The Korean firm continues to develop its range of “specially designed electric vehicles” (PBVs), anticipating how many it will sell by 2030. KIA wants to continue being one of the best-selling vehicle companies among individuals. Now, their vision for the future also includes new mobility alternatives. To do this, they will seek to position themselves as the world’s leading company in the so-called “specially designed electric vehicles” (PBV, for its acronym in English). But what exactly are these types of vehicles?
The PBVs are vehicles that the brand offers the client with a minimum level of elements so that it is the user himself who adds specific components to make it better adapt to the work he is going to perform. First of all, KIA hopes to open up a market in the freight delivery and transportation industry, as well as the taxi industry. As we have already mentioned, these will be manufactured exclusively under personal order, which will allow customers to satisfy their needs and requirements for the same.
These new electric vehicles will be sitting on the skateboard platform specially designed for these PBVs. They will be manufactured, initially, in the new plant that the company owns in Hwaseong, South Korea, although later they hope to expand this production to other new locations to meet the demand from other parts of the globe.
From KIA they affirm that their commitment to this new industry is full since they have invested 1 billion won (about 760 million euros) in the construction and tuning of the aforementioned South Korean plant. It, they expect to start production throughout the second half of 2025. Likewise, their forecasts for the first year of effective work will be to manufacture around 150,000 electric PBVs.
As pointed out by Nikkei Asia, KIA already has the first major company that is interested in these models, Coupang, which specializes in electronic commerce. This company will receive the first vehicles equipped with a single seat for the driver and where cargo space will be maximized. Coupang has confirmed that it will dedicate itself to the transport of refrigerated goods. Later, KIA will also produce models for CJ Logistics. Once the products for these two aforementioned companies have stabilized, they will begin to look for new customers in Europe and North America.
Song Ho-Sung, CEO of KIA, recently stated that “our goal is to become the world’s leading company in the purpose-built vehicle market.” By the year 2030, the Korean firm expects to have a production of around one million PBVs. Added to this is the intention to manufacture and register more than 600,000 electric passenger cars for the same year. In other words, the total line of KIA for 2030 is estimated at around 1.6 million electric vehicles of all kinds.
The brand has already confirmed that its first PBV will be medium-sized and will be based on the aforementioned new ‘eS’ platform. Its presentation could take place during the last months of 2024 and its start of mass production would arrive in 2025. This will be focused on delivery and transportation works (especially for Coupang and CJ Logistics).
Subsequently, KIA will launch its new specialized large PBV for logistics work, fresh food delivery, as well as for the transport of people in the form of an electric van. The company is also working on other smaller cutaway vehicles and even mid-size robotaxis.