Kia wants to prove to the world that you can have very high performance without paying a premium

Kia is set to introduce 11 new electric models in the next five years, most of which will probably be based on current models, but the next one that’s coming will pack quite a punch. Its next EV is due to arrive in 2021 (probably as a 2022 model) and should be based on the Imagine Concept. So, you can expect a coupe-SUV of sorts, but one that’s probably not quite as ugly as the BMW X4 or X6 or their Mercedes-branded counterparts. There’s a twist, though: Kia is dedicated to making it a high-performance halo car.

Kia EV Halo Car - The Model That Could Bring Shame to BMW, Mercedes, and Tesla

Kia Wants to Do the Impossible, and It All Starts With Its Next EV - A Halo Car
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Kia blew our mind when it released the Stinger a few years back. It was a perfect example of how the brand and improved over the years, and when I compared it, in person, to the BMW 5 Series at the Chicago Auto Show, I had to admit that it was a little more comfortable. Well, Kia is at it again, and this time it’s taking on the EV market with the hope of proving that a halo car with extreme performance doesn’t have to carry a back-breaking financial burden.

In an interview with Autocar, Kia’s Marketing Chief, Carlos Lahoz, elaborated on the brand’s upcoming halo car:

Kia Wants to Do the Impossible, and It All Starts With Its Next EV - A Halo Car
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“This car will have a significant effect on how consumers perceive Kia and its part in future electrification. We want it to demonstrate super-high performance levels, but in a package that is different.”

In that statement, he’s referring to differentiating the halo car from the “A-segment, B-segment, and high-end electric cars currently on the market. “ “We want something different,” said Lahoz.

Apparently, the new halo EV will sit on a brand-new, bespoke platform that will be shared with sister brand Hyundai. In other words, this halo won’t be a one-and-done like the Stinger. Hyundai, for example, will be able to build its own halo model of sorts. It will also open the door and lay the groundwork for a range of larger, more powerful SUVs and sedans in the future.

Kia Wants to Do the Impossible, and It All Starts With Its Next EV - A Halo Car
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The trick is that Kia doesn’t want to price itself into the premium segment, with Lahoz making it clear that while the new EV will be priced as a Halo car, it won’t tiptoe into the premium price range:

“ We are not a premium brand, we are a mainstream brand, and we have to be true to that heritage. This car will be a halo and be priced as such, but it will demonstrate that you can get very high-performance levels without having to pay the premium prices of, for instance, Tesla, BMW, or Mercedes.”
Kia Wants to Do the Impossible, and It All Starts With Its Next EV - A Halo Car
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So, with all of that said, it looks like the future for Kia could be very bright. The worst mistake the company could make would be to start moving into the premium territory. Acknowledging that it’s a mainstream brand at least helps to alleviate the potential for this to happen. All that remains to be seen is just what “very high performance” means to a brand like Kia and if the brand really has the know-how to cast shade on premium electric models from brands like Tesla, BMW, and Mercedes.

Source: Autocar

Robert Moore
Editor-in-Chief and Automotive Expert - robert@topsped.com
Robert has been an auto enthusiast his entire life. He started working cars at a young age, learning the basics from his father in the home garage on the weekends. As time went on, Robert became more and more interested in cars and convinced his father to teach him how to drive when he was just 13 years old. Robert continued working on cars in his free time and learned as much as he could about engines, transmissions, and car electrical systems, something that only fed his curiosity more and eventually led him to earn a bachelors degree in automotive technology with a primary focus on engine performance and transmission rebuilding.  Read More
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