Kia Motors has not always been one to run with the herd. Instead of participating in the Detroit Motor Show, the company has opted to unveil its electric vehicle line in the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show.
The automaker said that it had chosen the CES instead of the Detroit show because it saw that the Las Vegas show was the venue to unveil the cars. It also emphasized the electronics industry’s potential to lead the way and be the medium on the fast approaching future of the electrification of transport in the world.
The two vehicles from Kia Motors are the purely electric version of the Ray subcompact and the Naimo electric vehicle concept. The two vehicles are powered through a lithium-ion polymer battery arrays and one electric motor. The concept Naimo is able to produce 107 horsepower with 207 pound feet of torque. The top speed is at 93 miles per hour and is able to travel over 124 miles on a single full charge.
On the other hand, the Ray was the first commercially produced electric vehicle on the Korean car market. The vehicle is assembled in the same production process as internal combustion engine cars and the Korean market was the primary impetus for the car’s design and construction. This vehicle is able to travel 86 miles on one full charge using its fifty-kilowatt electric motor that produces 67 horsepower. The main fuel source is the 16.4-kilowatt hour lithium ion polymer battery array with a top speed of 81 mph.
Toyota is also unveiling a new hybrid called the NS4. The all-new design of the NS4 provides insight as to the possible direction of the car company’s hybrid future.
According to the company, the NS4 showcases the company’s commitment to the enhancement of “the safety, efficiency and convenience of future mobility for people everywhere.”
Jim Lentz, President of Toyota Motor Sales said that the NS4 “offered style that would create an emotional connection with consumers.” He clarified that this vehicle would not be the window to the next generation Prius as its design does not even give the idea it was built by the world’s biggest carmaker.
Overall, the NS4 design is a departure from the company’s simple design focusing on reliability and practicality. It recognizes that other companies are out to outperform other companies in terms of sales. The vehicle is a new midsize design that aims for greater efficiency and lower weight to power ratio in the power train of the NS4’s plug-in hybrid system. Until such time it is actually built, the NS4 still remains a design for the future, around 2015 probably.