The 7-seater Kia EV9 is as heavy as three Picantos and is also colossal in every other respect. With its range, its charging time, its space and its price.
In the past, you had to go to the German car brands for innovations. But since the rise of the electric car, it is mainly the brands from South Korea that keep coming up with innovative technology. Come on has an impeccable track record to date. First it came with the e-Niro (2019), which was relatively affordable and had a large range. Dutch motorists pounced on the car like hungry wolves; Partly thanks to the plug-in version, the Niro was the best-selling car in the Netherlands in 2020 and 2021.
In 2021 the Let's EV6 an impressive new calling card for the electric car. Thanks to a charging power of 240 kW, you could charge its large battery pack from 10 to 80 percent in less than 18 minutes. The range of 528 kilometers was also impressive.
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Now Kia is taking the next step with the EV9. There will be two versions. The cheapest has rear-wheel drive, a 204 hp electric motor and a range of 563 kilometers. The strongest EV9 has an extra electric motor, four-wheel drive, 384 hp and a driving range of 505 kilometers. Fast charging is possible at 210 kW, which is slightly slower than the EV6. If you take fifteen minutes for fast charging, you will get an additional 249 kilometers in the EV9. Charging the battery from 10 to 80 percent takes 24 minutes.
The EV9 has mastered a new trick. If it is up to Kia, it will soon play an essential role in the power supply. Thanks to V2G (vehicle-to-grid) technology, the car becomes part of the electricity grid, because it can directly supply energy back. Don't underestimate how much energy is involved. When the 99.8 kWh battery is charged, the Kia EV9 provides enough power to keep a household running for 5 to 10 days.
Star designer Karim Habib, who previously worked at BMW worked, signed the Kia EV9. He came up with a daring design, an enormous box of blocks with round shapes here and there for contrast. It is certainly a matter of taste, but we appreciate the courage of the Canadian.
The EV9 meets a need. The MPV was a solution for large families; cars like the Renault Espace or Chrysler Voyager were spacious and practical. But the much less handy SUV has relegated all MPVs to the eternal hunting grounds. What do you do with children's parties, the away games of your football team or the transport of your own large brood to the Sunday church service?
Mass transport can now also be done electrically and in the superlative. The Kia EV9 is available with six or seven seats, spread over three rows. It is over 5 meters long and has an immense wheelbase of more than 3 meters. This ensures that, if you are not too tall, you can even sit quite comfortably at the back. The six-seater version (GT-Line only) has swivel seats in the second row that can rotate 180 degrees when the car is stationary. This option costs 1000 euros.
Everything is big about the shameless Kia EV9. Its 99.8 kWh battery pack, for example. But its mass of 2564 kilos is also impressive - for EV9 drivers it is hoped that the road tax for electric cars in 2026 will be determined on the basis of the vehicle weight without the battery. That saves 566 kilos. The luggage compartment of up to 2393 liters is just as impressive, you almost have to use a sniffer dog to find your suitcase. And then under the hood there is also a frunk of 90 liters (RWD) or 52 liters (AWD) for even more stuff.
The Kia EV9 is an asshole of a car and with its dimensions you will not make good friends in cramped Dutch city centers. Maneuvering is an exercise in calming your nerves, while a line of honking taxi drivers and grumpy DHL delivery people forms behind you. The clarity is poor, the B-pillar is so large that it blocks your view of the blind spot. To compensate for this, the EV9 has cameras in the blind spot and shows the images in the instruments, fortunately you can rely on that.
The interior mirror may have been invented by Hans Klok, because it can do a trick and has both an analogue and digital mode. We are normally not fans of the latter, but it is useful in the EV9. The camera is mounted at the back of the car, giving you a better view of the traffic behind you. In the regular interior mirror you have the feeling of peering through binoculars, because the distance to the cars behind you is so enormous. Digital exterior mirrors are available in many countries, but Kia does not yet offer them in the Netherlands.
Finally, you should not have too high expectations of power consumption in a car weighing almost 2600 kilos. That is high even according to WLTP standards, at 22.0 kWh/100 km. In practice, you have to do your best to actually achieve that.
Brace yourself. The basic version of the Kia EV9 has a price of 67,995 euros. This is a rear-wheel drive version with 204 hp. If you want 4WD and 384 hp, the Kia EV9 Launch Edition GT-Line is your only option for the time being. The price then rises to 78,895 euros. If you want to pick up your new car from the dealer, the celebration is dampened by a stingy side from Kia: you pay 40 euros extra if you want to take your 80 grand car with a full battery.
If that scares you and you still want an SUV of more than 5 meters in length, you can also visit Range Rover first. They ask at least 146,624 euros for their 5.05 meter long colossus. Seen in that light, the EV9 is a bargain. Moreover, you can laugh at your Belgian fellow EV9 driver, because he pays a price of 80,890 euros for his Kia EV9 GT-Line.
The only real competitor to the EV9 comes from China and is the electric one Hongqi E-HS9. The Chinese win the peeing contest; the luxury brand for communist party bosses is no less than 5.21 meters long. The price of the Hongqi E-HS9 is 69,995 euros. You get a smaller battery (84 kWh), but more power (436 hp).
Kia is resolutely putting an end to the image that cars are becoming increasingly similar. The Kia EV9 is immodest and daring, but also has innovative technology. It can supply power to the electricity grid at times when the sun does not shine or the wind does not blow enough. It is a spacious car for families of seven people, even in the very back you can sit (relatively) royally. Courage must be rewarded and that is why it would be great if the EV9 became popular in the Netherlands and Belgium. But the Kia EV9 is heavy, thirsty and clumsy to use. And the price is ambitious…
This post was last modified on November 8, 2023 9:13 am
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