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South Korean carmaker Kia is set to launch the EV6 electric crossover tomorrow. The new Kia EV6 is expected to go up against the BMW i4 in terms of price. Let's compare the major specs of the top offerings in the BMW i4 and the Kia EV6 lineups in India and see which one comes out on top.
The Kia EV6 in India is offered with two powertrain options - a single motor rear-wheel drive version and an all-wheel drive twin motor setup. For the sake of this comparison, we will be comparing the higher powered EV6 model against the BMW i4 eDrive40 Sport (the only i4 variant in India), as the prices of these cars are expected to be nearly identical.
The Kia EV6 AWD uses a twin motor setup (one on each wheel) that pushes out 321bhp and 605Nm of peak torque. The BMW i4, on the other hand, uses a single electric motor that powers the rear wheels and puts out 340bhp and 430Nm of peak torque.
While the BMW i4 puts out an extra 19bhp of power, the Kia's extra 175Nm of peak torque allows it to get off the line quicker. The Kia EV6 can go from 0-100km/h in just 5.2 seconds, which is half a second quicker than the BMW i4 electric sedan.
Also, the Kia EV6 has a higher electronically-limited top speed of 192km/h which is 2km/h more than what the BMW i4 can achieve (190km/h).
Kia EV6 Vs BMW i4 - Battery Capacity, Range & Charging Speeds
The Kia EV6 draws power from a 77.4kWh battery pack that helps it deliver a range of 506 kilometres on a single charge as per WLTP testing standards.
The BMW i4 uses a 83.9kWh battery pack (6.5kWh more) which allows for a range of 590 kilometres (84 kilometres more) on a single charge, the highest for any EV currently on sale in India.
The BMW i4 supports a maximum charging speed of 205kW which allows to top up its battery pack from 10-80% in just 31 minutes. The EV6, on the other hand, with its bespoke 800V electric architecture, supports charging speeds of up to 350kW, which allows for a top up between 10 to 80 per cent in just 18 minutes.
Currently, the most common fast DC chargers in India support speeds of up to 50kW and when connected to these it is still the EV6 which has a faster top up time between 10 and 80 per cent charge. While the BMW i4 takes 83 minutes to complete this task, the Kia EV6 is 10 minutes faster boosting its battery pack from 10 to 80 per cent in just 73 minutes.
Kia EV6 Vs BMW i4 - Dimensions
The Kia EV6 is 4,695mm long, 1,890mm wide, and 1,550mm tall. The BMW i4, on the other hand, is 88mm longer than the Kia at 4,783mm but is 38mm less wide and 102mm shorter than the South Korean crossover with a width of 1,852mm and a height of 1,448mm
However, despite BMW's extra length, it is the Kia that offers a 44mm longer wheelbase at 2,900mm compared to the Bavarian EV's 2,856mm. This is mainly due to the fact that the uses a dedicated EV architecture while the i4 basically uses the same setup found on the ICE powered 4 Series Gran Coupe from BMW.
The increased wheelbase, width and height (though this last factor can also be attributed to the crossover SUV design of the Kia) all contribute to a more spacious interior for those siting inside the South Korean EV.
In terms of head room, shoulder room and leg room at both the front and the back, the Kia EV6 offers that little bit extra. The Kia offers 991mm and 965mm head room at the front and rear respectively which is 21mm and 35mm more than what the i4 has to offer.
The difference in leg room is even more pronounced especially at the rear. The Kia offers 1,077m of leg room at the front and 991mm at the rear. The Kia EV6 offers 23mm more leg room at the front and 122mm more at the back compared to the i4.
The situation with the shoulder room is much the same with the Kia EV6 offering 66mm more shoulder room at the front (1,468mm) and 33mm extra at the rear (1,412mm) compared to the BMW i4.
The space in the boot is much of the same story with the Kia EV6 offering 520 litres of space and the BMW offering 470 litres. All these stats show us is that the Kia is the better offering in terms of space, especially for those who are not vertically challenged and need more space in the boot.
Kia EV6 Vs BMW i4 - Suspension & Tyres
However, don't let the extra space mean that the BMW is less comfortable than the Kia to be in. While the Kia EV6 with its sporty setup uses coil over springs to deal with the bumps and the ruts, the BMW i4 features air suspension with auto levelling for a comfy ride over the rough stuff.The BMW also rides on smaller 17-inch wheels (clad in 225/55 R17 tyres) compared to the Kia which rides on larger 19-inch alloy wheels shod with 235/55 R19 tyres.
Thoughts On the Kia EV6 Vs BMW i4 Spec Battle
The Kia EV6 and the BMW i4 are quite evenly matched in terms of specs. While the BMW is more powerful and offers a higher top speed, the Kia's torquier output allows it sprint off the line quicker. And while the BMW offers more range, the Kia's faster charging speeds mean that you'll be on your way to your destination quicker when stuck at the charging stations compared to the Bavarian EV.
However, when it comes to the space inside, the Kia EV6 emerges a clear winner thanks to its EV-specific architecture with most of the BMW's extra length being sacrificed on the overhangs due to its ICE-first shared platform.
With prices for the top-spec Kia EV6 expected to hover around the BMW i4's ex-showroom price tag of Rs 69.9 lakh, this fight promises to be one that could unfortunately be decided by the badge on the bonnet.