The declining demand for ICE-powered A-segment cars and the push for electric powertrains in Europe is leading to automakers replacing them with pure electric A-segment cars there. A new report from Automotive News Europe suggests that this industry-wide shift will lead to a Hyundai i10 Electric in the long-run.
Emilio Herrera, COO, Kia (Europe), has told the European website that a pure electric variant of the Kia Picanto is under consideration. The company knows that A and B segments are very important in European markets, like in Italy, for instance, where these segments account for 50% of the market share. One of the biggest challenges in launching an EV is the profitability, and the smaller the car, the greater the intensity of that challenge is.
Asked why Kia wants to launch an all-electric Picanto, below was Herrera’s response:
We will have no choice. We will have to do it. The A and B segments are so important in Europe. In Italy, those segments account for 50% of the market. We will have to have an A-segment car that is electric.
While the above statement confirms an all-electric Picanto is a must-have, below is the only way how Kia sees that happening:
The only vehicle it could share its platform with is the Hyundai i10, if they also wanted to build an electric version.
In all likeliness, to make the R&D investment and production costs justifiable and lowering them down by achieving volumes as high as possible, Hyundai Motor Group will have a pure electric variant of both its A-segment cars, the Kia Picanto and even the Hyundai i10 (Hyundai Grand i10 Nios).
In India, the Hyundai Grand i10 Nios’ pure electric variant, if launched, would be superseded by a pure electric variant of the Hyundai Aura. These EVs, and likely a Hyundai Venue Electric as well, will be part of the Hyundai Smart EV project.