Kia promises to have seven electric vehicles on sale by 2026

Darren Cassey, PA Motoring Reporter

Kia has announced an update to the ‘three core pillars’ of its business, promising 11 electrified models including seven fully electric vehicles within five years.

The South Korean car maker has been ‘reborn’ in 2021, with a new logo and brand identity that will see it focus on ‘the entire mobility ecosystem’ starting with a switch from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles.

Its new promise of having seven EVs on sale by 2026 is one year earlier than originally announced in January.

Ho Sung Song, Kia President and CEO
Ho Sung Song, Kia president and CEO, speaks at the firm’s 2021 investor day. (Kia)

The company is aiming for 40 per cent of its sales to be electrified models by 2030, which would see it shift 880,000 such units in 2030.

When Kia’s first electric vehicle – codenamed CV – arrives later this year, it will have level two self-driving technology, while from 2023, its EVs will have further developments towards level three autonomous driving.

Kia is also developing a ‘skateboard’ vehicle chassis that will allow it to underpin a wide variety of purpose-built vehicles such as delivery vehicles. As part of this, it also plans to work with third parties to develop platforms for unmanned delivery and e-commerce sectors.

The firm has also revealed its future business targets, saying it expects to sell almost 2.3 million vehicles this year – an increase of 12.1 per cent on a pandemic-hit 2020. It expects this positive increase to continue, and has expanded an earlier sales forecast to predict it will shift 3.8 million vehicles in 2025.

Recent years have seen Kia’s model line-up offer more diversity, with this mix said to be one reason it has seen more profitability. With its product line-up expanding further, it expects this to continue to contribute to sales and profit growth.

In January, Kia revealed a new logo and changed its corporate name from Kia Motors to Kia, which it said was part of its move away from being focused on manufacturing and focusing more on all types of mobility.

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