Kia will bring the third-gen e-Soul to the Geneva Motor Show next week. The Koreans’ updated electric car classic boasts a larger range and significantly increased torque with two motor and battery options. Kia says the e-Soul will be available in “selected European markets” this spring.
The third edition of the BEV debuted at the LA Auto Show at the end of last year. Now details of the European model have been issued just before the market release here and Kia will offer two versions, taking the Kia e Niro as a guide.
The entry-level version e-Soul has an output of 100 kW and offers a battery capacity of 39.2 kWh, which should suffice for 277 kilometres (WLTP). According to Kia, the 150 kW version with a 64 kWh battery will travel 452 km (also according to WLTP). Both variants thus offer a significantly improved range to their predecessors. According to Kia, the more powerful electric motors with 395 Nm also deliver 39 per cent more torque, which is noticeable in the 0-100 kph sprint, which the new e-Soul completes in 7.6 seconds.
This third generation of Kia’s Soul model has new cell chemistry, which is to be accompanied by a 25 per cent improvement in energy density of 250 Wh/kg. As a result, the battery pack is relatively compact and lightweight, but at the same time enables a leap in the emission-free range, says Kia. Both battery variants of the e-Soul can be charged from 20 to 80 per cent within 42 minutes.
Visually, Kia’s urban crossover remains true to its boxy shape, even though new details, lines and lighting elements are designed to add a youthful, futuristic impression. European customers can also choose an optional SUV package that extends the design of the e-Soul to include side skirts, among other things. The e-Soul is also Kia’s first model in Europe to integrate the brand’s Uvo Connect telematics system. The focus is on digital networking via touchscreen in the car and an Uvo app for the smartphone. After the introduction of the e-Soul, this technology will also be introduced in other European Kia models shortly.
Meanwhile, according to Emilio Herrera, COO of Kia Motors Europe, Europe’s 2018 sales of zero-emissions Soul vehicles have exceeded the combined sales of petrol and diesel versions. And “electrified models accounted for every eighth Kia car sold in Europe in 2018, compared to one in 10 in 2017,” according to Herrera.
Kia has not yet quoted the prices for this edition but mentioned that the electric motor and battery pack are guaranteed for seven years and 150,000 kilometres respectively. The new e-Soul will hit selected Europen markets at the end of Q1 this year, at least in continental Europe. According to Kia, the specifications, date of sale and prices for Great Britain will be “announced in due course”.
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