Test drive in the kia ev6: what does the stromer with high-tech battery offer?

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Kia EV6

In new spheres

Kia has had e-cars on offer for a long time. With the EV6, the South Korean manufacturer is entering other dimensions.

The Kia EV6 convinces during the first test drive: The specified factory consumption of 17.2 kWh/100 km seems quite realistic.

With the current movement towards e-mobility, many manufacturers have to venture into completely new realms.

Kia, on the other hand, can already draw on experience when it comes to battery-electric drives. With the e-Soul and the e-Niro, the Koreans were already on the road electrically before this was to a certain extent unavoidable due to the legal requirements.

A lot has happened in electric car technology since 2014, when the first e-Soul came onto the market. Probably the most important difference: while models such as the e-Soul still have the basic architecture of a conventionally powered car with electrical components, the latest generation of e-vehicles are now based on independent platforms. In this way, the engineers can accommodate larger battery packs and stow them optimally in the underbody. This ensures better driving characteristics – and gives the designers more freedom in the design. This is the only way to take advantage of the more compact drive units and create more interior space. With the new EV6, which is based on the modular “E-GMP” platform from the Hyundai Motor Group, this is immediately apparent from the long wheelbase: the front and rear axles are 2.90 meters apart. For comparison: a Skoda Octavia is only around one centimeter shorter than the new Stromer from Kia; but the wheelbase is a good 23 centimeters short!

In concrete terms, this means that the wheels have been pushed far into the corners of the car, leaving more space inside for passengers and luggage. In the EV6, this is particularly evident with the extremely generous amount of space in the second row of seats – and still a considerable trunk volume. Under the front hood of the Kia there is only a small storage compartment – at least enough to accommodate the charging cable and the adapter with which the e-car can be used as a mobile power storage device. You can use the EV6 battery to operate a raclette oven or a lawn mower – or charge another e-car or an e-bike.

High voltage in the sub-floor

An important unique selling point of the new platform that the Kia uses is the high voltage in the batteries. Instead of the 400 volts that are usual in electric cars, the system works with up to 690 volts. In short, the higher voltage offers the advantage that there is less power loss in the lines and therefore less heat. More energy can therefore be transferred both when charging and discharging – and no energy is wasted in the form of unnecessary heating of the components. For everyday use in an e-car, this means lower consumption and faster charging if you use a charging station with 800-volt technology. Then the EV6 charges with up to 240 kW, in just 18 minutes the battery is charged from 10 to 80%.

Together with the long range (528 km for the variant with rear-wheel drive, up to 506 km for the 4×4), this makes the Stromer a good touring car, which not only includes the space, but also the good sound insulation and the finely tuned suspension. Consumption is reduced when driving at a constant speed by using the rear axle whenever possible to drive the vehicle. The motor on the front axle is then not only de-energized, but also mechanically decoupled to reduce rolling resistance.

When it comes to the mechanics, Kia has done a great job with the futuristically designed crossover – especially since it can not only glide comfortably, but is also handy and pleasant to drive on winding roads. However, the digital side is at least as important in a modern car – especially with an electric drive. The Kia offers numerous driver assistance systems up to semi-automatic driving on the highway and a very modern interior. Here, the EV6 impresses at first sight with its two curved 12.3-inch displays that open up in front of the driver. There is also a large head-up display, which is a pleasant addition, especially for navigation.

Test drive in the Kia EV6: What does the Stromer with high-tech battery offer?-stromer

Cockpit with comfortable seats and large touch screen. There is still room for improvement when it comes to software.

All in all, the operating system unfortunately does not quite live up to the modern demands of the EV6. Operation via the touchscreen sometimes seems unnecessarily complicated and not entirely smooth. In addition, the navigation system cannot automatically plan the necessary charging stops. You either have to inform yourself here – or use your smartphone for external apps.

Kia offers the EV6 with two battery sizes – 58 or 77.4 kWh – with rear or 4 × 4 drive. For Switzerland, the tested 4 × 4 model with 325 hp will probably be the most popular version, a top model with 585 hp and all-wheel drive will follow in 2022, the other versions are available immediately – from CHF 49,950.

Test drive in the Kia EV6: What does the Stromer with high-tech battery offer?-test

Rear with high spoiler lip and spacious trunk.

Kia EV6 LR AWD

Engine: 2× e-machine

Power: 325 hp/605 Nm

Drive: auto 1 speed, 4×4

L×W×H: 4680x1880x1550mm

trunk: 480-1300L

Weight: 2188kg

0-100km/h: 5.2 sec.

Vmax: 185km/h

Range WLTP: 506 km

Price: from 60950 francs

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