First Drive Review: Kia EV6

Independent review by Chris Russon

4-minute read

Red Kia EV6 Exterior Front Driving

First Drive: Kia EV6

Explore the key features of the Kia EV6 in our expert first drive review

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The Kia EV6 breaks the electric car mould, coming with a futuristic design language, plenty of tech, and a practical all-electric range.


  • Electric range
  • Sharp looks
  • Advanced technology
  • Top class build quality
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The first of seven purely electric vehicles to be released by Kia by 2026 has arrived in the UK as the Korean carmaker prepares for the future with the launch of the EV6.

It's a long range crossover SUV that can travel up to 328 miles on a full charge and drives in the spirit of a true GT.

The EV6 will be available in three trim grades, and all three come with a futuristic look to the design – inside and out – and technology is to the fore with twin 12.3-inch touchscreens standard on every version as is a full set of driving aids such as lane following and an advanced cruise control system.

Powertrains and Charging

The range topping all-wheel drive version having 321bhp on tap, while rear-wheel drive cars develop 226bhp. Both have a 71.4kWh battery pack which can be recharged to 80 percent capacity in just 18 minutes from a 350kW charger.

A recharge to the same level from a 50kW charger takes 1 hour and 13 minutes, while a full replenishment to 100 percent from a 7kW home charger can be done in 7 hours and 20 minutes.

As far as cars of our time go, the EV6 has to be right at the top, and with such range, the EV6 is a rival to anything from Tesla or Jaguar in this price bracket.

On our drives in the EV6 the best energy consumption we saw was 3.8 miles per kWh, which equates to the equivalent of 128mpg – and that’s nothing to be sneezed at with electricity currently costing around 30p per kilowatt-hour.

To put that into perspective, a 100-mile trip in an EV6 would cost about £8 in electricity from a 350kW fast charger – but that’s at a premium rate because of the fast charging which saw the EV6 replenished from 72 percent charge to maximum in just over 40 minutes.

A similar recharge from a home charger would cost about half that much, which makes the cost of running the EV6 about a third of that of a petrol-engined car.

That has to be tempered by the distance it can travel on a full charge, but Kia seems to have that covered with the EV6 – for most drivers anyway.

The carmaker claims the EV6 can get from London to Edinburgh on a single charge and among the current crop of electric vehicles, its quick recharge time is one of the fastest – if the right charger is available.

The charging port is sited at the rear offside of the car under the tail lights and all versions come equipped with a five-metre Type 2-to-Type 2 charger, as well as a Type 2-to-domestic 3-pin plug charger as standard.

Equipment and Practicality

High specification GT-Line S models take things even further with a comprehensive head-up display system that projects driving information including navigation instructions on to the windscreen.

Haptic control buttons are another feature that appears on every EV6, and all in all the interior is right up-to-date and as high-tech as the rest of the car.

All versions have a state-of-the-art instrument panel which includes display screens which pop up in place of the outer dials, showing real-time images of what is in the driver’s blind spot either side of the vehicle when indicating.

It’s a proper family model with five seats and a good amount of room in the rear, while boot capacity ranges from 490 litres to 1,300 litres with further storage space available under the bonnet.

In keeping with Kia’s eco-conscious approach, vegan leather is available as an option for the upholstery.

Driving Experience

On the road, the EV6 drives with great composure, and it has performance which can surprise – especially in sport mode where it feels remarkably lively.
Chris Russon

Performance figures are 0 to 62mph in 7.3 seconds for the rear-wheel-drive versions and 5.2 seconds for the AWD models, with top speeds limited to 114mph for both.

Paddle shifters allow for variable brake regeneration settings or even single pedal operation and Kia claims that in urban work the EV6 can travel almost 460 miles when starting from a full charge.

For Kia, the EV6 is the beginning of a new range of models which could be game changers for the brand.

The Kia EV6 GT flagship also has 577bhp on tap, with a target of 0 to 62mph acceleration in just 3.5 seconds and a top speed of 162mph.

That takes Kia’s electrification programme into a new dimension and demonstrates the potential of EVs.


The EV6 is about as good as it gets in the new world of electric models and opens up fresh horizons for every motorist. Its impressive all-electric range and rapid charging times make the EV6 one of the most convenient electric cars to use, but it also comes with a sleek design and plenty of tech to ensure it's a fantastic all-round package.