The car of the year, the Kia EV6, has just become available in a more affordable version, with a 58 kWh battery. We will examine what the latter can do in the particular exercise of long trips, and see where it stands in relation to the others.
The Kia EV6 is one of the electric cars that offers decent autonomy, with great promises: being able to travel easily thanks to very fast charging. Therefore, we will examine this in detail using our reference routes, as we did with the Tesla Model 3 Propulsion and the Tesla Model 3 Grande Autonomie.
The rules remain the same as always: start is at 100% battery, finish at 20%, and vehicle must run at limit speeds. We will remember the characteristics of the vehicle (range, battery, charging power) and compare them with the reality on the ground.
Taking a look at how the Kia EV6 58kWh goes on long trips, you will be able to compare it with the other vehicles that we have already faced in this exercise, to see which one best suits your needs and which one will reach you. First, a good port with the least possible limitations.
Features of the Kia EV6 58 kWh
Newly available on request, the 58 kWh Kia EV6 has a WLTP range of 394 kilometres. As you will see later, do not imagine traveling almost 400 kilometers on the highway with, autonomy melting like snow in the sun driving at 130 km/h.
If its maximum charging power of about 150 kW is not the most impressive, its charging curve is much more so, with a filling of 10 to 80% battery in 18 minutes under optimal conditions, that is, an average load power of 135 kW. This is the great advantage of its battery architecture with a voltage of 800 Volts, and this is what gives it a significant advantage over other vehicles in the same range.
To plan our reference trips, we allow ourselves to use different fast charging networks, according to which it turns out to be the most practical between Ionity, Fastned, Totalenergies and the Tesla Superchargers that are open to all.
As usual, A Better Route Planner is used to plan trips, with the default reference consumption for the Kia EV6 of 58 kWh in the rear-wheel drive version. Kia’s electric crossover will have a lot to do in this exercise, given that its consumption at high speed is quite high, and that there are still certain axles that are not very well equipped with fast charging stations.
In the interest of fairness with the various electric cars in this series, we start trips at 100% battery, taking into account that you have to pay for this filling at the average price per kWh in France, currently 0.17 euros. The Kia EV6’s 58 kWh battery then represents €9.86. We will take this cost into account when taking stock of each major trip.
Our two reference trips aim to simulate a summer vacation on the one hand and a long winter trip on the other. Initially, it will be a matter of connecting Orléans to Arcachon, for a total of approximately 530 kilometers. We then focus on the 850 kilometers in winter conditions that separate Caen from Chamonix-Mont-Blanc.
For the summer route, the parameters displayed in A Better Route Planner are as follows: 25 degrees Celsius outside temperature, no wind, arrival at a charging station with 10% battery remaining, and arrival at destination with 20% battery remaining. %. For the winter trip, it is essentially the same, apart from the weather, where we choose a temperature of 0 degrees Celsius.
The balance of the different routes
Two charges minimum to travel 500 kilometers
The Kia EV6 58 kWh asks the minimum two charges to travel the 510 to 530 kilometers that separate Arcachon from Orléans. The first option stays on the road from start to finish and requires three charging stops.
The first charge is at the Ionity station in Poitiers, 200 kilometers after the start and it only lasts 9 minutes. Indeed, charging the Kia EV6 is usually very fast: going from 14% to 50% battery is done in less than 10 minutes, at a cost of 14.40 euros.
The second charge of this journey is just 80 kilometers further, at the Poitou-Charentes rest area, again at Ionity, for a total of 21 minutes and a cost of 26.80 euros. Finally, a 13-minute recharge at Totalenergies in Saint-André-de-Cubzac is necessary to reach your destination with 20% battery. With the price per minute of Totalenergies (0.65 euros per minute), the cost of this load of 24 kWh amounts to 8.45 euros.
Therefore, counting the initial initial charge, the total price of the summer trip is 60 euros in this first case. The expected average consumption is 234 Wh/km: the total travel time is 5 hours and 30 minutes (43 minutes charging, 4 hours and 46 minutes driving).
The other possibility is to go through Angoulême and its Tesla Supercharger open to all (27 minutes of charging for 24.13 euros), after charging at the Poitiers Ionity station as was the case with the motorway journey (11 minutes for 18 euros).
Thus, this second option requires only 38 minutes of charge in two times, to travel 510 kilometers for a total travel time of 5 hours and 32 minutes. In terms of cost, it is lower than the first option with a Total of 52 euros. Consumption too, since it is planned at 215 Wh/km.
A winter trip that requires concessions
If the summer route seen above was not complicated after all, we will see that the long winter route that connects Caen with Chamonix-Mont-Blanc is not easy aboard the Kia EV6 58 kWh. Five reloads are needed, but on top of that, some parts require the driver to slow down, otherwise it’s impossible to retrieve the next loader.
The impact of the outside temperature does not seem negligible in the case of the EV6, since the first charge 190 kilometers from the start requires not to exceed 110 km/h to comply with the restrictions imposed (arrival of at least 10% of the battery).
Twenty-six minutes of recharging at Totalenergies (16.90 euros) later, direction Aire de la Réserve on the A6, where a long charge at Ionity is required before leaving (37 minutes for 35.20 euros). This is the only charge that exceeds 30 minutes, but despite this, care must be taken not to exceed 120 km/h to reach the next available charger on this direction of the highway: the Tesla Supercharger de Beaune.
It only takes 11 minutes of charging (13 euros) to reach the next Ionity station, in Mâcon, where a large 25-minute charge (28.80 euros) awaits us. The last charge of the trip will be done at the Tesla Supercharger in Saint-Julien-en-Genevois for 15 minutes (16.60 euros), which should allow you to reach Chamonix with 20% battery remaining.
Altogether these are almost two hours of charging that are necessary, five stopsfor a cost, including charging at home, which is close to the 120 euros. Travel time, including charges, is only ten hours for these 850 kilometres. The estimated consumption is 268 Wh/km, which would correspond to a theoretical autonomy of just 215 kilometers, obviously far from the promises in the WLTP cycle.
Consumption, recharge cost and autonomy
We summarize charging costs and times (including home charging) in the table below. As we go through our examples, you can visualize where the vehicle you are interested in sits in relation to others on a similar trip.
|Vehicle||summer trip cost||Summer trip charging time||Total summer travel time|
|Tesla Model 3 Unit||€36 – €49||31 minutes||5:09 a.m.|
|Tesla Model 3 Long Range||€31 – €45||13 – 25 minutes||4hrs 56mins|
|Kia EV6 58kWh||€52 – €60||38 – 43 minutes||5 hours 30 minutes|
|bmw i4||€48 – €58||22 – 37 minutes||5 hours 11 minutes|
|hyundai ioniq 5||€72||36 minutes||5 hours 16 minutes|
|Vehicle||winter trip cost||Winter Travel Charging Time||Total travel time in winter|
|Tesla Model 3 Unit||€102||1hr 42mins||9:16 a.m.|
|Tesla Model 3 Long Range||€101.3||1 hr 02 min||8:27 a.m.|
|Kia EV6 58kWh||€120||1h 54min||9 hours 59 minutes|
|bmw i4||€147||1 hr 32 min||9:08 a.m.|
|hyundai ioniq 5||€145||1hr 29min||9:14 a.m.|
The great summer trip we have chosen brings a cost for 100 kilometers between 10.20 and 11.30 euros, which is close to a thermal vehicle that consumes about five liters every 100 kilometers. This may seem high for an electric vehicle, but unfortunately this is the reality of long trips today, with sky-high fast charging prices.
In winter, with 120 euros for 850 kilometers travelled, we reach a rate of 14.10 euros per 100 kilometers, which however is possible to optimize a bit. Indeed, an offer such as Ionity Passport allows you to go from the price of 0.69 euros to 0.35 euros per kWh, but it will be necessary to charge at least 635 kWh per year to make it worthwhile (that is, two round trips of approximately 1,000 kilometres), otherwise the subscription price (215.88 euros per year) cannot be compensated.
With its small 58 kWh battery, the Kia EV6 will be compared with the Tesla Model 3 Propulsion in our exercise of long trips; the American still manages to do better than the Korean in both summer and winter.
Indeed, while the Tesla Model 3 Propulsion takes only 31 minutes and between 36 and 49 euros to travel the 530 kilometers between Orleans and Arcachon, the 58 kWh Kia EV6 takes between 38 and 43 minutes, with a cost between 52 and 60 euros.
For the winter trip, the conclusion is similar: 102 euros and 1h42 charge for the Model 3 Propulsion, compared to 120 euros and 1h54 charge for the 58 kWh EV6. Despite its much better charging curve, the Kia EV6 58 kWh does not reach its highest consumption and it even ranks behind one of its biggest competitors on long hauls.
It would be possible to optimize the charging times, but probably not enough, accepting to arrive with a small percentage of battery at each fast charging station. However, this implies taking more risks, which will sometimes be difficult to accept, especially in winter.
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