Kia’s Compact EV3 SUV Boasts ChatGPT AI and A 372-Mile Range

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Key Takeaways

  • Kia has officially unveiled the EV3.
  • The compact SUV is Kia's first EV with an AI assistant, and offers a peak 372 miles of range..
  • It arrives in the second half of 2024.

Kia has formally introduced the EV3, and its compact electric SUV promises capabilities you won’t find in larger rivals.

The EV3 is the first electric Kia to include the AI Assistant that made its first appearance in the K4 sedan. It’s based in part on OpenAI’s ChatGPT, and reportedly provides more natural interaction as well as generative AI perks like travel planning. Other EV models will get the technology going forward.

The EV may also be a sophisticated drive despite being more affordable than existing models like the EV6 and EV9. Kia claimed a 372-mile range for the Long Range variant (with an 81.4kWh battery) on the WLTP testing cycle. While we’d expect more conservative figures with EPA testing in the U.S., that could still make it appealing to people converting from similarly-sized gas SUVs. The standard EV3 comes with a 58.3kWh battery.

Both the base and Long Range EV3 variants are front-wheel drive, with a 150kW motor capable of a 0-62MPH sprint in 7.5 seconds. Charging from 10% to 80% takes a solid if unremarkable 31 minutes.

The EV3’s interior technology is still in line with Kia’s more advanced models. It offers a raft of driver assists that include lane keeping, highway driving, and remote smart parking. It’s also the first Kia to use the brand’s latest regenerative braking system, which lets you tune the strength to the point where one-pedal driving is an option.

You’ll also find a 12.3-inch infotainment screen with quick access to games and streaming services. Drivers can even personalize both that display and the 12.3-inch instrument cluster with NBA-inspired visual themes, Kia said. You’ll get them through Kia’s online store.

Kia EV3 interior

The EV3 is also billed as the first compact electric SUV to support vehicle-to-load charging that lets you power appliances, computers, and other external devices. It uses Kia’s latest digital key system to let you both unlock and share the car with your phone.

Kia launches the EV3 first in its home country of South Korea this July, with European drivers getting their chance in the second half of the year. The automaker will bring the car to the U.S., but that’s only expected to come sometime after the European debut.

The EV3 may be the most important model in a growing Kia lineup that will span from the basic EV2 through to the three-row EV9. A compact SUV makes it particularly appealing in Europe, where larger SUVs aren’t as practical or popular. And while pricing isn’t yet available, it should be considerably more affordable than many EVs. That could help it compete against not just electrified rivals like the Volvo EX30, but conventional small SUVs like the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4.