With the exception of usually having invigorating acceleration, many electric vehicles aren’t much fun to drive. In fact, some provide as much driving satisfaction as a spin dryer.
Some EVs pitch when you come off the throttle, and some are quite noisy at speed, but the EV6 remains commendably quiet and well behaved. It is the first of 11 battery electric vehicles the company proposes to introduce by 2026.
The EV6 is a very good-looking car with a swooping roofline and upswept rear styling, and it shares its underpinnings with the Hyundai Ionic 5. Recessed door handles and narrow panel gaps hint at the quality of car, and the cabin has a well-designed curved screen display across the dashboard.
Kia has retained some touch-sensitive switches and knobs, so you don’t have to delve into the computer just to, say, adjust the heater, which is a good thing, and at the touch of a button you can swap the centre console display between heating and ventilation controls or infotainment.
Gears are selected via a rotary knob and the cabin features interesting lined materials on the top of the dashboard which are apparently made from recycled plastic bottles. It all feels good quality, with a plethora of charging ports and cubby holes, and is generally a nice place to be.
For the seats there is a choice of what Kia calls black vegan leather and black suede, or white vegan leather and black suede with green stitching. The seats are comfortable but despite being contoured they slightly lack lateral support.
Rear seat passengers have exceptionally good legroom and because there is no transmission tunnel they don’t end up with their knees under their chin.
The boot has up to 490 litres of luggage space with the rear seats up, and up to 1,300 litres with them folded. There is limited access to the boot from the reclinable rear seats, with enough room to fit some skis. There are also another 52 litres of extra storage space under the bonnet.
On the downside, rear visibility is poor, due to a combination of a shallow rear screen, head restraints and thick rear pillars. There is, however, a rear-view camera, which takes the sting out of it.
As well as being roomy and well finished the EV6 rides and corners without roll or drama, has excellent steering, plenty of pep and one of the best stereo/sat nav set-ups I have encountered.
An ultra-rapid charge from 10 to 80 per cent takes 18 minutes using a 350kW charger, or one hour 13 minutes with a 50kW charger. Using a 7kW home charger you can fill the battery pack to 100 per cent in seven hours and 20 minutes.
Kia claims all UK variants can travel at least 300 miles on one charge and the rear-wheel-drive versions can manage 328 miles on the combined cycle.
The EV6 is a game changer for Kia and a huge leap forward from the start of the company’s electrification programme, which started with the Soul EV in 2015.
Efficiency and reliability are obviously important, but the EV6’s trump card is that it is one EV you will actually enjoy driving.
Kia EV6 GT-Line S AWD
Top Speed: 114mph
0-62mph: 5,2 seconds
CO2 emissions: none
Range: 300 miles