Kia and Hyundai are known to have very efficient electric powertrains. Now, with the new 2018 Kia Soul EV, Kia increased its efficiency even more, this is especially surprising considering the bad aerodynamics of this electric car.
While the battery capacity increased just 11 % from 27 to 30 kWh, the range increased 22 % from 148 to 180 km in the South Korean test cycle, which is very similar to the one EPA uses in the USA and it’s very reliable.
There is still a thing that I would like to see tested. Considering that the battery nominal voltage increased from 360 to 375 V, I expect a minor increase in the fast charging rate – not only in 100 kW DC fast chargers but also in 50 kW. Usually electric cars reach DC fast chargers current limits (125 A in 50 kW chargers), but not voltage (500 V). Yet, even if the battery nominal voltage increased, it’s not certain that the charging voltage was also increased.
To finalize, we should start to see the 2018 Kia Soul EV reaching North America and Europe in late summer, around September.