Kia Motors Invests in New 800-volt Battery System for EVs
Kia Motors has reopened for business and is steadily starting manufacturing plants back up with safety measures in place. Optimistic about the rest of the year and years to come, Kia Motors has already begun to follow through with its Plan S Strategy, despite the shortcomings caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. When Kia announced the Plan S Strategy in January, the automaker had many large goals and a two-track plan – Electric Vehicles (EVs) and Purpose-Built Vehicles (PBVs). Already working towards PBVs with HMG, Kia Motors has announced two new upcoming EVs in the coming years to meet their goal of releasing 11 EVs by 2025, starting with a dedicated model in 2021. Whether it’s the Kia Futuron teased prior or another vehicle this new EV from Kia Motors has impressive specs.
When first teased, the Kia Futuron concept was one of the first EVs Kia Motors was to release. With a fresh design that also gave a futuristic feel to it with a geometric patchwork of matrix LED lighting, wide stance, and long wheelbase, it doesn’t look like your typical EV. Although a powertrain has yet to be released, we have already received some data on the capabilities of this EV, able to drive about 300 miles, give or take with regenerative braking, and can charge up in less than 20 minutes.
That last one sounds unbelievable. Sure, most plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and EVs can charge up to 80-percent in about a half-hour, with the last 20-percent taking anywhere from another two hours to a total of nine hours depending on the power source being used, for example, a standard 120V cable or a 240V power outlet, available for home installation. Completely charging the battery powering the electric motor of an EV sounds ridiculous, but Kia Motors plans to bring this technology to the masses.
The solution is an ultra-fast 800-volt battery system, and Kia Motors has begun investing in the development of an 800-Volt architecture to allow for much faster charging speeds. To put this in perspective, most EVs found on the market use a 400-volt architecture, and most EVs don’t tap into the potential of 350-kW fast-chargers. With 800-volt systems that can easily hit 250-kW emerging in popularity, making the shift to a new battery system could be the next step in developing EVs in the auto industry.
To date, the only vehicle to use an 800-volt EV battery architecture is the Porsche Taycan, but even the cheapest Taycan sports car starts around $105,000 and goes up to $187,000. Not very affordable for the average consumer. Kia Motors intends to change that with its current investment. Pablo Martinez Masip, Director Product Planning and Pricing for Kia Motors Europe, commented on the integration of this new system into the lineup.
“We want to provide European customers with the best possible value for their money, something that we are committed to with every new car…800V charging won’t simply be reserved for Kia’s flagship models…” – Masip
Models that tend to do well overseas usually find their way to American shores. With investments in the development of a new system just beginning, we probably won’t see it in vehicles for at least a few years. Whether it will be in one of the 11 models before 2025 is a good bet.
Kia Motors has always been forward thinking with alternative fuel vehicles. The Kia Futuron is the first electric vehicle that didn’t have a gas engine model come before it. Kia Motors is popularly known to do this with many vehicles, such as the Kia Optima Hybrid, the Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid, and the Kia Soul EV, to name a few. Find these and other Kia Motors vehicles at Miami Lakes Automall Kia. Keep up with all Kia Motors news when you follow Miami Lakes Kia social media.