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Kia EV6 Review

10 / 10
28 May 2024
Kia EV6 driving through city

Sporty, practical, comfortable, high-tech and with a long range – the Kia EV6 does it all. It’ll even power small appliances when you’re in the wilderness.

It’s one of the best EVs currently on the market, wrapped up in futuristic styling and covered by a seven-year warranty.

What we like:
  • Quick and comfortable
  • Thoughtfully designed
  • 300-mile range
What we don't like:
  • Rivals are cheaper
  • More expensive to insure than other Kias
  • Some EVs have bigger boots

Should I buy a Kia EV6?

It’s officially time to pack away all the jokes about milk floats and golf carts. The Kia EV6 blows these lame stereotypes out of the water – not only is it one of the best electric cars you can buy, we’d say it’s up there with the best cars full stop.


Developed from the ground up as a fully electric car, the EV6 doesn’t stick to conventional car design rules. With no engine sticking out in front, the bonnet can be made shorter and the passenger space can be increased. Slim headlights at the front and an arcing full-width lightbar at the back help the EV6 look futuristic – which is a deliberate change of direction from the retro-inspired Hyundai Ioniq 5.


While the Kia looks forward and the 8-bit theme of the Hyundai looks back, the two cars are equally as cutting-edge – they share the majority of parts, including the entire platform and powertrains. But the Kia also impresses with its longer seven-year warranty and fractionally better safety score – both are five stars, but the Kia just pips the Hyundai with a 90% adult protection rating. What’s more, Kia’s impressive reputation for reliability and the EV6’s two-year service interval makes it absolutely lovely to live with.


It makes sense that the EV6 looks so modern, because the technology it offers is seriously impressive. Us talking about its 800V charging architecture might not mean anything to you, but the bottom line is that the EV6 can recharge super quickly – we’re talking 10-80% in 18 minutes, if you can find a charger powerful enough.

Kia EV6 rear

What’s more, the EV6 is one of the few electric cars that offers Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) functionality. Via the three-pin plug socket on the inside, or via an adaptor plugged into the external charging port, the EV6 can power other electricals. Maybe you’d use it to vacuum the car’s interior, take a fancy coffee machine wherever you like, or to stay powered up on a remote campsite. In fact, a fully charged EV6 could power an average family home for five days! The future really is now.


And we’re also in a future where a Kia family car boasts 580hp. The range-topping EV6 GT is a proper performance car – it’s spaceship fast, but also has adaptive suspension, beefier brakes and a limited-slip differential.


The EV6 was facelifted in 2024, with new triangular headlights and a host of interior improvements – including wireless phone connectivity and extra sound deadening.

Interior and technology

Kia EV6 interior

We’ve got the EV6 to thank for the snazzy interiors on the new Kia Sportage and Kia Niro. A pair of 12.3-inch screens take up the majority of the dashboard, but thankfully don’t mess up visibility. The right-hand screen gives you all the must-know driving information, while the touchscreen on the left deals with everything else. Both are contained within one panel, giving the interior a sleek and premium sheen.


The screens are quick to respond, intuitive to get around – there’s also voice control if you’re struggling – and fantastically sharp. They’re easy to live with and to use everyday – and easy on your eyes at night, thanks to the dark background.


Kia has also managed to reinvent climate controls. Oh no, we thought. But the slim touch panel below the screen is mostly easy and fun to use, allowing you to switch between the climate and shortcut panels at the swipe of a ‘button’. You still have to look down to use it, and you might occasionally turn on the heated seats accidentally, but we found it to be a better system than VW’s solution for its climate controls.

Kia EV6 centre console

The EV6’s interior is a riot of plush materials and beautiful, tactile touches. Just look at the shaped metal around the start button – an unnecessary but lovely flourish – and the intricate ribbing on the gear selector. GT-Line cars get suede seat upholstery for extra softness.


Meanwhile, vegan leather is available on every trim level and the GT-Line cars get premium relaxation seats.


Entry-level EV6s in Air trim are really well-equipped – they come with 19-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, sat nav-based radar cruise control, two-zone climate control and lane-keep assist, among other things. GT-Line adds a sharper body kit, wireless phone charging and privacy glass, while top-spec GT-Line S adds heated rear seats, 20-inch wheels, cooled front seats, a sunroof and automated parking assistance. There’s also a Horizon trim, which builds on the Air trim with a host of extra features for not much more money.


The 2024 facelift added a new, slightly square steering wheel with upgraded sensors for the driver assistance tech, plus built-in dashcams front and rear, a fingerprint authenticator on the centre console and wireless compatibility for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Practicality

Kia EV6 rear seats

As cars get bigger and longer, you might not have realised that the Kia EV6 is about the same length as many estate cars, at just under 4.7m. So, despite its sleek shape, the EV6 still manages to be very practical and very family-friendly.


There are acres of legroom, even if there’s a tall adult upfront, and there’s room for three people side-by-side – made easier with a completely flat floor across the back. USB sockets are built into the front seats for charging kids’ devices, and the headrests are an odd shape because they have built-in coathangers.


Headroom isn’t quite as impressive as legroom, but there’s still enough room for the majority of adults. The EV6 is almost 7cm lower than a Skoda Enyaq, highlighting Kia's prioritised style over outright boxy practicality.

Kia EV6 boot

The 490-litre boot is just about big enough for family life or a week away, and the tall floor and no lip makes it nice and easy to load heavy items into the loadbay. Fold the seats down and the available space nearly triples, provided you’re happy to load to the boot. There’s also a ‘frunk’ under the bonnet that’s useful for storing the charging cable – 52 litres on rear-drive models, and 20 litres on all-wheel-drive versions.


Every EV6 can tow a 1,600kg braked trailer and has a 100kg nose weight, making it possible to tow a medium-sized caravan. Read our guide to the best electric towcars here.

Range and performance

Two powertrains are available in the main EV6 lineup – a rear-wheel-drive version with 226hp and a dual-motor, all-wheel-drive version with 321hp. There’s a marked difference in performance, which we’ll come onto, but both use the same 77.4kWh battery. This is a big battery pack, and it gives both cars a quoted range figure north of 300 miles. A heat pump is only an optional extra, though, and cars without this will be less efficient in winter.


Charging to 80% takes just 18 minutes if you find a whopping 350kW charger, while a 50kW charger will take an hour and 13 minutes. You’ll most likely charge at home if you’ve got a driveway, and a 10-80% charge takes 7 hours 20 minutes – super convenient if you charge it when you’re asleep.

Kia EV6 GT

Even the base rear-wheel-drive version is quick, with 0-62mph taking 7.3 seconds. It’s not exactly scintillatingly fast, but Kia has you covered if you want to be pushed back in your seat away from a set of traffic lights. The all-wheel-drive version knocks a couple of seconds off the 0-62mph time, and can outsprint most hot hatchbacks and sports cars.


Kia hasn’t stopped there, though. Its halo performance model is now the EV6 GT, marked out by acid green brakes and a subtly different body kit. What you can’t see is that it produces 577hp and shoots to 62mph in just 3.5 seconds. Most Ferraris would be left in the Kia’s dust. It’s expensive for a Kia but cheap compared with a Porsche Taycan – and yes, we are comparing a Kia to a Porsche.

Driving and comfort

The EV6 has a sportier bent than the related Ioniq 5, and that means its ride is a little bit firmer. Couple that with the EV6’s slightly lower roofline – meaning a lower centre of gravity – and the Kia is slightly better to drive than the Hyundai.

Kia EV6 driving rear view

Most of the time, it’s still very comfortable. It fidgets a little on sustained poor surfaces but settles down at motorway speeds – and its clever semi-autonomous driving assistance tech makes motorway driving a piece of cake. With its long range, ultra-rapid charging and motorway manners, this is one EV that you’d be happy to take on long journeys.


It’s no one-trick pony; the EV6 won’t leave you wanting on tighter B-roads either. Body roll is nicely controlled and the instant acceleration lets you make great progress. It’s one of the best-driving EVs we’ve tested so far. The EV6’s two-tonne mass is well hidden most of the time, only making itself noticeable when you brake hard.


Luckily, Kia’s i-Pedal driving mode allows you to use regenerative braking rather than the physical discs. The level of regen braking can be adjusted using the paddles on the steering wheel and, with maximum regen strength, you’ll barely need to touch the brake pedal at all.

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