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Kia Concept EV9 unveiled to preview fully-electric seven-seat SUV


While not yet in production form, the Concept EV9 previews Kia’s second dedicated fully-electric vehicle that will be even more practical than the inbound EV6

Kia has unveiled the Concept EV9 large SUV with a striking design that previews a future production model under the Korean brand.

After releasing a light teaser earlier this week, the images show a fittingly radical design for the fully-electric large SUV that is expected to pack seven seats and is set for a public showing at AutoMobility LA next week.

Kia Concept EV9 front
The Kia Concept EV9 previews the brand’s second dedicated electric vehicle

Breaking down the design

The boxy shape is likely to be toned down in production form but there are other elements such as the LED daytime that bear some similarity to the Sportage midsize SUV.

These are paired with a checkerboard LED headlight design that sit on either side of a smooth surface – as there is little need for a front grille with no hot engine to cool.

However, there appears seems to be some aerodynamic function with a small opening at the front that could feed air through the cut out at the top of the bonnet but its purpose remains unclear.

Kia Concept EV9 rear
The rear lights feature a Y-spoke design

Looking at the Concept EV9 from above, designers have placed a panoramic sunroof with a boxy cut out on top while the rear features a striking set of tail lights with a Y-spoke design.

The side mirrors are almost undetectable at some angles with their wingtip-style form that suggests the placement of exterior cameras to show a live feed of the outside displayed on a screen inside the car – similar to the Genesis GV60 and Audi e-tron.

Moving inside, the Concept EV9 appears to feature a material-like covering on the dash and the squared-off oval design for the steering wheel – which is perhaps the least likely element to make it to production form.

Stretching its way across most of the dash is a huge widescreen display that is reminiscent of the Sportage and is also a squared-off oval design, with the screen controlled by buttons on the dash.

The interior itself is made from upcycled materials developed from ocean waste, showing a design process more conscious of the environment, similar to what we’ve seen recently from Mini with the ‘Strip’ concept.

Kia Concept EV9 dash
With an oval steering wheel and a huge widescreen display the dash certainly isn’t boring

More to come

The Concept EV9 will likely evolve into a more simply named ‘EV9’ production car that will become the second dedicated electric vehicle built under the Kia brand, which announced plans in late 2020 to build a total of seven new EVs before 2027.

Expected to share the same e-GMP platform as the EV6 midsize SUV, the production version of the Concept EV9 will go head to head with rivals such as the Mercedes-Benz EQB and Tesla Model Y if it comes to Australia.

The production version of the Concept EV9 will likely break cover in either late 2022 or early 2023 and share much of its underpinnings with the Ioniq 7 from Kia’s sister brand Hyundai.

Technical specifications will likely remain underwraps for some time but the use of the e-GMP underpinnings mean will likely see a range figure of at least 500km.

Charging is also a major strength of the platform, with most vehicles capable of topping up the battery from 10-80 per cent in 18 minutes thanks to 350kW charging speeds.

More information will likely surface next week when the Concept EV9 prepares for its first in-person showing at AutoMobility LA.

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