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Consumers are starting to notice the shift in the auto industry. With more and more automakers starting to produce hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles, and alternative fuel variants of their best-selling models, sooner or later, high-performance vehicles and large SUVs may soon come to an end. Sure, some of us like the racetrack or hauling a bunch of cargo, but if not a pro-racer or a family parent with a lot of after school equipment and what not to lug around, those very same vehicles lose their thrill fast. That’s why Kia Motors released its Plan S Strategy to become the dominant automaker for electric vehicles in the industry. All Kia needed to drive sales was the backing of a big name. Wouldn’t you know, J.D. Power recently wrapped up its 2021 Electric Vehicle Experience (EVX) Ownership Study.
A little debriefing on the Plan S Strategy. It’s a two-path plan by Kia Motors to take over the electric vehicle part of the automobile industry in the coming years. Intending to become the next all-electric automaker, Kia Motors has already shared its Futuron concept more than once. With Plan S, Kia will be adding 11 electric vehicles (EVs) to the lineup by 2025, with the goal of owning a 6.6% global EV market share and eco-friendly vehicles making up 25% of all sales. To do this, Kia Motors is investing $25 billion to release an electrified version of every vehicle in its lineup, also by 2025.
“I’m very pleased to present an award to Kia for highest EV ownership satisfaction in the mass market segment…As the growth of vehicle electrification continues to shape the future of the automotive industry, the Kia Niro EV represents a standout model that checks all the right boxes for owners.” - Brent Gruber, Senior Director, Global Automotive at J.D. Power
Now, what is the EVX and what does it have to do with the Kia Niro EV? Like any other study conducted by J.D. Power & Associates, the study places a focus on some facet of automobiles – reliability, technology, satisfaction, and each study has several factors to consider when scoring each vehicle. Also like all studies, this one was conducted through the use of surveys sent out to owners and lessees who have owned the vehicle in question for at least 90 days. The findings for the EVX study came from 9,632 owners of 2015-2021 model year BEVs and PHEVs between October and November 2020, and in conjunction with data from PlugShare, the leading EV driver app maker and research firm.
Rating vehicles on a 1,000-point scale, the EVX found that 95% of EV owners had a total ownership satisfaction of 900 points or more and claimed they plan to purchase another EV in the future. Of these vehicles, the Kia Niro EV ranked highest in the BEV segment with a score of 782. The factors the EVX study placed a focus on was the accuracy of stated battery range; availability of public charging stations; battery range; cost of ownership; driving enjoyment; ease of charging at home; and vehicle quality and reliability. We already know how well the Kia Niro EV does in each category, with a 112 (combined) miles-per-gallon equivalent (MPGe), an efficiency rating of 30kWh/100mi, eligible for the full $7,500 tax credit, and able to charge up in a variety of ways, including the use of 120-volt home outlets and with the installation of a 240-volt charger through Amazon.
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