Kia to launch first electric vehicle by end-2011

With more models to follow by 2014
Oct 4, 2011

Kia will reportedly introduce its first electric vehicle (EV) before 2011 ends and the Korean carmaker is planning to introduce a few more models by 2014.

According to AutoNews.com, Kia has called its electric vehicle effort the TAM project with the very first electric vehicle being a small car based on the Hyundai i10. The report added that Kia plans to produce 2,000 units of this model in 2012 while it hopes to add a compact EV to its lineup in 2014. Hyundai, Kia's sister company, plans to launch a compact EV in 2015.

Hyundai has been testing a fleet of the i10-based BlueOn EVs, which debuted in September 2010. Based on the tests, Hyundai revealed it's ready to begin small-scale mass production of EVs for Kia's TAM project.

Although both Hyundai and Kia are far behind its competitors like Nissan, Mitsubishi and General Motors in the development of EVs and plug-in hybrids, both Korean car brands are reportedly eager to incorporate alternative-energy vehicles in their overall strategies to meet toughening global emissions standards.

Both Hyundai and Kia have launched their respective brand's first electrified vehicles this year: Hyundai with the Sonata Hybrid and Kia with the Optima Hybrid.

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