Kia EV4 concept is part sedan, part hatchback, all electric

SEOUL — You guys like buzzwords? Good, because the Kia EV4 is full of ‘em. At the concept’s unveiling in South Korea this week, Karim Habib, Kia’s head of global design, said the EV4 “shifts the paradigm of sedan typology.” All we know is, it’s a low-slung four-door with a long liftback and a massive rear overhang. And yes, it’s headed for production.

Sedans continue to fall out of fashion, but Kia doesn’t want to abandon the segment entirely. That’s why, with the EV4, Kia chose to go with a liftback look, making a car with traditional sedan proportions but a large cargo area that’s hinged at the roof. It’s for sure a weird car, especially with that exaggerated rear overhang. Also, those taillights: Anyone else seeing Cadillac CT4 back there?

The EV4 has a few of the same interior features Kia showed on its EV3 concept, including directional and backlit pieces that manage airflow, as well as a sliding center console. The EV4 doesn’t have the EV3’s useful flip-up rear seat,  but it does have a pretty neat roof spoiler – not to mention some of the coolest three-spoke wheels ever.

Kia says the production EV4 will ride on the same E-GMP platform that underpins the rest of the company’s new EVs but that, like the EV3 and EV5, it’ll use 400-volt architecture. The EV6 and EV9 have 800-volt underpinnings, resulting in some of the fasting charging speeds on the market. Expect single- and dual-motor variants to be offered, and an EV4 GT could be in the works, too.

Will we see the EV4 in America? That’s still up in the air. Sedans are arguably more popular here than they are in other countries, but it’s still not the booming segment it once was. But who knows, maybe a paradigm shift is what we need.

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