Korean brand will add plug-in hatchback to European range, with Sportage and Sorento next in line for electrification.
Kia Europe has confirmed it will add a plug-in hybrid version of its all-new Ceed Sportswagon during the second half of next year, with further models tipped to get electrified powertrains in the near future as well.
Speaking with the UK's Autocar, Kia Europe's marketing boss, Artur Martins, said the Ceed PHEV will utilise the same hybrid system as the Niro PHEV crossover, which pairs a 104kW/147Nm 1.6-litre naturally-aspirated petrol engine with a 59kW electric motor and an 8.9kWh battery pack.
Expect the wagon-bodied Ceed PHEV to better (or at least match) the Niro PHEV's 1.3L/100km combined fuel claim (NEDC).
"We are going to introduce it for the wagon, and then decide if it makes sense on other body-types," Martins told the British publication, indicating the hatchback could also be in line for the electrified powertrain.
"We are going to need more electrification on other products in the future. We must get to a mix of around 25-30 per cent electrified models to hit the CO2 targets."
Like regular Ceed models, the plug-in hybrid wagon will be produced at the company's Slovakian plant, making it the brand's first PHEV to be built in Europe.
In addition to the Ceed Sportswagon (and potentially the hatchback), Kia Europe is looking to add alternative powertrain technology to other models in its line-up – namely the Sportage and Sorento crossovers.
The company already offers several hybrids in its European range, including the aforementioned Niro PHEV along with the regular Niro hybrid, and the Optima plug-in hybrid in both sedan and Sportswagon forms.
In addition to its hybrid and EV plans, Martins said the company is looking into a fuel-cell vehicle that will be Kia's equivalent to the Hyundai Nexo SUV – though it could be based on the larger Sorento.
"We are looking at a fuel cell, in the future, in a bigger car, but it depends a little bit on how the European market goes," he told Autocar.
"It works better on a bigger car because the customer is prepared to pay more on a bigger car."
Kia's local division has already indicated it will focus on pure EVs rather than hybrids, confirming two all-electric models for the Australian market by 2021.
One of these will almost definitely be the Niro EV – shown as the e-Niro (above) at the Paris motor show earlier this month – and the other likely being the new Soul EV that will be revealed in LA in November.
With that in mind, don't expect to see hybrid versions of the Sportage and Sorento in local showrooms should they make it to production, nor the Ceed PHEV given its European production schedule.
Stay tuned to CarAdvice for all the latest.
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