Kia has confirmed it will launch a battery electric version of its redesigned Soul in the US next year.

The all-electric version will be sold "in select markets" - which usually means California and eastern seaboard states with eco-conscious consumers - in 2014.

More details "will be announced at an upcoming major US auto show" - we'd expect LA in November.

“Eco-consciousness already comes standard on the all-new Soul with 85% of its materials able to be recycled at the end of its lifespan, and the Soul EV will further demonstrate Kia’s engineering capabilities as well as our commitment to producing vehicles with reduced environmental footprints,” said Orth Hedrick, executive director of product planning, at Kia Motors America.

Kia launched its Optima Hybrid in the US in 2011. The 2013 version was updated with a stronger 47hp electric traction motor, a stronger hybrid starter generator and a more powerful 47kW lithium polymer battery. 

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KIA MOTORS ANNOUNCES PLANS FOR FIRST ALL-ELECTRIC VEHICLE IN THE UNITED STATES

Electrified Version of the All-New Soul Urban Passenger Vehicle Scheduled to Arrive in 2014

 

Kia’s first EV in the U.S. will combine the Soul’s funky and iconic design with new styling cues aimed at improving aerodynamics and distinguishing it from non-EV Souls

Soul EV will be powered exclusively by a battery for gas-free driving and zero emissions

Images of the Soul EV will be released closer to launch in 2014

Minneapolis, Oct. 1, 2013 – At the media launch of the all-new 2014 Soul, Kia Motors America (KMA) today announced plans to offer an all-electric version of the company’s iconic Soul urban passenger vehicle in select markets in 2014.  Already one of KMA’s best-selling vehicles, an all-electric variant is a natural extension of the Soul’s urban-friendly place in the brand’s lineup of award-winning vehicles.  More details about the Soul EV’s powertrain, range/MPGe, packaging and go-to-market strategy will be announced at an upcoming major U.S. auto show.

 

“Eco-consciousness already comes standard on the all-new Soul with 85-percent of its materials able to be recycled at the end of its lifespan, and the Soul EV will further demonstrate Kia’s engineering capabilities as well as our commitment to producing vehicles with reduced environmental footprints,” said Orth Hedrick, executive director of product planning, KMA.  “The Soul has always been a terrific choice for drivers in urban environments, and the all-new version’s blend of technology, refinement, style, improved dynamics and value has allowed us to create a car that is as efficient as it is fun to drive.”

 

Kia Motors was recently ranked by Interbrand as one of the “50 Best Global Green Brands,” and Soul EV will be the second alternative-fuel Kia vehicle to be offered for sale in the U.S. The award-winning Optima Hybrid was introduced in 2011 and for 2013 sees a number of enhancements including numerous powertrain refinements for smoothness and drivability, including a more robust 47 HP electric traction motor, a stronger Hybrid Starter Generator (HSG) and a more powerful 47 kW Lithium Polymer battery. 

Original source: KMA