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Car of the Year Awards 2024: Family Electric SUV of the Year
This class embraces a useable driving range and fast charging tech, but the best must also be hugely practical and loaded with great tech...
Kia EV6 RWD GT-Line
If cars experienced sibling rivalry, the Kia EV6 could host a podcast on it, because two of its direct rivals are close relatives. In fact, one of them – the Genesis GV60 – won this award last year, and the Hyundai Ioniq 5 is a formidable contender too.
Yet, compared with those models (and many more family electric SUVs besides), the EV6 currently offers the best combination of a great battery range, fast charging, a fine ride/handling balance and generous equipment levels for a competitive price.
Our favourite RWD GT-Line version, which has a single 226bhp motor that drives the rear wheels, can officially manage up to 328 miles between charges, and our experience suggests this will translate into 230-270 miles in real-world driving. The quicker and pricier four- wheel-drive AWD and GT versions have official ranges of 314 and 263 miles respectively.
The EV6 is one of the lower and sleeker models in this class, and you can feel that in the way it drives; it isn’t as prone to leaning in corners as the Ioniq 5 and Skoda Enyaq iV, and having firmer suspension helps it to feel more agile. Yet while that firmness might sound like bad news for comfort, the EV6’s ride is as smooth as anything in its price range. Yes, some larger electric SUVs pamper you and your passengers more, but you’ll pay a lot more.
We’d describe the EV6’s interior, with its rubberised and gloss black surfaces, as smart rather than sumptuous, but it all feels solid and our preferred GT-Line version has lots of standard kit. This includes electrically adjustable front seats, an intuitive-to-use 12.3in infotainment touchscreen, adaptive cruise control, wireless phone charging, a reversing camera and rear parking sensors.
A bigger selling point is the EV6’s spacious interior. Those in the rear seats will find more leg and head room than they would in the GV60. The boot’s a good size, too; its 490 litres proved enough for seven carry-on suitcases in our tests, and its big hatchback opening makes loading bulky items a breeze.
It’s still a close-run thing with the GV60, which feels more special inside. But the premium you pay for that car over its Kia relative has grown since last year, plus the EV6 holds its value better.
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