Kia to introduce Carens EV and mass market EV in 18 months | Autocar Professional


With an eye on building a portfolio of 15 electric vehicles by 2027, South Korean carmaker Kia has a dedicated emerging market strategy for markets like India that will help the company attain its target of 1.6 million EV sales by 2030. 

Ho-Sung Song, Kia President and CEO told investors on Friday, that in emerging markets, two dedicated models including the Carens EV will be launched to meet diverse demands. 

The CEO informed that in 2024, the company will be launching the EV9 – its flagship brand to spruce up its EV play in India.

“The EV lineup strategy involves following up on our flagship EV models with the introduction of mass EV models, for enhanced consumer accessibility,” he said.

Sources say the company is likely to launch the Carens-based EV by the second half of 2025 codenamed KY-EV, followed by the compact mass-market SUV EV codenamed AY-EV.

Interestingly, the ICE version of the compact SUV – AY is likely to hit the roads in the first half of 2025, and the EV version is likely to follow in the festive season of 2025.

Both models are expected to bring in combined volumes of about 50,000 to 60,000 units by 2026.

“The goal for 2026 is to achieve sales of 587k units of mass EV models, accounting for 66% of total EV sales,” he added.

As for the market-specific sales strategies – in key markets, Kia will continue growth by building a full EV lineup, enhancing product competitiveness, and creating new demand using PBVs (Purpose-Built Vehicles).

“In emerging markets, we will differentiate the brand with enhanced high-quality customer experiences and respond to increasing demand by diversifying manufacturing bases,” Song explained. 

The flexible manufacturing line and ICE-derived EV are part of Kia’s plan to de-risk itself if the sales momentum for EVs does not take off.

“While short-term concerns about EV demand slowdown may exist, in the long-term, EV demand is expected to continue to grow, considering the global Co2 reduction regulations and the downward trend of EV prices,” hoped Song.  

Overall, a total of 15 EV models have been decided for its 2027 lineup. Beginning with the launch of EV3 this year, additional models such as EV2, EV4, and EV5 will be introduced in major markets, for a total of 6 mass-market models.

“The EV sales target of 1.6 million units by 2030 requires selling 1.3 million more units than in 2024. The proportion of EV sales in major markets is planned to grow from 13% in 2024 to 52% by 2030, with the Korean and North American markets reaching up to 40%, and Europe up to 79%,” shared Song, without touching upon the specifics on Indian market volumes or penetration. 

Also read: Kia global CEO targets annual sales of 4 lakh units in India by 2030, expects 10% CAGR

Also read: Indian market to remain flat in 2024, Kia to grow by 13% – Kia global CEO Song

Also read: Kia targets sales of 1.6 million EVs annually in 2030, 15 new models include Carens EV for India




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