Hyundai and Kia are known for producing adequate vehicles, commonly driven by the budget conscious. Not many would say that they ever dreamed of owning a Kia. However, in a pinch they might decide “a Kia will do just fine”. So for the average consumer it’s surprising that Kia, owned by Hyundai since 1998, would choose to make high performance EVs. Yet here we are in 2023, smashing expectations. Hyundai and Kia are aiming not just to fill in for a more expensive brand, but provide a competitive option. And really when you think about it, it makes sense. The switch to EVs is the perfect opportunity for these brands to reinvent.
2023 Kia EV6 GT
The 2023 Kia EV6 GT, like many high-performance EVs, is equipped with all wheel drive. As such, it has excellent grip and stability as the SUV crossover launches from 0-60mph in 3.2 seconds, does the 1/4mi in 11.6 seconds and tops out at 160mph. The suspension and steering are every bit as precise as the grip, making for a fun sporty drive.
As the first vehicle to use the Hyundai/Kia E-GMP (Electric-Global Modular Platform), the EV6 GT isn’t an afterthought to their gas powered models, but a whole new concept built from the ground up. The SUV’s 77.4 kWh battery pack provides up to 206 miles of range and the dual electric motors produce up to 576hp. While the hp is something to be desired, the battery pack leaves room for improvement. Hopefully, in the near future they will introduce upgrades.
Car and Driver says about the EV6: “a Korean brand best known for low prices, long warranties, and liberal financing has created a machine with performance that rivals the most revered Germans”. Quite the endorsement indeed! Perhaps we can overlook the slightly lacking battery pack, in favor of a nearly stellar vehicle overall. Or try the lower, base versions which offer less hp but more range. What do you think? Is it time to give Kia a try? Before you do, let’s discuss Hyundai.
Hyundai IONIQ 5 & IONIQ 6
Hyundai produces two attention grabbing EVs, the Hyundai IONIQ5 and the IONIQ6. The differences between the two are subtle. Both come with a 77.4kWh battery option, both accelerate from 0-60mph in 5.1 seconds and have a range of around 300mi. As the parent company to Kia, these EVs use the same electric-designed platform as the EV6. However, the IONIQ 5 is labeled as an SUV crossover ideal for families, and the IONIQ 6 a sedan for singles.
The most striking difference is that the IONIQ 6 comes with an all-wheel drive option. It also features power settings designed to give the driver more control over torque and range. These options indicate that Hyundai seeks to improve upon the IONIQ 5. We can expect that Hyundai will continue to implement their real-world research into the IONIQ 6 and newly announced IONIQ 7.
It’s clear that if you’re looking for the highest performance, the 2023 Kia EV6 GT is the way to go. But if you desire a sporty family crossover or a sleek sedan with flexibility, you may just choose a Hyundai. With all the new startups and models, buying electric comes with risks. It’s possible Kia and Hyundai could just be the safer bet and a worthy ride.