Currently reading: Kia to expand EV lineup with city car and crossover
Jeep Avenger and VW ID 2 rivals feature in brand’s major EV expansion with models from EV1 to EV9

Kia has committed to expanding its line-up of small electric vehicles in the coming years – including a new electric city car and a compact crossover – as part of a wider ramp-up of its bespoke EV-branded model range. 

The Korean firm will launch 15 new electric models globally by the end of 2027, which includes a major focus on the European market, with a goal of growing electric sales by nearly a third in the next seven years. 

Although Kia will continue to offer multi-powertrain models such as the Niro – which can be equipped with electric, hybrid and plug-in hybrid powertrains in the UK – it is also expanding its line-up of EV-branded models. 

Kia to build small electric cars in Europe

The current offering includes the Kia EV6 crossover and flagship EV9 but will eventually expand into a complete range of vehicles, with heavy hints it will span from EV1 to EV9. Kia Europe marketing chief David Hilbert confirmed the brand will “have coverage in all major segments”. 

Kia ev5 rear three quarter

Kia recently revealed a concept version of the EV5, a C-segment SUV that sits between the Kia Niro EV and the EV6. While it will be initially launched in China, the model will be sold in Europe in the coming years. But a key focus for Europe will be models smaller than that – in particular a compact crossover that would rival the Jeep Avenger and Peugeot e-2008 and could carry the EV3 name. 

Hilbert noted that the B-segment SUV market is now “the largest segment in Europe”, making it vital for the brand. The Hyundai Motor Group, which owns Kia, is working on a successor platform to the advanced E-GMP architecture that underpins the EV6 and EV9. 

This could be adopted by future small models, potentially allowing for new battery technology that would help to reduce costs. Kia is planning to produce “small and mid-sized EVs” from 2025 at its Slovakia factory, currently home to the Kia Ceed and Kia Sportage families. 

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Although there is no confirmation, the EV5 would be likely to fit with that plan. Hilbert said Kia remained committed to offering hatches and saloon cars in future. 

“All the major segments will be covered in some form [by 2027],” he said. “We’ve got an existing model range with things like the Ceed family in the C-segment and those are important segments for us now and in the future.” 

Kia ev1 side

Below that, Kia intends to remain in the entry-level A-segment market. It currently offers the combustion-engined Picanto and will launch a new version of that model this year. 

The firm says it will stay committed to the sector as it electrifies its line-up, suggesting an eventual EV1 would rival the likes of the forthcoming Volkswagen ID 2 and be twinned with an entry-level Hyundai i10 successor.

James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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tuga 19 June 2023
That Autocar " projection " of what a EV1 could look like is completely ridiculous.

Also, the Picanto ( and thus, the EV1 ) is a class below the VW ID2 ( ie, the Polo )