By on March 15, 2021

kia ev6

Kia is planning on launching the EV6 sometime this month, and as a tease, the brand dropped some images to go along with a bunch of marketing speak about design philosophy.

The company is using the phrase “Opposites United” to describe its overarching design philosophy, and for the EV6, it will use five “pillars” called “bold for nature”, “joy for reason”, “power to progress”, “technology for life”, and “tension for serenity.”

The press release goes on to describe each in a mish-mash of buzzwords that probably sounded great to some higher-up but gives us no real clarity on what any of it means.

kia ev6

I’ll try, though. The first pillar seems to relate to exterior design and connections to shapes seen in nature, the second seems to suggest Kia will create a fun experience for buyers via color choice while also trying to influence customers’ moods (presumably in a good way), the third implies that Kia will attempt to build off past successes, the fourth is about Kia using all sorts of new tech to wow buyers, and the fifth acknowledges the contrasts inherent in design.

I think I got that right. Google Translate still hasn’t added a “marketing BS to English” feature as of yet.

kia ev6

Maybe a couple of quotes from Kia will clear it up.

“EV6, as the first dedicated Kia EV, is a showcase of human-centered, progressive design and electrified power. We strongly believe EV6 is a compelling and relevant model for the new EV market,” said Karim Habib, Senior Vice President and Head of Global Design Center. “With EV6 we aimed to create a distinctive, impactful design by using a combination of sophisticated, high-tech features on pure and rich volumes, while providing a unique space as a futuristic EV.”

kia ev6

“We want our products to deliver an instinctive and natural experience that improves the daily lives of our customers. Our aim is to design the physical experience of our brand and to create original, inventive, and exciting electric vehicles. The ideas of our designers and the purpose of the brand are becoming more connected than ever, with our customers at the center of what we do and influencing every decision that we make,” Habib said.

If that doesn’t help, we at least have pics to gawk at.

kia ev6

Our initial take is that the EV6 is next in a line of current or upcoming EV crossovers with sleek exterior lines and minimalist interiors. Attractive, though not quite so sexy as to turn many heads.

kia ev6

Or, put another way – naturally bold with reasonable joy while presenting progressive power and including technology for life, all in a design that exudes serenity despite tension.

[Images: Kia]

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36 Comments on “Kia EV6 Images Released Among Flurry of Marketing Speak...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I don’t like the looks, and the marketing babble is terrible.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      Toyota’s new EV gets unveiled on Wednesday. From what I’ve seen of it, they’ve somehow managed to achieve new levels of weird looks. This is much more conservative.

    • 0 avatar
      thegamper

      This looks pretty good to me. Nothing really offensive, sleek, futuristic looking without going overboard. The marketing babble is something that just about any company is going to overload on when they are about to ask you to pay more than you are used to or more than seems reasonable for any product. So, I am guessing this would ultimately have an “non-Kia like” price at some point in the future.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Let’s check the EV tropes list:

    X – no door handles
    X – screen overload
    X – gimmicky steering wheel (either color or design)
    O – no knobs or interior switches for common functions.
    X – “S” turbine wheels
    X – more talk about connectivity and ambient lighting features over the vehicle’s use as transportation.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      Well, they had to so *something* to raise your hackles, right?

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        It’s frustrating because the Niro EV is largely conventional.
        However, for some reason every dedicated BEV needs to amp up the goofball. I don’t hate *all* of the whimsy (although I admittedly do hate a lot of it) but I don’t see the gain in niche targeting if the manufacturers actually want BEVs to be their sole future offering.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Nailed the check box list. Reason: its an application so having Bluetooth is more important then how it drives. Also hard to sell the driving experience when its no longer a V6 vs V8, turbo vs NA, manual vs automatic type conversation. For EVs just give us the range.

      I was in a meeting when my company launched a new product and the marketing messaging we created boiled down to throwing stuff against a wall to see what stuck. OHHHhhhh I like that word, let’s us it – was pretty much the process.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Eh, screen overload and heavy focus on connectivity are just the modern car market. The Jeep Grand Wagoneer is the new poster child for screens in cars and it is powered by a dinosaur-swilling dinosaur.

      Everything else is just aping Tesla, and why not, given that they are the only successful marketer of EVs to date.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        There is irony that if you spend $15K on a Kia Rio or $450k on a Rolls Royce then you get traditional IU design but nearly any price in between you get an interior that looks like you are walking through a Circuit City.

        “and why not”
        Are people buying Teslas because they get the BEV part very right or because they don’t have door handles and no climate control knobs? All this Tesla design copying reminds me of the mid 1980s when the American car companies decided that superficially mimicking import cars was the ticket to success.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        “Everything else is just aping Tesla”

        This is every automaker, only their BEVs aren’t even much less money to buy:
        tinyurl.com/5x766du8

  • avatar
    RHD

    Those phrases bring to mind “freedom through work”. Not a good thing.
    (That originated in 1873, by the way.)
    The Kia dealership will add “Prosperity through Debt” to the pile.

    Speaking of juxtaposition and contrast, the mid-century modern buildings embody form before function. We can only hope that the car makes better use of space and materials than that.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Looks like a mashup of vaguely retro styling cues, inside and out. But none of them really has an impact and the overall effect is “just another midsize crossover.”

    Honestly that’s not a bad thing. We need more EV entries in the biggest segment of today’s car market.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    A bit obscure but could “EV6” be a “Eve6” reference (itself being an X-Files reference)?

  • avatar
    A Scientist

    “bold for nature”, “joy for reason”, “power to progress”, “technology for life”, and “tension for serenity.”

    Me: *seizures and convulsions*

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Marketing BS aside, Cadillac should hire the designer of this vehicle to do a crash restyle of the Lyriq.

    And – lo and behold – are those knobs I see?

  • avatar
    dusterdude

    Looks “ok” other than rear… I’m amazed at significant level of EV investment all the OEMs are making. They are all “ gambling” that their will be a massive uptick in ev acceptance in next few years … ( and maybe the acceptance level will increase dramatically in next few years ? )

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      They will lose that bet, and Chrysler/Stellantis will win it all. I know this because its the most ridiculous thing which could happen but we live in Clown World now and therefore it has become the most likely outcome.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      They are responding to the regulatory environment. Two of the world’s biggest car markets (Europe and China), making up about half of worldwide car sales, are likely to outlaw ICE cars except in specialized applications within a decade or so. Even in other markets there will be regulatory factors pushing EV acceptance, such as ICE bans in city centers.

      • 0 avatar
        NormSV650

        Why are the Japanese non-existent or late?

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          “Why are the Japanese non-existent or late?”

          Toyota is unveiling its X-Prologue EV on Wednesday.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          They are smarter to not jump head first into the pool of loss leaders. Remember Nissan has been producing the Leaf for about ten years, have they every profited on it? Ghosn claimed in 2014 it was almost profitable per unit with that year selling 30,200 units (S started at $28,980). Then it took a nose dive in 2015 to 18,442 and has not cracked 15K units ever since. Barely profitable at 30K units suggests at 14K units and below Nissan takes a loss on every unit. So if you are post Ghosn CEO Makoto Uchida, why on Earth would you want more EVs to sell when you can’t profit -or barely even sell- on the one you have?

          The late Sergio Marchionne was quoted saying FCA lost $14K on every Fiat 500e in 2014 (MSRP $33,210, true build cost = $47,210). Fiat just launched a Europe only “New 500” EV in early 2020 selling for $45,213 USD, just a tad less than the build cost we can derive from Sergio’s comments. Will it sell? More importantly, will it be profitable?

          “The New 500 is initially available only as a 2-door cabriolet four-seater in the “La Prima” trimline, with production limited to 500. More model variants will be announced in July 2020.[12] The “La Prima” launch editions have a retail price of €37900 in Italy,[11] before any local government incentives.”

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiat_New_500

          “Speaking at a recent conference in Washington D.C, Marchionne delivered the brutally honest warning: “If you are considering buying a 500e I hope you don’t buy it, because every time I sell one it costs me $14,000.””

          https://www.autoexpress.co.uk/fiat/500/87129/sergio-marchionne-asks-customers-not-to-buy-fiat-500e

          https://www.goodcarbadcar.net/nissan-leaf-sales-figures/

          “Automotive News reports that at last week’s Paris Motor Show, when asked about the LEAF’s balance sheet Ghosn responded candidly but carefully.

          “We are getting there,” Ghosn said. “Are we amortizing and depreciating everything we have spent? No. But if you look at the margin of profit – the direct cost of the car and the revenue of the car – we are getting into positive, which is good for this technology.””

          https://www.torquenews.com/2250/nissan-leaf-now-profitable-sort

  • avatar
    kcflyer

    I like the looks of it. I guess that puts me in the minority. Hopefully it comes in much cheaper than the Mach E and VW. I think we are headed into a crushing combination of higher cost and lower buying power, especially for power and transportation. The Chinese are playing 4 D chess while our politicians are playing candy land. Us: tear down perfectly good coal power plants for which we have plentiful coal. Them: buy the plants for pennies on the dollar and build them in China. Us: Build expensive, unreliable solar and wind farms that last 20 years before being landfill, refuse to build nuclear (even though it is the the safest and least polluting). So we wind up with expensive and unreliable power production feeding out of date and vulnerable electrical grid. Then regulate ICE vehicles to extinction or beyond the reach of most Americans who are not wealthy. Then demand they purchase very expensive EV’s or take the EV bus. :(

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      “refuse to build nuclear (even though it is the the safest and least polluting)”

      That’s true, until it isn’t. Nuclear safety is a complex issue that is never settled. Some consider “nuclear safety” to be an oxymoron; others point to the numerous safety issues with conventional plants for comparison.

      I don’t know enough to really say. I’ve been to Chernobyl, but it’s more of a testament to Soviet politics than representative of an industry. Still, it must be considered.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        Here’s Oklo’s application:

        https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200317005470/en/Oklo-Submits-the-First-Combined-License-Application-for-an-Advanced-Fission-Plant

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        How safe is Pripyat/the reactor site? I’ve seen documentaries where guides carry Geiger counters into the zone and essentially declare a space “safe” after a manual check, but I’m a bit leery of this overall. With my luck I’d go there and develop some health abnormality in a year.

        • 0 avatar
          SCE to AUX

          @28: Our tour guide carried a Geiger counter with her from Kiev to Chernobyl/Pripyat.

          The readings about 150 yards from the reactor were about 10x higher than the baseline she took in Kiev. There were several very small hot spots that were orders of magnitude hotter than that.

          Near the reactor, we were exposed to about 1.02 microsieverts per hour (pretty low), and we stayed right there only about 10 minutes.

          https://www.livescience.com/65673-is-visiting-chernobyl-safe.html

          They like to compare the radiation accumulated during a tour of Chernobyl with that accumulated during a long airline flight at 40,000 ft.

          FWIW, our tour guide said she makes this trip *every day*. While at the reactor, some French workers showed up for their shift wearing simple coveralls, parking there in company cars. (A French company built the new dome cover). I figured that if the experts aren’t wearing radiation suits where I’m standing, then we’re probably OK for a few minutes’ stay.

      • 0 avatar
        kcflyer

        Hopefully the Molten Salt reactors using Thorium will someday become a widespread reality. They evidently are designed so an overheat will melt a safety plug thus draining away the reactive material in a safe simple containment. Hopefully the world leaned from the Japanese where not to build reactors. As for the Russians, it seems when you instill fear into people they are less likely to speak truth to power. I fear our nation is getting closer to that model, not farther away, with each passing year. Overall though, the speakers I watch quote statistics that say nuclear is second only to hydro power in safety, emissions, reliability and cost.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Stellantis has no positions in China and their Peugeot/Opel side of the house no doubt has Europe covered for whatever the EU politburo has in mind. What will happen is the Stellantis board will leverage the Chrysler brands in North America as profit centers as FCA did and as needed will introduce whatever EV is required but to the bare minimum because they simply won’t be profitable in USDM (short of unforeseen geopolitical events).

    GM is more a PRC company at this point than an “American” one so long as their products are profitable in PRC, they will continue to sell things mainstream like the Bolt likely at a loss and perhaps niche things like the Hummer EV at profit. GMNA will likely overall be profitable though because of the truck lines which will not be challenged, so I don’t think they are very worried about the next three to four years (GM sold its Opel operations and its European presence is minimal I imagine because it cannot profit there). Ford is the one most at risk IMO.

    Ford’s presence in China is minimal, Ford Europe’s sales were down 26.8% in 2020 (and it just announced its going full EV in 2030), and Ford as a whole in more recent years has relied on F-Series for something like 90% of its profits. Unless the F-150 EV sells very well and sells *profitably*, I’d say they are in trouble mid term. Should this occur, I believe they will continue to rely on conventional F-Series sales until they figure something else out.

    I also believe they will pretend the Mock-E never happened unless it is somehow a smash success, they would have been much wiser to introduce the trial balloon model as a “Edge EV” with less fanfare. In this way if it became a hit they could promote the hell out of it and if not, it was never something you pushed hard to try to create fans (and enemies) out of it – it could have gained those on its merits instead of propaganda and agitprop.

    https://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/ford/2021/01/15/fords-sales-europe-fell-nearly-27-2020/4181582001/

    https://www.autonews.com/executives/ford-europe-repositions-ev-focused-future

  • avatar

    I don’t like the shape of steering wheel.

    Now all Kia needs to do is to start building Gigafactories with LG or Samsung or SK. Then it becomes the new Standard of the WORLD, at least in eyes of TTAC.

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