Kia To Expand Soul EV Sales to Five More States
Kia has sold on average nearly 100 Soul EVs per month since its introduction in October 2014. Those sales were in California, its only market so far. In an effort to expand sales, Kia announced last week that the Soul EV, offering 93 miles on a single charge, will become available in Georgia, Oregon, Washington, Texas and Hawaii as early as June.
Orth Hedrick, vice president of product planning for Kia, characterized the Soul EV sales strategy as “progressive and pragmatic.”
Kia cited demand for EVs in those states, supported by abundant public charging stations, as the reason for the expansion. The exact dealerships to be certified to sell and service the Kia Soul EV in the new markets will be announced closer to the on-sale date. Kia promised additional markets coming online in 2016.
The Kia Soul EV has an undeniable quirky charm. Interior visibility is vast. There is ample cargo and passenger room. The overall package combines a small hip design, with a generous amount of everyday utility.
In terms of range, the Soul EV has a slight edge over the pack of small electric cars—which commonly have 21 to 24 kilowatt-hour packs. Kia goosed up the size of the Soul’s pack to 27 kilowatt-hours, effectively offering another 10 to 12 miles of range compared to the Nissan LEAF or Ford Focus Electric.
The starting price of the all-electric Soul EV is $34,500 (including destination charges). That puts the Soul EV in direct competition with the Nissan LEAF, Volkswagen E-Golf, and Ford Focus Electric. Any differences in pricing between the leading models will largely come down to the relative trim and option packages offered in these battery-powered models.
Sales of the Soul EV in the new states are set to begin during the second quarter in Georgia, followed by the remaining additional states in the following weeks.
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