenger and luggage space.
There are currently two versions on offer in the UK, both of which come with a 77.4kWh battery. The more affordable option is rear-wheel drive and has a single motor with 226bhp, giving it a range of up to 328 miles. Spend around £4,000 more and you get an extra motor up front, increasing power to 321bhp and adding four-wheel drive but reducing range slightly to 314 miles.
We've now tried both, and the rear-wheel-drive version felt every bit as quick as its 7.3-second 0-62mph time suggests. It's very quiet, especially at town speeds, and feels slightly sharper than the Hyundai Ioniq 5. Not only does it look a bit more sporty thanks to its lower stance but its suspension is a notch firmer as well, improving body control but also transmitting a few more bumps into the seats.
We think the cheaper version is the sweet-spot in the range, because while the all-wheel-drive model is faster in a straight line, it doesn't feel much more exciting to drive overall, has a shorter range and costs significantly more.
Inside, your eyes will be drawn quickly to the curved dual-screen setup for the instruments and infotainment, which spans the dashboard in a graceful arc. Materials are of a good quality too, casting doubt on the assumption Volkswagen still makes the best-quality mass market interiors. There's ample space and lots of kneeroom even in the second row, although headroom does suffer somewhat because of the low roof. A 490-litre boot should come in handy, as will a 40-litre 'frunk' in the rear-wheel drive model.
As you'd imagine, it's close between the EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq 5 but even after we compare them back-to-back, the choice is likely to come down to personal taste. The Kia is more conventional and sporty looking than the quirky Hyundai, with a slightly more precise driving experience. The Hyundai is more striking and a bit more practical, with extra space in its back seats and boot. The Kia stacks up well in its own right, however, with a competitive range figure and interior for the money, making it one of the best EVs in the £40-50,000 price bracket.