In case you don’t recall from my first srticle, Victor has an interesting story as he wasn’t actually a reservation holder for the newly on sale Kia EV6, yet he still managed to drive one off the lot in the first few days it was on sale in the U.S. He was very lucky and here’s what he has to say after owning and driving his EV6 for the last 8 months.
After about 8 months of ownership, has anything changed about your view or appreciation of the EV6? Do you have any regrets? In the time of my EV6 ownership, I’ve come to appreciate that it really has set the bar for what to expect on long drives, fast charging, and safety features in regards to EV’s. Being my 4thEV in 5 years, I can say I’ve found the car that meets all my needs and I have no desire to shop for a new one anymore. I have no regrets outside of the markup, but it appears those are starting to die down as the federal tax credit no longer applies and more vehicles are being manufactured.
Have you taken many longer trips and if so what was your charging experience like? I’ve taken several trips including a 1,300 mile round trip. On my annual TN to NY trip, I shaved off 3hrs and one charge stop vs my old Chevy Bolt. I only needed to stop 3 times, and all were 20min or less. It’s bonkers to think we’ve gotten an EV where a 700 mile trip only requires an additional hour vs an ICE car. Electrify America is the one network I try to stick to, due to speed of charge, but they’ve been having many problems since their September update and a lot of stations are still working free but at reduced speeds. I’ve not had to wait at a charger for a spot to open up yet. I had a family vacation this summer in Gatlinburg, TN and our cabin didn’t have an EVSE, so I had to rely solely on public charging stations which worked well for the week we were there. A lot of businesses down there realize the potential and have started installing charge stations for customers.
What were your long road trips like? I no longer fret road trips with quick charge times. The EPA range estimate is super conservative. I’ve gotten over 400 miles from my trim rated for 274 staying in town and driving economically. When on road trips, I usually let the car’s HDA (Highway Driving Assist) do most of the driving. It sets the speed to the limits automatically, holds the lanes, and speeds up/slows as necessary. By using an OBD reader and the nav app ABRP, the navigation is spot on accurate for range and charge times. I let the apps do the routing set for quickest arrival time, not by most economical. The car is super quiet on freshly paved roads, but road noise does creep in when on older asphalt.
Have you started seeing more EV6s around where you live? Has anyone you know purchased one? I’ve become a co-chair for our local EV club since getting the EV6, and I’ve seen a LOT of them at local shows, events, and on the roads. I’ve made friends with other owners, but no one I know directly has switched to an EV yet due to market conditions. We had an event in Asheville this fall that had 6 in one parking lot. Twice now I’ve been able to meet with the owners of other E-GMP cars at DCFC chargers, and it's been fun seeing the Kia EV6, Hyundai Ioniq 5, and Genesis GV60 next to each other. I will say in general EV’s are getting way more popular. I’ve seen a wide, diverse amount of them on the roads.
Any plans for future EVs or plug-in vehicles? Would you buy another Kia plug-in? I’m happy with the EV6. It’s perfect. I had the tow kit installed, and I’ve got my small camper trailer that I can take with me. It still turns heads with its design and I constantly get asked about it when stopped. I would consider another KIA EV in the future, but given how great this one is, that may be a while.
Final thoughts on your decision to buy an EV6, on EV ownership, or the direction of change in how we power our personal transportation? The only issue that I’ve had was the amplifier went out. It’s a common problem for EV6 manufactured before a certain date. It’s an easy repair, but thanks to parts shortages, it was 7 weeks to get the replacement in. Most folks are saying 2-3 months to get theirs fixed as well. I think EV ownership is the way to go, but I don’t necessarily agree with governments forcing people into them. We aren’t nearly at a price point for a lot of Americans to afford these cars, and we’ve got a lot of people that rent and don’t have an option to have an EVSE at their residence. We’re moving in the right direction, but I think the infrastructure isn’t ready for it yet.
Please leave any comments or questions for Victor, or about the EV6, below.
Image courtesy of Victor S.
Justin Hart has owned and driven electric vehicles for over 14 years, including a first generation Nissan LEAF, second generation Chevy Volt, Tesla Model 3, an electric bicycle and most recently a Kia Sorento PHEV. He is also an avid SUP rider, poet, photographer and wine lover. He enjoys taking long EV and PHEV road trips to beautiful and serene places with the people he loves. Follow Justin on Twitter for daily KIA EV news coverage.