These vehicles can be used as delivery vehicles, taxis, and for business-to-business transactions.
Autonomous capabilities could be added later on.
Kia says buyers will be able to personalize these vehicles to fit their needs.
Kia unveiled an upcoming range of electric purpose-built vehicles (PBV) a while ago but now, the automaker says it wants to sell 1 million of these EVs by the end of the decade.
These unique vehicles are a key part of the Korean company’s plan to become an important player in the mobility industry, which is likely to change significantly with the arrival of more advanced EVs and autonomous vehicles.
While the concepts have not been fully unveiled, we know these PBVs will be offered in a variety of sizes in order to suit different use cases.
The boxy vans are expected to be used for deliveries or as shuttles for ride-hailing services, which could become autonomous in the future.
At first, these models will require a driver, however since Kia says buyers will be able to order the van version with only one seat in order to maximize cargo capacity.
The automaker also says its PBVs will be made to order, which means they will be customizable to a large extent, which will allow them to fit the needs of a greater number of buyers.
In order to accommodate different bodies and provide better space efficiency, all of these models will be built on a scalable skateboard platform that contains all of the mechanical elements under the floor of the vehicle.
The first customer for this new type of EVs will be Coupang, a large e-commerce company that is often referred to as the “Amazon of South Korea”.
This customer will use van versions to deliver refrigerated goods in its home market. After orders by a few other Korean companies have been fulfilled, Kia wants to launch PBVs in Europe and North America.
The automaker has already earmarked 1 trillion Won (over $1 billion CAD) to modernize its Hwaseong factory where PBVs should enter production in late 2025.