Official: Kia provides first details on Soul EV arrival, specs

Filed under: Wagon, Hatchback, Kia, Electric

Kia Soul EV prototype - disguised

When Bob Dylan and his guitar-driven poetry embraced the amp in the mid-Sixties, he famously endured cries of “Judas!” from at least one dejected folkie. The Voice Of A Generation had gone electric, and apparently not all of his concert-goers were ready for the transition. We suspect the Kia Soul and its dancing hamsters will have an easier time of it.

In early October, Kia confirmed what had already long been rumored – the Soul is going electric, too, and now it’s revealing some initial details and specs. The automaker’s mega-popular ‘box’ car will be the company’s first EV sold in North America – or indeed, anywhere outside of its home market (Kia has offered its tiny Ray EV to government fleets in Korea in limited numbers). For the moment, officials aren’t saying exactly when the Soul EV will hit its North American dealers, but it has pinned down the “second half of 2014,” for global overseas deliveries to begin, so it’s fair to assume the car will carry a 2015 model year designation.

Kia is touting “class-leading range” in excess of 120 miles

And just what will Soul EV buyers have to look forward to? Kia says the model will feature an electric motor with 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque backed by a 27-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion polymer battery pack, figures that compare favorably with the 2013 Nissan Leaf (107 hp, 187 lb-ft, 24 kWh). Official estimates call for the 0-62 mph dash to fall in under 12 seconds, which isn’t much longer than the gas-powered 2014 model takes with its 164-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Top speed should be around 90 mph.

Kia is touting “class-leading range” in excess of 120 miles, though real-world figures are likely to be in the ballpark just north of the 75 or so miles the 2013 Leaf can muster. Charge times for the Soul EV are said to be on the order of 5 hours using a 240-volt home quick charger or 25 minutes on a 100-kW output charger (the sort usually found in a commercial environment) and Kia says the car will emit an audio tone at speeds under 12 mph and in reverse to address pedestrian safety concerns associated with the EV’s otherwise very quiet drivetrain.

No word yet on pricing or availability (it’s probably safe to assume the Soul EV won’t get a coast-to-coast rollout, instead focusing on select markets like California), but we’ll have our first impressions from a prototype drive in Korea shortly, so stay tuned. In the mean time, see the official press release below for more details.

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Kia provides first details on Soul EV arrival, specs originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 11 Nov 2013 09:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


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