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They mostly like it, although they seem to like the Ionic 5 interior more.

First Drive
2022 Kia EV6 Debuts With Plenty of Power and Engaging Handling
This comely new model is a stylish and high-tech addition to the EV market

Overview
The 2022 Kia EV6 is the automaker’s first electric vehicle that has been developed purely as an EV, without a gasoline-powered counterpart. The EV6 has its own unique look, driving dynamics, interior styling, and dimensions.
Even though the dual-motor versions provide all-wheel drive, this isn’t a go-anywhere SUV. It’s closer to a large hatchback or a sportback-type vehicle. Keeping true with the rest of Kia’s vehicle lineup, the EV6 has a sportier, more aggressive appearance than the similar Hyundai Ioniq 5.
The EV6’s 114-inch wheelbase (the distance between the center of the front wheels and the center of the rear wheels) is the same as Kia’s three-row SUV, the Telluride. That means that the EV6 is larger in reality than it might look in photos, and interior room is maximized.

The EV6 comes standard with forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic warning, lane keeping assistance, safe exit assist, and a driver monitoring system. All trims have adaptive cruise control, a convenience in stop-and-go traffic. GT-Line versions like our rented sample car also get surround view and blind spot view cameras as well as an augmented reality head-up display. This latter feature will project instructions for changing lanes and making turns onto the windshield when the built-in navigation system is in use.

The standard range, rear-wheel-drive EV6 Light that has an EPA estimated range of 232 miles. The long-range, RWD versions have an estimated 310 miles of range. The EV6 line is topped by the $55,900 long-range, all-wheel-drive EV6 GT-Line, which has a 274-mile estimated range. While this is the version that we rented from Kia, we will be buying an AWD EV6 Wind, which starts at $50,900 and also has a 274-mile estimated range.
While not an issue unique to the EV6, buyers should keep in mind how dealer markups will impact their purchase. The starting price of the EV6 sounds nice: about $33,000 after figuring in the $7,500 federal tax incentive. But there are so many unknowns. Will your local dealer even sell the EV6 (not all are authorized to do so)? If they do, what are they going to charge you? For example, we had to pay a $5,000 premium to get our EV6. For a consumer, that nearly wipes out the tax incentive.

Impressions
The EV6 is engaging to drive. It feels nimble, and the rear-wheel-drive bias in power delivery gives the driver the ability to have some fun by using the throttle to steer the Kia out of corners.
The instantaneous power delivery also makes it feel very quick. Still, a number of drivers noted that the EV6 lacks the continued pull of many EVs, seemingly feeling like it runs out of steam above 50 mph or so.
We appreciated that Kia makes it easy for the driver to increase or decrease the amount of regenerative braking on the fly via steering wheel paddles. For instance, you can opt for the least amount of regen and make the car feel like a normal car when driving. But when you’re coasting during a long downhill, you can squeeze the left paddle for more regen, capturing that braking energy and transferring it back into the battery.
The ride feels firm but composed, particularly compared with the Ioniq 5, some of that can be chalked up to the 20-inch wheels and tires on our rented sample. The ride was still far better than the roughest-riding EVs, including the Ford Mustang Mach-E, and the Tesla Model 3 and Model Y. The EV6 we’re buying will have 19-inch wheels and tires, which may soften the ride a bit.

Inside, we noticed that the infotainment system is reminiscent of other Kia models, but it adds a screen that displays the EV6’s range. It shows an EV6 on the road and highlights the overall range with and without the climate system in operation. It could be called gimmicky, but it’s a very clear representation of the toll that using the heat (in our case, given winter temperatures at our Connecticut test track) or air conditioning can take on the EV6’s range.
But the volume and tuning knobs double as the temperature knobs for the driver and passenger, respectively. You have to press a tiny, poorly labeled “button” with no feedback in order to switch between functions. Somehow, Hyundai figured out how to include separate controls for both media and climate functions in the Ioniq 5. In addition, some of our drivers kept inadvertently turning on and off the seat heat and ventilation controls, because their position at the leading edge of the console between the seats is a natural spot to rest your right hand while using the row of buttons below the touch screen.

With each new EV design comes a new spin on how to use all the available space. There’s no need in an EV for a big, wide tunnel that hides the transmission or drivetrain and takes up a ton of interior room. With the Kia, there is a lot of room in a shallow storage tray directly in front of and under the center console. It’s a great place to put purses and bags, and even allows larger food containers to sit flat on the floor. There are even hooks for bag handles. Of course, you don’t want anything that can slide over to the driver’s side and interfere with operating the brake and throttle.

CR's Take
The EV6 is sleek-looking in and out, and sporty to drive. Handling is athletic and the ride is firm, yet civilized. The cabin is roomy and uncluttered. The EV6 also packs impressive technology, such as an 800-volt electric architecture that allows a charging ability of 350 kW in DC-fast charging public places. It has an 11-kW onboard charger that allows owners who have installed an EV charger to charge at home on a 48-ampere circuit, maximizing speed. Optional equipment includes an augmented reality head-up display that projects the speed, turn by turn directions, speed limit signs, and advanced driving assist features when drivers use the built-in navigation system.

Styling maybe an issue, though, as the EV6’s sloping roofline and rakish design have an impact on passenger and cargo space. Hyundai’s longer, more upright Ioniq5 feels a lot more comfortable than the EV6, as if the interior has more volume. Some testers felt as if they were sitting too high when driving, because of how close they were to the headliner. That sloping roofline also cut into rear-seat headroom, even for average-height adults. And that roofline, combined with the angle of the rear hatch, cuts into cargo space as well.

Cargo space is further impacted by the lack of storage in the front trunk (or frunk), where the engine would reside. Automakers such as Audi, Ford, and Tesla carve out additional storage in this area, but in the EV6 and Ioniq 5, this area is filled with high voltage components and cooling system hardware for the electric powertrain.

Just like with the Hyundai Ioniq 5, we noticed an odd phenomenon: The rear window would get dirty after driving, particularly in inclement weather. If only there was something that could be done about it…Oh, right. A rear wiper. For some unknown reason, the EV6 (and Ioniq 5) lacks a rear window wiper, and one isn’t listed as an extra-cost option.
Our rented EV6 is the GT-Line trim, which comes with extra-snazzy materials, such as a suede seat package, special interior accent lighting, a sport design heated vegan-leather steering wheel, and alloy pedals. The general design and curved screens give the EV6 an upscale flair. But it’s not enough for a $60,000 price tag. One CR tester said the quality “doesn’t feel far off from cheaper Kia models like the Sorento.”

For example, the windshield roof pillars are plastic instead of wrapped in a softer material, there’s a lot of shiny plastic throughout, and the storage bins are unlined and have rough edges. While the front-door window sills are padded, the rear ones are not. It will be interesting to see what our Wind trim level will look and feel like, and how it compares with our Ioniq 5. Right now, the Hyundai seems like a sleek Mac computer, while the Kia is more like a gaming laptop: cool colors and graphics, but a thin feel.

And, of course, once we take delivery of our new EV6, we’ll be looking closely at how long it takes to charge it what the difference is between displayed and actual range, depending on factors such as weather and driving style. We’ll also be on the lookout to see if the Kia’s motorized charging door is impacted by cold weather or icing, depending on how much longer winter hangs around the Northeast.
Overall, based on our initial experience, we think the Kia is a viable competitor to the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Ioniq 5, Tesla Model Y, and the Volkswagen ID.4.

Warranty
All cars come with basic warranty coverage, also known as a bumper-to-bumper warranty. This protects consumers against unexpected problems with non-wear items. Powertrain warranty protects against engine and transmission troubles. Rust through, or corrosion warranty, covers rust to non-damaged components. Roadside aid provides on-location assistance in case of a breakdown and may include limited towing services.

Extended warranties provide peace of mind. Owners of models known to have worse-than-average predicted reliability can mitigate risks with an extended warranty. Generally, we recommend buying a model with better-than-average reliability and skipping this expensive add on. If you do buy an extended warranty, it is key to read the small print to understand what is covered and where you can bring the car for repairs.
 

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I wonder why it is that the reviews of the US EV6 seem more lukewarm than the EU reviews (although this is by no means a negative review). I agree about the A-pillars, though... I really miss the alcantara covers from my G70. But, I went into things knowing that I'm paying mostly for the EV powertrain/batteries and tech, so I'm content with that.
 

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With EVs, range is critical. For longer trips, you have to consider that you get a much lower range than the official range when driving 70mph. Recharging may take only 18 minutes but that is only for charging up to 80% as charging from 80% to 100% is slower. Chargers on freeways also can have longer distances between them. So you may have to charge when still having 15-20% of charge left. Finally, you also have to consider that the battery wears down a bit over the years.

The counter-argument is that many people only make these longer trips for vacations so why optimize for one or two trips a year?

I did go for the longest range with the EV6 RWD. My one gripe with the EV6 is that the interior does not feel as spacious as a Tesla 3/Y or the Ionic 5. Those cars also have a nicer sunroof but I believe I made the right trade-off.
 

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Well, if the capacitive touch for the heated/cooled seats and steering wheel bother anyone. Then the Wind edition has normal buttons and no sun roof. I just got the Wind edition AWD w/tech and was pleasantly surprised that it came with normal buttons. Not that I have any issue with capacitive touch ones, but it was not to just have physical buttons for that.
 

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Well, if the capacitive touch for the heated/cooled seats and steering wheel bother anyone. Then the Wind edition has normal buttons and no sun roof. I just got the Wind edition AWD w/tech and was pleasantly surprised that it came with normal buttons. Not that I have any issue with capacitive touch ones, but it was not to just have physical buttons for that.
Agree that the Wind edition console buttons are a much better implementation than the touch sensitive ones on the GT Line. One of the things I do not like on my Wind is the dual purpose controls for radio/hvac just not efficient and I find myself inadvertently tapping to switch modes. After 1K miles including a medium length road trip were I used L2 and L3 Electrify American charging kiosks I'm extremely pleased with the car. There are so many features packed into the car that it takes a while to learn them all. Very happy I opted for the Tech package on the wind. Love the driver assist systems and the blind spot monitor. The car is very comfortable and quiet even with 300/400 mile days, It's fast charging on DC, solid, handles well, fun to drive, very quick. If it ends up being reliable duiring the coming years it could easily end up being my favorite of all the cars I've owned and I've owned many, many cars.
 

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FWIW, the guy who sold me my EV6 in Bristol, CT was stoked because he found out that morning that he sold Consumer Reports their review vehicle (1 week ago)... didn't find out until the end of the sale.
 
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