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Kia Releases EV9 Teaser Images On Twitter

Kia has shared teaser images on Twitter of its forthcoming EV9 all electric SUV that show off its shape and defining lines of its profile, as well as a glimpse of its front end. Whether you find the lines striking or not, it is certainly going to cause some stir in the marketplace as the first 3 row, mid-sized, fully electric SUV that will start at under $60,000 MSRP (actually it is expected to start around $50k).

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The EV9 is expected to debut sometime in the first quarter of 2023 (which starts next week of course) and will be Kia’s new flagship EV model. It has some impressive specs, or is expected to, for those that may not already know. According to electrek.com, It should have over 300 miles of range on a full charge and a zero-60 MPH time of around 5 seconds. The EV9 should also have 3 rows of seats (with seating for between 6 - 8 passengers). It is also likely that, like the EV6, the EV9 will have the capability to recharge at 350 kW on level 3 480V hardware and may have V2L (Vehicle To Load) capability as well.

This all sounds fantastic, doesn’t it? While no doubt it is impressive, perhaps a useful bit of context would be to compare the EV9 to any other 3 row EV SUVs out there and throw in some 3 row PHEVs for good measure. For 2022, 2023, and even 2024 as far as we know, there are only 8 3 row EV SUVs to choose from. These EVs and their starting MSRPs are: the Rivian R1S ($78,000), the Mercedes EQB ($55,000) and EQS ($104,000), Hyundai Ioniq 7 (about $50,000), the Tesla Model X ($98,940) and Model Y ($64,990), the Vinfast VF9 ($57,500 if you lease the battery, or $76,000 if you don’t), and of course the EV9 itself ($about $50,000). I should point out that the Mercedes EQB and the Tesla Model Y are really sized more like compact SUVs than mid-size models. As such, we might expect slightly less utility from them but we’ll include them here just because they can/do have 3 rows.

You may notice straight away perhaps that the Kia and Hyundai 3 row all electric SUVs are the lowest priced options. And even though the EV9 doesn’t come out until Q1 2023, and the Ioniq 7 is a 2024 model, this should assure very solid interest in these models. In fact demand for these all electric people movers may outstrip supply for years to come, or at least that is my prediction because I also think that Tesla is the only automaker that won’t struggle to make more than tens of thousands per year for at least a couple years after they go on sale.

But perhaps a mid-size PHEV SUV will be more affordable and or more desirable for people who do more local hauling than long distance road trips. There are only 5 3 row PHEV SUVs (and 1 PHEV minivan) to choose from right now. Note, the linked article doesn’t include the new Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV ($39,845) which is technically a compact SUV, but still has 3 rows of seats). These other 5 are: the Volvo XC90 Recharge ($71,900), the Lincoln Aviator Grand Touring ($69,190), the Kia Sorento PHEV ($49,890), and the Range Rover P440e ($104,900). The sole minivan PHEV option is the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid ($48,478), and while it isn’t an SUV, it certainly is an effective and efficient people mover. Otherwise, for those that insist on a 3 row SUV, the Kia Sorento PHEV is by far the lowest cost plug-in option you can buy right now. Though it will likely only come in a few hundred to about $1,000 less than the EV9, it is important to point out that for 2023 the only trim available for the Sorento PHEV is the top SX-P trim whereas the all electric EV9 will likely come in a lower specced trim for its starting price point(s), so you’ll get more features for your money on the Sorento PHEV. Another thing you’ll also get is the additional flexibility of two fuel options, electric and or gasoline. As I described in a previous article, the flexibility can amount to time savings (and even cost savings, depending on the price of electricity and or gas). If emissions impacts are more important to you, pound for pound and in like vs. like comparison, EVs will usually have lower lifetime emissions, but only by a small amount if one charges their PHEV as often as possible.

Are you interested in the EV9? Would you pick it over the other 3 row EV, or PHEV, SUVs? If so, why? Please leave your questions and comments below.

Image courtesy of Kia.

Justin Hart has owned and driven electric vehicles for over 15 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.

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