Kia: ‘We do not simply change our electric plans’

‘Ups and downs’

Kia EV3

Some car manufacturers are backtracking on their electric future plans. At Kia, however, they simply keep the power pedal pressed, although Kia also sees that the fuel car will remain relevant for the time being.

Here and there, car manufacturers are making some concessions when it comes to the transition to a fully electric offering. For example, Ford is now considering staying active with fuel cars for longer and Mercedes-Benz is also putting on the brakes on EVs. There are no such retreating movements at Kia, which hopes to take an important step towards more EV sales with the brand new EV3.

The Dutchman Sjoerd Knipping, Vice President Marketing and Product of Kia Europe, emphasizes in conversation with AutoWeek: “We do not adjust our plans to what is happening in one market. We are working towards one hundred percent electric and that can have ups and downs, but we will stick to our plan.” Knipping realizes that there is still a long way to go. He also sees an important role for the fuel engine for the time being: “We cannot all switch to EVs today or tomorrow. We really need those eleven years to get there. In the meantime, it is important that for the the traditional combustion engine remains accessible to the average consumer. Yes, we must all move towards sustainable mobility, but the reality is that it must remain affordable.”

Here in the Netherlands there is currently a lot of buzz about the government’s plans for EVs in the coming years. For example, the incoming cabinet wants to abolish the purchase subsidy with effect from next year. At the same time, there will remain an MRB discount for electric cars for the time being. Kia is not concerned about such policy changes in terms of sales. Knipping: “Whether the Dutch, French or German government considers phasing out the subsidy on EVs, on the one hand it makes consumers think, on the other hand a longer MRB discount will actually move them more towards a Bringing EV. The trick is to find the right balance.” What could help is if people start driving electrically one segment lower. Knipping sees opportunities for the EV3 in that respect: “The EV3 has a wheelbase that is as long as the Sportage. With the space that the EV3 offers, we may be able to downsize people from a Sportage to an EV3, so that the weight increase could suddenly be nil. “

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