Kia has dropped "Motors" from its name, designed a new logo, and announced last week an ambitious plan to become the global leader in electric vehicles, with seven dedicated EVs planned by 2027.
The changes reflect the plans of the South Korean automaker to develop into much more than just car production and sales in its next iteration. Kia's brand showcase last week emphasized new high-tech products and a new design language highlighted by the simpler name and new logo rolling out through early 2022, according to Automotive News.
The logo takes on a more futuristic slant instead of the outgoing block letters captured in a circle.
Kia's brand overhaul was underway before the announcement. Last year, Kia changed the name of the Optima in the U.S. to the 2021 K5 mid-size sedan as it's known in other markets. It's rumored that the Sedona minivan could adopt the global name of Carnival for the 2022 model year.
Kia EV teaser
More significantly, the first of seven dedicated electric models debuts later this year. The crossover is expected to have a range of about 300 miles with 20-minute DC fast charging, according to Green Car Reports. The forthcoming model will stand on its own, and won't be an electric version of an existing model like the Kia Niro EV and Kia Soul EV. Instead, the debut and the subsequent electric models will use an electric platform developed by parent Hyundai to be used in Genesis and Ioniq models, as well as by Kia.
Kia emphasized the platform technology can be used in other applications beyond passenger vehicles, such as in delivery vans and transporters. The other electric vehicles teased last week include a sedan and SUV, all in an effort to generate 500,000 global EV sales annually, as early as 2026.