Kia took just about everyone by surprise last month when it unveiled the Concept EV5 pictured here. During the CEO Investor Day event held today in Seoul, the South Korean brand announced the production version will be launched in China in the fourth quarter of the year. When the concept was introduced, Kia suggested it would offer the purely electric crossover in other markets at a later date, but without going into any details.
During the same conference, the next-generation Rio subcompact model was announced, with production to kick off in Q4 at the company's plant in Mexico where the current car is assembled. In addition, 2023 will see the introduction of a tiny Ray EV in the third quarter. No fewer than "five product enhancement models" are planned to debut in the remaining months of the year.
Kia Concept EV5
These will likely be facelifts for existing models, with recent spy shots showing Kia is testing updated Picanto, Carnival, K5, and Sorento prototypes. Of course, the large EV9 electric SUV is also coming out this year, with a high-performance GT variant already confirmed for an early 2025 release.
In the long run, Kia wants annual EV sales to reach 1.6 million vehicles by the end of the decade, fuelled by an electric car lineup consisting of 15 models by 2027. It also wants electrified car sales to reach 55 percent (2.38 million units) in 2030 when total deliveries are projected to reach 4.3 million vehicles.
To get there, the Gwangmyeong factory will be retooled for EV production, with the short-term goal to kick off the production of two models in 2024. Kia also plans to produce electric cars in the Europe, United States, China, and India. In addition, one of the main objectives is to set up a purpose-built vehicle (PBV) business, starting with a midsize model due in 2025 from a dedicated factory in Hwaseong.