Take the volkswagen id3 and the audi q4 each on, for example, those two cars are ostensibly very similar but in reality quite different. So take this. The new kia ev6 its a very similar car and it shares many of its parts with the hyundai ioniq 5. But it looks completely different: its got a coupe like appearance, its much sleeker and much sportier, but whats it like to drive whats it like to live with. Weve got an entire morning with this late stage. Pre production prototype to find out so lets crack on now. Given this is only a prototype, the people at kia uk are keen to stress that some parts might not be quite production, ready, be that with regards to quality tech or the driving experience, but well do our best to cut through the smoke and mirrors. On this occasion, with that small caveat out, the way make sure you subscribe to the driving electric youtube channel and youve hit the bell icon, so youre notified when new videos go live its a shame. You havent got an ionic 5 here today, because its only really when you set the two cars side by side, you can really appreciate the differences. This kia, though, is instantly sportier, its more aggressive, its squatter, its its a more stylish alternative. If you ask me, but this car is representative of the uks gt line spec, which means you get bigger, wheels slightly more aggressive, styling stuff like that, but no matter which one you go for you get this stubby front end this really long wheelbase and this rising Window line is quite a clever trick really because it gives the illusion of a sloping, lower roof line without any effect on cabin space on the inside, and that is confirmed back here.

Im just over six foot tall and headroom is okay, but knee room and feet room is absolutely fantastic. This guys got a completely flat floor. So that means, if you are sat in the middle seat here, youre not jostling for space with the people sitting either side of you. If there is one issue its the fact that this car comes with a dark headlining, it is big back here, but it sometimes doesnt feel it. It sometimes feels a little bit claustrophobic. It wasnt a problem that we had on the hyundai ioniq 5 recently, because that car had a white interior and it would be improved. Admittedly, if you fitted a panoramic sunroof another area where the ev6 doesnt feel quite as roomy is the boot kia claims between 480 and 490 liters, depending on spec, which falls shy of the hyundais 527 litre low bay thats, measured up to the parcel shelf, the kias Sloping rear window restricts things further, but dont think for a second that is anything other than a very practical family car theres space under the floor for the cables and if you fold the seats flat, you get a big wide open 1300 liter space. That should more than suffice if youre looking to carry longer or larger items, theres also a space in the nose of the ev6 which differs in size depending on whether you go for one of the rear, wheel, drive or one of the all wheel, drive versions and The dark theme continues in here: weve seen some pretty high tech, wacky interiors in evs of late im thinking, tesla model 3 mustang mackie, even vws id models offer a kind of futuristic minimalistic look, but looking at this kia just seems to have played it safe.

Its quite a conventional layout now, if you look at the interior as a whole, youve got this curved touchscreen and some big digital dials behind the steering wheel, the menus, theyre all easy to navigate the graphics are super sharp. It just feels familiar. The ev6 will be available in three standard specs from launch air gt line and gt line s with prices from just over 40 000 pounds. Every model gets the twin 12.3 inch screens with apple carplay and android, auto vegan leather seats and dual zone climate control. On the outside theres at least 19 inch wheels, led lights and all all round parking sensors with a reversing camera. Climbing the range adds things like a better stereo bigger wheels, a power tailgate and 360 degree cameras. Quality is actually very good. Even in this late stage. Prototype model, but the one thing were not sold on is this touch sensitive panel down here? It actually operates both the climate control and the media controls and its just not that intuitive to use its even more fiddly than vws touchy, slidy climate controls and that thats saying something. One thing that shouldnt prove too fiddly is charging. The ev6 gets the latest 800 volt electrical architecture, which means itll mix it with the big boys when it comes to rapid top up times capable of rates of up to 250. Kilowatts kia claims a 10 to 80 recharge in less than 20 minutes. If you prefer to charge your home as many ev6 buyers will a full top up via a 7 kilowatt wall box will take 12 and a half hours, though remember its unlikely youll ever be plugging in from empty.

So a full charge should be achievable overnight. Another clever, slightly novelty thing that comes as standard on all, but the base level ev6 is its vehicle to load technology. It means that using a simple adapter you can plug in absolutely anything with a three pin plug straight into the car kia, says: itll power, your home in emergencies or indeed charge another electric car. But the likelihood is youll use it once to charge your phone or laptop before forgetting the functionality is even there total range from the 77.4 kilowatt hour battery stands at 328 miles for the rear, wheel, drive model or 314 miles for the four wheel drive model that Weve got here now we havent been driving particularly sympathetically and weve, been doing 2.93 miles per kilowatt hour, which equates to a range of roughly 220 to 230 miles, which means, if you dont, make full use of the 321 brake horsepower under your right. Foot. 260. 270 miles should be possible and weve been warned that this late stage prototype model might not drive quite as intended, but if the final car drives anything like this, i dont reckon the engineers have got much to worry about at all. Performance is certainly swift, not 62 miles an hour takes 5.2 seconds and theres that punchy instant acceleration for overtaking at pretty much any speed and theres. Even a near 600 horsepower gt model on the way next year, its definitely not as comfortable as an ioniq fight.

But i guess that was inevitable from the outset. The kia is designed to be the sportier, the more dynamic car and the ionic 5 is the more comfortable one theres a definite harshness to the rider its but its controlled, rather than particularly brittle. It doesnt send shocks through to the cabin its its a pretty decent compromise. Really there are different drive modes, eco, normal and sport, as well as a snow mode. Not that were going to be using that one today, which just cycle through all the usual parameters, weve actually found that normal probably represents the best kind of mix. The best blend of performance handling efficiency, that kind of stuff, whichever one you go for, though the ev6 does still feel like a heavy car. I guess its still hard to disguise the weight of those batteries and the electric motor, but i think, even at this stage its safe to say that if youre a keen driver, the ev6 could be a pretty good fit. The regenerative brakes are really simple to use and pretty effective as well its a similar system to one weve seen in the kia niro and the hyundai kona electric and operated via these steering wheel. Paddles. If you hold down the left, paddle itll actually bring the car to a complete, stop a little bit like using a foot brake with your hand. One area that kia could look to make some improvements is with regards to refinement its, perhaps not quite as quiet over rough surfaces as you might want it to be.

But again some of that could be down to the fact. This is still a late stage prototype because around town, its as quiet as youd want it to be Music. The key ev6, even in prototype, guys feels like a really well resolved car, its a more driver, oriented proposition than a hyundai ioniq 5, and for that you will have to sacrifice a degree of comfort and refinement. But dare i say it, and i dont say this lightly: it feels like the second generation of evs is nearly here. This is a practical family car that offers a strong range and even stronger charging, and all of that allows this car to compete with models costing really quite a bit more Music head to drivingelectric.com for all the latest electric and hybrid car advice, news and reviews and Check us out on twitter, facebook and instagram.

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