Kia EV3 makes global premiere

SEOUL: Kia's smallest electric SUV - the EV3 - made its world premiere today.

It will start rolling out in South Korea in July followed by Europe in Q4.

Malaysians will have to wait until next year to get their hands on the EV3 as it is slated for Asian markets only in early 2025.

Kia expects to price the EV3 at between US$35,000 and US$50,000 (between RM164, 360 and RM234,800) depending on trim levels. Prices will vary by regions.

The EV3's bigger siblings, the EV6 and EV9, are already on sale in Malaysia. Local Kia distributor Dinamikjaya Motors has not indicated any intention to bring in the compact EV, but it would make business sense to do so, as the EV3 would broaden Kia's EV product range and target cost-conscious consumers. It is expected to be the volume seller by virtue of being the most affordable of the lot.


Kia has been selling the EV5 in China since 2023 but from April this year is also making the model there for export to left-hand-drive and right-hand drive markets globally.

As the model numbering suggests, the EV3 is the smallest of the four and is positioned below the EV5, EV6 and EV9. It measures 4,300mm long, 1,850mm wide, 1,560mm high and has a  wheelbase of 2,680mm.

Kia’s "Opposites United" design philosophy is the foundation for continuity throughout the brand’s model range and gives the freedom for each vehicle to express its unique character.

Aiming to broaden the accessibility of electric mobility following the introduction of the multi-award-winning EV6 and EV9 models, the EV3 is a compact yet fully equipped EV SUV.


Kia says this compact model offers outstanding performance through its use of innovative technologies such as premium streaming services, in-car gaming and the first-ever Kia AI Assistant in its EV series to enable users to communicate much more intuitively with the car. The AI Assistant made its debut on the Kia K4 compact sedan.

The baby EV showcases a bold, geometric and robust exterior design while highlighting its dynamic styling.

It is characterised by an evolved Tiger Face, long sloping roofline, signature Star Map lighting and boxy rear fenders and tailgate, which imbue the vehicle with a strong, solid and futuristic identity.

According to Kia global design chief Karim Habib, the EV3's cabin was designed as a space to relax in and offers an experience that is simple and intuitive.


For example, it comes with a sliding table console between the front seats and other clever storage solutions.

Karim spoke at a virtual press conference two days earlier, along with a panel of other Kia experts and officials.

A near-30-inch widescreen display – including a 12.3-inch cluster, a five-inch air-conditioning panel, and another 12.3-inch AVN display – incorporates seamless touch operation of the climate control functionality and provides clear graphics and intuitive information to the

The screen also extends to the centre of the dashboard, giving the front-seat passenger access to entertainment and navigation features.

The EV3, EV6 and EV9 are based the same Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) platform, sharing consistency in brand design identity while standing apart from each other with their own unique features.

The EV3 uses a ternary battery pack made up of nickel, cobalt and manganese (NCM). Batteries are sourced from South Korea's LG Energy Solution.


The EV3 Standard version  is offered exclusively with a 58.3kWh battery, while the EV3 Long Range variant is fitted with an 81.4kWh battery.

Both use a 150kW/283Nm electric motor, which enables a best 0-100kph acceleration time of 7.5 seconds. The EV3’s top  speed is 170kph.

Unlike the 800V architecture found in the EV6 and EV9, the EV3 uses a lower-cost 400V system.

It takes 31 mins to fast-charge it from 0-80%.  The EV3 offers a WLTP range of up to 600km.

With a 25-litre frunk and a 460-litre rear load capacity, the EV3 offers the largest luggage space in its class.

“By providing groundbreaking design, an industry-leading electric drivetrain, and practical, innovative lifestyle solutions, the EV3 aims to extend Kia’s exceptional EV SUV experience to a wider audience," said Kia president and CEO Ho Sung Song.

"With a WLTP driving range of up to 600km and fast-charging capability, the EV3 addresses common concerns about electric vehicles. It will reassure those who may have been hesitant to make the switch to electric mobility and will lead the mass adoption of EVs.”


Kia offers the EV3 in nine body colours – two of which have been created exclusively for the new model: Aventurine Green and Terracotta.

While Kia claims the EV3 has no rivals at the moment, many in the motoring press see the EV3 wading into the same arena being occupied by the Volvo EX30 and BYD Atto 3.


Kia EV3 Highlights

1. Model Introduction: The Kia EV3 is a dedicated compact electric SUV with bold design, innovative technology, and groundbreaking features, setting new standards in its sector.

2. Design Philosophy: It incorporates Kia's 'Opposites United' design philosophy, combining dynamic aesthetics with thoughtful functionality, and features an assertive presence with a progressive, dramatic design.

3. Performance and Range: The EV3 offers a WLTP driving range of up to 600km and fast-charging capability, addressing common concerns about electric vehicles and promoting mass adoption.

4. Interior Features: The interior design emphasizes wellbeing with a spacious cabin for five people, multi-adjustable ambient lighting, ultra-comfortable seats, and a 25-litre frunk and 460-litre rear load capacity.

5. Technology Integration: It includes a near-30-inch widescreen display for climate control, entertainment, and navigation, and allows control of many functions via steering wheel buttons and a row of central screen buttons.

6. Sustainability: The EV3 uses recycled materials extensively, including PET in the seats, headliner, floor mats, and luggage board, promoting sustainability.

7. Drivetrain and Efficiency: It features a state-of-the-art front-wheel drive electric powertrain, offered with either a 58.3kWh or 81.4kWh battery, and a maximum speed of 170kph.

8. Safety and Assistance: Equipped with advanced safety and driving assistance systems like eDTVC, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Highway Driving Assist, and Remote Smart Parking Assist.

9. Innovative Features: The EV3 includes Kia's new i-Pedal 3.0 regenerative braking technology, Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) charging capability, and Kia’s Digital Key 2.0 for unlocking and starting the vehicle using a smartphone or smartwatch.

10. Global Campaign and Launch: The EV3 will be launched in South Korea in July 2024, followed by a European launch in the second half of the year, with further expansion into other regions planned. The global campaign is encapsulated by the statement ‘a moving power’.

Autos Kia