Kia on Tuesday confirmed that a production version of its Concept EV9 electric SUV will launch in Europe in 2023, but it did not discuss United States launch timing.
The automaker had already confirmed 2023 timing for the EV9 earlier this month, but it didn't clarify which market.
Kia America could not confirm to Green Car Reports either a U.S. arrival or arrival date for the EV9.
However, the concept version that debuted in November 2021 at the Los Angeles auto show had some strong hints that it previewed a future U.S.-market vehicle. Its mid-size format and boxy, upright look echo the current Kia Telluride, one of Kia's hottest sellers in the U.S.
Kia Concept EV9
Kia recently revised its EV plans to include 14 new models by 2027, compared to the previous plan for 11 models by 2025. A pickup truck will be among these new models, Kia confirmed earlier this month.
Parent Hyundai has its own plan to introduce 11 electric models for its main brand and six for its Genesis luxury brand by 2030. Hyundai also previously said it would start building EVs in the U.S. in 2022.
This is worth keeping in mind because one of Hyundai's new EVs will be the Ioniq 7, an SUV of similar size to the EV9. Hyundai has said the Ioniq 7 will launch in 2024, and if the two are both built together in the U.S, that might help explain why U.S. launch timing might be different.
However, Kia and Hyundai are rolling out EVs at different paces in the U.S.—partly because Kia's U.S. dealership network got a head start.