Kia Launches All-Electric EV3

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Drawing much in terms of style from the excellent EV9, the new EV3 will be Kia’s foray into the all-electric compact crossover segment. Shown today in its home market, the EV3 is likely to be popular with EV shoppers when it goes on sale in this country.

For starters, it is a handsome thing with the scaled down visage of its big brother. Kia says the EV3 measures 169.3 inches long and 72.8 inches wide on a 105.5-inch wheelbase; this puts it in league with vehicles like the Volvo EX30. In fact, the EV3 is about five inches shorter than Kia’s own Niro but its cabin could be more spacious thanks to an EV-first architecture instead of having electric gubbins shoved into a body initially designed for a (at least partial) gasoline-fueled powertrain. If you’re wondering, the Niro wheelbase is barely an inch longer than the EV3 despite the entire machine being nearly half-a-foot greater in length.

At launch in other markets, the EV3 will be available with a choice of battery packs, either 58.3 kWh or 81.4 kWh in size. You can wager the latter will be the default choice in North America, though we wouldn’t rule out the former technically being available in order to permit Kia to advertise an attractive entry price.


Speaking of price, Kia is said to be targeting $30,000 in this country, a figure chased by umpteen other EV makers but offered only by shorter-range cars like the Mini Cooper Electric and Nissan Leaf. Hitting the dual targets of 300 miles and $30k would be something of a coup. However, there’s every chance in the world both will be true – just not in the same trim.

The endlessly optimistic WLTP measurement tests claim at least one variant of the EV3 will be able to traverse 600 kilometers (375 miles) on a single charge, though the more realistic EPA rating has yet to be determined. If the little scamp can eke 300 miles out of its battery, it would make an attractive option for EV shoppers looking for a rig this size that doesn’t need to be constantly plugged into an outlet.

Horsepower is said to be right around the 200hp mark, with torque settling at roughly the same number (150kW and 283nm are the official measures). Acceleration to highway speeds should take somewhere in the mid-7 second range, on to a top speed just north of 100 miles per hour. Statistic nerds will enjoy learning the EV3 has a coefficient of drag listed at 0.263 Cd which is about two ticks below the much larger, but similarly styled, EV9. Front-wheel drive is the propulsion of choice, at least to start. An all-wheel drive variant is likely to appear later.


Kia figures the EV3 should wend its way to our shores sometime next year.


[Images: Kia]


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Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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  • Rollin Rollin on May 26, 2024

    I love the looks. I mean, sure, I look at every car these days and can't help thinking that it'd be great if the rear window belt line were 6" lower, so that the view would not be just of cars' rooflines, but the actual cars themselves. That way my 'brain' could build up a 360° picture of the surrounding traffic, without having to strain, because my eyes haven't really seen any cars, just a bunch of rooflines (most of them gray in colour). And the C pillar could be thinner. Yeah, I really want someone to resurrect BMW 2002 styling from the '70s, as far as that goes. But in a hatch, of course.


    Also, if it had a hybrid powertrain, or ICE with a planetary gear transmission... Or a manual. In brown, I know...

  • Tane94 Tane94 on May 27, 2024

    Not as stylish as the Soul which it is replacing but a practical shape and bonus points for EV only.

  • 3-On-The-Tree I don’t think Toyotas going down.
  • ToolGuy Random thoughts (bulleted list because it should work on this page):• Carlos Tavares is a very smart individual.• I get the sense that the western hemisphere portion of Stellantis was even more messed up than he originally believed (I have no data), which is why the plan (old plan, original plan) has taken longer than expected (longer than I expected).• All the OEMs who have taken a serious look at what is happening with EVs in China have had to take a step back and reassess (oversimplification: they were thinking mostly business-as-usual with some tweaks here and there, and now realize they have bigger issues, much bigger, really big).• You (dear TTAC reader) aren't ready to hear this yet, but the EV thing is a tsunami (the thing has already done the thing, just hasn't reached you yet). I hesitate to even tell you, but it is the truth.
  • ToolGuy ¶ I have kicked around doing an engine rebuild at some point (I never have on an automobile); right now my interest level in that is pretty low, say 2/5.¶ It could be interesting to do an engine swap at some point (also haven't done that), call that 2/5 as well.¶ Building a kit car would be interesting but a big commitment, let's say 1/5 realistically.¶ Frame-up restoration, very little interest, 1/5.¶ I have repainted a vehicle (down to bare metal) and that was interesting/engaging (didn't have the right facilities, but made it work, sort of lol).¶ Taking a vehicle which I like where the ICE has given out and converting it to EV sounds engaging and appealing. Would not do it anytime soon, maybe 3 to 5 years out. Current interest level 4/5.¶ Building my own car (from scratch) would have some significant hurdles. Unless I started my own car company, which might involve other hurdles. 😉
  • Rover Sig "Value" is what people perceive as its worth. What is the worth or value of an EV somebody creates out of a used car? People value different things, but for a vehicle, people generally ascribe worth in terms of reliability, maintainability, safety, appearance and style, utility (payload, range, etc.), convenience, operating cost, projected life, support network, etc. "Value for money" means how much worth would people think it had compared to competing vehicles on the market, in other words, would it be a good deal to buy one, compared to other vehicles one could get? Consider what price you would have to ask for it, including the parts and labor you put into it, because that would affect the “for the money” part of the “value for money” calculation. An indicator of whether people think an EV-built-in-a-used-car would provide "value for money" is the current level of demand for used cars turned into EVs. Are there a lot of people looking for these on the market? Or would building one just be a hobby? Repairing an existing EV, bringing it back into spec, might create better value for the money. Although demand for EVs is reportedly down recently.
  • ToolGuy Those of you who aren't listening to the TTAC Podcast, you really don't know what you are missing.
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