Kia’s £30,000 electric family car: New EV3 unveiled and the 600-mile SUV could be one of the cheapest in Britain

The Kia EV3 production model has been unveiled and looks very similar to the concept car unveiled last year

Kia – the brand that conquered the electric vehicle market with its best-selling and award-winning EV6 – has unveiled its new EV3 model aimed at the lower-priced end of the market.

The smaller and cheaper EV3 will enter the compact SUV market as a spacious five-seater with ‘best-in-class battery range’.

The exact price is yet to be confirmed, but Kia is targeting £30,000, which could make it one of the most affordable electric SUVs for families in Britain when it lands here in November.

The Kia EV3 production model has been unveiled and looks very similar to the concept car unveiled last year

The Kia EV3 production model has been unveiled and looks very similar to the concept car unveiled last year

The EV3 will join the EV6 and flagship EV9 in Kia's bespoke EV build programme, offering a compact crossover, versatility and style for around £30,000

The EV3 will join the EV6 and flagship EV9 in Kia’s bespoke EV build programme, offering a compact crossover, versatility and style for around £30,000

The Kia EV3 is the third model in the Kia ‘EV’ range, which uses the same bespoke electric platform and ‘Opposites United’ design ethos as the larger and more expensive EV9.

In fact, the EV3 borrows most of its styling and technology cues from the huge £65,000 premium electric SUV.

It’s sculpted, boxy and has a dominant, upright stance, with the Kia ‘Tiger Face’ front and ‘Star Map’ lighting concept.

In terms of design, a lot of emphasis has also been placed on making the car as aerodynamic as possible to increase its range.

As such, the windshield is angled and slopes dramatically. And 80 percent of the underside is covered to reduce drag.

Under the bodywork there is a choice of two battery sizes: 58.3 kWh or 81.4 kWh.

The base model comes with the 58.3 kWh Standard Range battery and an electric motor that produces 201 horsepower. It accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.4 seconds and offers a range of 400 km.

The 81.4 kWh Long Range battery also produces 201 hp, but is slightly heavier and slower; 0 to 100 km/h in 7.7 seconds. But as it says on the tin, the range has been significantly improved: up to 600 km on a single battery charge.

A GT-Line has also been announced, joining the 'Standard Range' and 'Long Range' options

A GT-Line has also been announced, joining the ‘Standard Range’ and ‘Long Range’ options

Kia has modeled the EV3 on the EV9, retaining the very boxy look, Kia 'Tiger Face' front fascia and maximizing aerodynamics for ultimate range

Kia has modeled the EV3 on the EV9, retaining the very boxy look, Kia ‘Tiger Face’ front fascia and maximizing aerodynamics for ultimate range

Both cars can be charged ultra-fast, with the Standard Range able to connect up to 102 kW and the Long Range up to 128 kW.

What does this mean in basic English? Essentially, a 10 to 80 percent charge can be delivered in just half an hour.

Conveniently, the EV3 has vehicle-to-charge or bi-directional charging with V2L, V2H and V2G capabilities, so you can power a variety of electronic devices from the car’s battery pack.

It has a mushroom interior (and we’re not talking about the color)

Kia has created four exclusive paint colors for the EV3 – Aventurine Green, Frost Clue, Terracotta and Shale Gray – and nine colorways in total.

According to the Kia toppers, the interior follows a ‘nature-inspired aesthetic to enhance well-being’, with a lot of attention to recycled and inventive materials, some of which are grown from mushrooms and natural fiber weaves.

In total, Kia says there is 28.5kg of recycled material. There’s even a QR code on the dashboard that you can scan and read about Kia’s sustainability, if you wish.

Technology is a major focus with the EV3 and carries over much of that from the EV9.  There are some buttons, but it is mainly minimalistic.  There are two 12.3-inch screens, a head-up display and ChatGPT voice assistance

Technology is a major focus with the EV3 and carries over much of that from the EV9. There are some buttons, but it is mainly minimalistic. There are two 12.3-inch screens, a head-up display and ChatGPT voice assistance

The interior should be a 'living space' with a center console with two tiers: it can store a small backpack and the upper part is an extendable sliding top that can also serve as a work table

The interior should be a ‘living space’ with a center console with two tiers: it can store a small backpack and the upper part is an extendable sliding top that can also serve as a work table

Kia has made sustainability a priority: the interior uses 28.5 kg of recycled materials with recycled plastic, fabric and biodegradable paint to name just a few materials

Kia has made sustainability a priority: the interior uses 28.5 kg of recycled materials with recycled plastic, fabric and biodegradable paint to name just a few materials

At 4,300mm long, 1,850mm wide and 1,560mm high, there’s plenty of room for five people to fit comfortably. This makes it comparable in size to the Volvo EX30 and Smart’s #1.

Kia says the interior “exudes an attractive living atmosphere” and you can customize it to your own comfort by reclining the seats and extending the center console, which has a nice sliding top that doubles as a work table.

The lower part of the console is large enough for food and drinks and even a small backpack, there is a 25 liter luggage space (front) and 460 liters of luggage space in the rear.

The luggage board is adjustable with two levels, with a height of 140mm for play, ideal for family holidays.

The luggage compartment offers 460 liters of cargo space in the rear.  The luggage board is adjustable with two levels, with a height of 140mm for play, ideal for family holidays

The luggage compartment offers 460 liters of cargo space in the rear. The luggage board is adjustable with two levels, with a height of 140mm for play, ideal for family holidays

There is a 25 liter luggage compartment (front) that can accommodate the AC charging cable.  The EV3 can charge DC ultra-fast from 10 to 80 percent in about 31 minutes

There is a 25 liter luggage compartment (front) that can accommodate the AC charging cable. The EV3 can charge DC ultra-fast from 10 to 80 percent in about 31 minutes

The interior technology is typical Kia EV with minimal buttons (there are still a few on the steering wheel, a few on the center console and on the door cards) and the same 12.3-inch screen as in the EV9.

It is accompanied by a 5.3-inch touchscreen with climate control, a 12.3-inch digital display and also a 12.3-inch head-up display. Not to mention the built-in Netflix and YouTube apps – the first Kia to get these options for streaming while you charge, which Tesla is already known for.

Kia wants the interior to be ‘tech-rich’ and it’s hard to see how they could have packed more into it.

It even comes with ChatGPT voice support (although we’re not sure anyone will actually want to use that). And expect a list of safety assistance features as long as a driver’s arm.

Full specs have yet to be confirmed, but a mid-range GT-Line (and likely a GT-Line S like the EV6 trim) will be released later, along with full pricing and delivery times.

Currently, the MG ZS EV is the cheapest electric SUV you can buy in the UK, priced from £30,495.

If the better equipped and more stylish EV6 can undercut this Chinese rival, it could be a real winner.

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