Published on October 10th, 2022 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
KIA EV6 Malaysian City Test Drive Review
Has the KIA EV6 got more to offer than the much talked about Tesla Model Y?
Since the removal of all import duties on electric cars in Malaysia, the demand has been surging (only with buyers from the upper middle class and the rich of course) simply because there has never been a year when our government removed import duties on cars in Malaysia (Langkawi and Labuan are duty free islands).
This move and also the awarding of electric car approved permits to PEKEMA jump started the importation of electric vehicles, all kinds and types into Malaysia in the last year and the biggest beneficiary has been Tesla.
From Japan, the United Kingdom and even Australia, brand new Tesla’s of all types have landed and sold by the hundreds (without factory warranty and after sales) to Malaysians that want to be part of a new ‘trend’.
Meanwhile, authorized Malaysian car distributors and their ‘parents’ have worked hard and quick to introduce shiny new electric cars with full factory warranty and after sales at attractive prices.
Porsche was the first with the Porsche Taycan, followed by Volvo, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. Then came Hyundai with the award winning IONIQ5 and more recently, its engineering sibling, the KIA EV6.
The EV6 is Kia’s first car to be based on the company’s dedicated new architecture for electric vehicles (EV).
The EV6’s cabin benefits from class-leading interior space and passengers are greeted by a lean, minimalist dashboard architecture that emphasizes the cabin’s remarkable sense of space. This is why we are comparing it to a Tesla Model Y which is also a spacious vehicle.
The EV6’s flat floor provides rear seat occupants with 990mm of legroom for exceptional space and comfort. For front passengers there is a roomy 1,078mm of legroom on offer.
With its 2,900mm wheelbase, the EV6 is longer than the Sorento SUV which is arriving in Malaysia very soon. This results in cabin space on par with many mid-size SUVs.
Interestingly, the cabin is trimmed in a range of sustainable materials, with seats that are slim, lightweight, very comfortable and trimmed in vegan leather. Sections of the dashboard and centre console are covered in recycled plastics, equivalent to 107 plastic 500ml water bottles per car.
All of the EV6’s primary controls are located within easy reach of the driver for an intuitive driving experience. The vehicle’s space-saving Shift-By-Wire gear selector is conveniently placed alongside the EV6’s starter button on the centre console, while the sleek steering wheel integrates key ADAS switches for quick and easy driver use. Touch control switches on the screen and steering wheel have a smartphone-like feel.
There are a few variants from the factory and KIA Malaysia has decided on the just one, the GT-Line variant, which is powered by a dual-motor AWD setup and a 77.4 kWh battery.
This drivetrain offers a possible impressive range of 506 km on a single charge. Like the IONIQ 5, the EV6 is built on the Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), which means it has an 800V architecture that supports ultra-fast DC charging of up to 350 kW. Based on the spec sheet provided, charging from 10 percent to 80 percent takes just 18 minutes.
So, how does it drive? Well, from ignition the two 12.3-inch screens provide a wealth of information and are feature filled. You will need a few days or a week with the EV6 to get acquainted with all the features.
The infotainment system offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, multi-Bluetooth connectivity and a powerful 14-speaker Meridian surround audio system that shames cars costing 2 times more. There is also wireless smartphone charging, two 12V power sockets and four USB-C ports for all passengers to be occupied.
The battery delivers a smooth and buttery acceleration time of 5.2 seconds with its 320hp and 605Nm of torque and has a top speed of 185 km/h.
More importantly, this is more a luxury premium vehicle that can stand side by side with vehicles costing more than double its price. Yes, it is very comfortable and all touch and feel points have a premium feel to the touch.
When on the move, the ride comfort is supple and the sound insulation in the cabin is great. This is KIA at its finest and RM300k buys you a premium vehicle, plus it is all electric.
On top of all that, it looks really great and attracts attention at every traffic light and junction. Take a test drive to better understand how KIA has matured.
KIA EV6 GT Specifications
Powertrain: Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor
Battery Capacity: 77.4kWh
Range: 424km (WLTP)
Charge Type: Type 2 (AC) and CCS2 (DC)
Min Charge Time: 8.0 hours (AC) and 16 mins (DC)
Transmission: Single Speed Reduction Gear
Max power: 320bhp
Max torque: 605Nm
Top Speed: 185km/h
0-100 km/h: 5.2 seconds