The Kia EV9 Concept debuts at the Los Angeles Auto Show as a preview of the next EV in the brand's lineup. It has a strikingly angular appearance on the outside but a minimalist interior with soft curves.
Kia says that the sharp-edged exterior design takes inspiration from the shapes of crystals and rocks. As an EV, it doesn't need a traditional grille opening. Instead, there's a body-coloured bar across the nose. The lights in this section aren't visible when they aren't in use. Sequential patterns of illumination welcome the driver when the person approaches. On the outer edges, there are vertical daytime running lights.
Gallery: Kia EV9 Concept
The bonnet has a vented duct near the base of the windscreen. Since there's no engine, the opening isn't necessary for cooling. For the EV9, Kia installs a solar panel there to charge the batteries a little when not plugged in.
In profile, there are slab-sided panels that angle inward at the bottom of the doors. Like many concepts, there are suicide doors, but this element is unlikely to be on the production version. The retractable roof rails are a unique touch. They move into the roof when not in use to improve aerodynamics. Cameras replace the sideview mirrors to make the vehicle sleeker.
The rear has a triangular shape for the D-pillars, and there are Y-shaped taillights. The lower portion of the rear hatchback has one of the few rounded sections of the design.
The interior of the EV9 lacks the sharp edges from the exterior. The driver looks at a 27-inch display that runs about halfway across the dashboard. A panoramic glass roof lets in plenty of natural light
The transformable cabin includes the ability to rotate the first-row seats and fold the second row into a table so that the occupants can be face-to-face with the people in the third row. Alternatively, the third-row seats can turn around so that these folks can look out the tailgate.
For greater sustainability, the cabin uses materials like recycled fishnets for the flooring. The seats contain materials from recycled plastic bottles and recycled wool fibres. Vegan leather is also in the cabin
Kia says the EV9 would be capable of driving up to 300 miles (483 kilometres) on a charge. When attached to a 350-kilowatt charger, it would be capable of going from a 10 percent to 80 percent level of charge in 20 to 30 minutes. The crossover rides on the Electric Global Modular Platform