The Kia EV5 is officially here, and while any sort of specs or details are light at this point, we have photos of the production SUV to go on. Kia took the wraps off the EV5 at the Chengdu Motor Show in China, though we fully expect the compact SUV to be sold here in the U.S., too.
Its exterior design isn’t a direct copycat of the EV9, but it certainly follows a similar aesthetic. The lighting signature up front is full of angular LED strips that Kia says are inspired by star constellations. There isn’t much of a grille to be seen, but the hood features some rather aggressive sculpting to give it added presence. Going down the side, you’ll notice a similar kick upward to the D-pillar as is evident on the EV9, giving these SUVs a similar side view. Even the wheels remind us of those seen on the EV9. As for the rear of the EV5, Kia emphasizes the spoiler as a vital aero element for added efficiency. Plus, check out the angled design of the tailgate – it’s not squared-off, but rather angles in on either side.
The interior of the EV5 is meant to be more like a “home lounge” than a traditional car interior. That point is most evident in the not-a-sixth-seat upholstered center console area. It’s a strange and unique design for a family crossover, as the passenger seat quite literally just flows right into what looks like could be a center seat at first glance. However, there is no back and no seatbelt, so it’s purely there for design reasons.
The dash itself is a wall of two large screens, one for the cluster and the other for the infotainment system. Those screens are augmented by what look to be touch haptic buttons on the center stack and physical switches for climate control below those. All of your ports, cupholders and various other buttons are even further down and on a similar plane as the strange center console area.
Kia hasn’t revealed many details, but it did say that the cabin will feature variable mood lighting and 64-color ambient lighting. The mood lighting will synchronize with your drive mode and will even change color with alerts such as a warning that you’ve exceeded the speed limit. We’re not sure what seat colors the U.S. will see, but Kia says it will offer four colors and five seat patterns globally.
Details on the powertrain, range and more will need to wait for Kia’s EV Day in October. The vehicle will launch initially in China in late 2023 and find other markets at a later date.