Kia and Nio Targeting Low-Cost BEVs by Year's End

Kia reveals detail images of entry-level EV3 while Nio's affordable sub-brands set sights on European markets.

Paul Myles, European Editor

May 7, 2024

1 Min Read
Kia EV3 BEVa
Kia's EV3 compact SUV hopes to increase appeal of BEVs.

South Korean brand Kia publishes teasing detail pictures of its entry-level battery-electric compact SUV ahead of its global reveal by the end of the month.

The automaker says it wants to “enhance the accessibility of electric mobility,” presumably code for the EV3 to be comparatively affordable in a bid to reverse market trends of a slowdown in BEV take-up.

What we do see from the image are design features lifted from the brand’s flagship BEV SUV, the EV9, such as boxy rear fenders, tailgate and wheel arches. The automaker says the car promotes its ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy that is providing continuity throughout its model range.

While smaller than its larger BEV siblings, Kia says the EV3 will be a “comprehensively equipped EV SUV that offers outstanding performance through its incorporation of innovative technologies.”

Meanwhile, swap-out technology pioneer Nio tells Reuters that its two sub-brands, Onvo and the urban-focused Firefly, are heading for European markets with one model set to sell next year for less than $30,000.

During a France-China business forum in Paris, coinciding with President Xi Jinping’s talks with French President Emmanuel Macron and EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen, Nio’s general manager in France, Nicolas Vincelot, reveals the plans saying: “Nio is currently working on the launch of new car brands, that would be less premium, still obviously 100% electric, and more suited for the European market needs.”

At the same time, Onvo goes live this week and Vincelot says its L60 sub-premium product will be unveiled by the end of May ahead of coming to market later this year, with the Firefly car expected to begin production in 2025. Spy shots of the Firefly city car show a compact 4-door hatchback style vehicle seen in several Chinese media outlets.

About the Author(s)

Paul Myles

European Editor, Informa Group

Paul Myles is an award-winning journalist based in Europe covering all aspects of the automotive industry. He has a wealth of experience in the field working at specialist, national and international levels.

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