Kia EV3 small electric SUV follows EV9, tops 300 miles of range


Kia on Thursday revealed the production-bound version of its EV3 compact electric crossover that might, if Kia keeps to original hints, start around $35,000. 

The EV3 emerges on the way to production in much the same form as the EV3 concept that was first shown in October 2023, albeit with a little more round to its profile and the rear end especially, and with a completely different interior that borrows some ideas from the larger Kia EV9 electric SUV.

This served as a global reveal for the model and, as of yet, Kia is short on U.S. specs, details, or differences—or whether, to be sure, the model is headed to America. If it were to arrive in the U.S. at the $35,000 starting price Kia suggested for the concept, it might be a strong rival for the Volvo EX30, along with others including the Hyundai Kona Electric and next-generation Chevrolet Bolt EV—and leave Kia’s own Niro EV on uncertain ground.

The EV3 set for success from the start thanks to several key decisions. It’s built on Hyundai’s flexible E-GMP architecture, which has resulted in a hit parade of rewarding-to-drive, fast-charging EVs from Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis, and it has a coefficient of drag of just 0.263—great for efficiency in such an upright vehicle. 

Hyundai Motor Group E-GMP platform

Hyundai Motor Group E-GMP platform

Kia EV3 isn’t a hot hatch, but it looks sharp

Kia has managed to carry over many of the same technical and geometric details from the concept, and splice in Kia’s latest Star Map lighting theme, which just also made its debut in the 2025 Kia EV6. The EV3 will be offered in nine different exterior body colors. 

Two different battery packs will be featured in the EV3, fitted to EV3 Standard models and EV3 Long Range versions, and amounting to 58.3 kwh and 81.4 kwh, respectively. Kia notes that charging times will be in the vicinity of 31 minutes from 10-80%. Regardless of the battery pack, a single 150-kw (201-hp) electric motor at the front wheels provides 209 lb-ft of torque and accelerates the EV3 to 62 mph in 7.5 seconds.

Kia EV3

Kia EV3

Kia EV3 range shaping up for 300+ miles

Kia boasts of a WLTP driving range of up to 373 miles. EPA ratings are based on different driving cycles, and it isn’t a direct translation, but given how other Kia EVs like the EV6 and EV9 have fared, that might mean an EPA range rating of well over 300 miles for some versions.

The EV3 gets a more advanced version of its regenerative braking system, including one-pedal driving and adjustable modes for various levels of regen. The EV3 will be one of the few vehicles in its compact class to provide so-called Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) power output, which is good for powering small appliances and tools—and a gateway for other bidirectional charging features, perhaps. 

The dedicated EV platform accommodates what looks like a roomy passenger space considering this model’s decidedly compact exterior. While cargo capability are rather ordinary for this size of vehicle, at 17.0 cubic feet of rear cargo space with the back seats up and less than a cubic foot of frunk space, the interior layout allows a sliding table, fully reclining seats for a fold-back relaxation mode, and a center console with a sliding table and storage area. An adjustable two-tier luggage floor allows 5.5 inches in load-floor flexibility.

New Kia EV3

New Kia EV3

 

Little EV3 goes big with interface, streaming, AI

The focal point of the EV3 dash is its big widescreen display, spanning nearly 30 inches and incorporating two 12.3-inch displays plus a five-inch climate control panel—essentially a version of what’s made its debut in the EV9. The one at the center of the dash is a touchscreen good for entertainment and navigation. 

A smartphone- or smartwatch-based digital key system allows entry without a physical keyfob. Kia plans to provide downloadable display themes to customize the EV3 dash and infotainment system, and streamable content will be available through a Premium Streaming service powered by webOS and via LG’s content platform. Kia says that with the top Harman Kardon audio system the experience will be akin to home cinema. 

The Kia EV3 uses integrated generative AI for its voice assistant, extending natural language commands to span vehicle functions, entertainment, and info searches. 

Just as in the EV3 concept, there’s good use of recycled materials in the production-bound EV3—including recycled fabric for the dash and door trim plus PET used throughout the interior.

New Kia EV3

New Kia EV3

 

US arrival date for Kia EV3?

Kia says that the EV3 will be introduced in Korea in July 2024, followed by Europe in the second half of the year. It says it “has plans to expand the sale of EV3 into other regions, with subsequent launches to be expected after the European market entry.” So America might well be part of the plan in 2025.



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