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India price, design, specs, features compared

BMW India has brought the BMW i4 premium electric sedan to the Indian shores and its aggressive pricing has turned the recently launched Kia EV6 premium electric crossover on its head. While in the Indian market the South Korean manufacturer and the Bavarian car veteran aren’t racing each other, the pricing of the Kia EV6 on the sidelines of the i4 has left us thinking – which Rs 60 lakh plus green car should you get your hands on? bet money ?

While fair competition should pit the base Kia EV6 RWD variant against that of the BMW i4 Drive 40, the pricing of the Kia EV6 AWD variant makes it a closer rival. We therefore pitch the top-spec Kia EV6 GT Line AWD variant and the BMW i4 eDrive 40.

BMW i4 vs Kia EV6 price in India

The BMW i4 eDrive 40 has been launched in India for an introductory sticker price of Rs 69.90 lakh (ex-showroom). The Kia EV6, on the other hand, will get two variants: GT Line RWD and GT Line AWD. The base GT Line RWD starts at Rs 59.95 lakhs (ex-showroom) while the GT Line AWD starts at Rs 64.95 lakhs (ex-showroom).

Both prices exclude government grants and optional accessory packs and may vary depending on their specificity. While imported premium electric vehicles are still a long way off, the EV6 and i4 finish in a sweet spot in terms of size, features, performance, style and price.

Why CBU Import Is Expensive: Kia EV6

Buyers will find that when a manufacturer brings in global products through the Completely Built Unit (CBU) import route, as in the case of the Kia EV6, the prices charged on the vehicles are often much too high. This is because the Indian government tax system can charge up to 125 percent depending on the specifics of the vehicle. This is intended to promote the localization of the procurement, production and assembly of parts in the country.

There is a trend towards exorbitant niche car prices, especially in the luxury and sports car segment. However, many prominent foreign brands have started local production and assembly of vehicles, keeping taxes low and thus prices in check.

BMW i4 vs Kia EV6: specifications

Battery and range

The Kia EV6 will get two variants and both are linked to a 77.4 kWh battery pack. The base GT Line RWD and the top-spec GT Line AWD variant have a claimed range of 528km under the WLTP cycle. The BMW i4, on the other hand, gets a larger battery pack of 83.9 kWh, which gives the user a WLTP-certified range of 590 km. The claimed range of more than 500 km makes these vehicles suitable for the daily use for which they are designed.

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Performance

The Kia EV6 has more variety when it comes to the powertrain with both rear-wheel drive (RWD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) formats. The GT Line AWD variant will have two engines and thus develop a combined power of 325 hp and 605 Nm of torque. This propels the Kia EV6 from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds. The vehicle can then build up speed up to an electronically limited 192 km/h. The more sublime GT Line RWD climbs from a standstill to 100 km/h in 7.3 seconds and then some more until it hits the speed limiter set at 185 km/h.

The BMW i4 comes too close to the Kia EV6 GT Line AWD, even with its rear-wheel drive, thanks to the larger battery and powerful motor. The Drive 40 trim on the i4 uses a 340 horsepower motor that generates 430 Nm of torque. The BMW i4 achieves a time from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.7 seconds – that is a shadow of the time of the EV6. The BMW i4 also has a higher top speed of 250 km/h.

Weight and ground clearance

The German-built BMW i4 weighs 2,125 kg thanks to the larger battery pack. The Kia EV6 manages to stay on the lighter side of two tons at 1,945 kg. As the Kia EV6 is a crossover, it sits higher at 178mm and combined with a shorter 2,901mm wheelbase it should be safer on Indian roads compared to the BMW. BMW i4, on the other hand, sits much lower to the ground and with a wheelbase of 2,856mm would be much easier to scrape.

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Safety and Features

Both cars are well equipped with a few missing points here and there. In terms of safety, the Kia EV6 and BMW i4 both get 8 airbags. The BMW i4 lacks a high beam assist and cross traffic warning and the vehicle has not yet been tested. The Kia EV6 managed to score a perfect 5-star score on the G-NCAP test.

In terms of functions and comfort, the BMW i4 spoils users with: 3-zone climate control, a curved 14.9-inch infotainment screen, a 12.3-inch instrument panel for the driver, a Harman Kardon sound system with 17 speakers, a 14 -way electronically adjustable driver’s seat, sunglasses holder, mood lighting, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, gesture control, 10-way adjustable rear seat, etc. Useful functions such as anti-dazzle mirrors, reverse parking sensors and cameras, electrically adjustable tilt and telescopic steering wheel, one-touch up and down all four electric windows, laser LED lighting, etc.

The Kia EV6 also has a lot to offer its customers, such as ventilated and cooled seats, a 10-way electronically adjustable driver’s seat, dual 12.3-inch screens, 14 speakers Meridian audio system two-zone automatic climate control, four-way adjustable rear seats, multi-colour mood lighting, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and more. Value-added features such as front and rear parking sensors, 360-degree camera system, gear indicator, one-touch up and down front power windows, remote AC on/off, Alexa compatibility, etc. are also provided.

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Kia EV6 and BMW i4 are both advanced EVs and their electronically managed battery systems are capable of different charging rates. The Kia EV6 claims to have a 350 kW fast charge that can charge the battery from 10 to 80 percent in about 18 minutes. The same battery would take approximately 73 minutes to charge from a 50 kW outlet and at home it could take approximately 7 hours 20 minutes to charge from 10 to 100 percent at 7.2 kW.

The BMW i4 has a larger battery pack and claims to only charge up to 205 kW quickly, meaning it would take 31 minutes to charge from 10 to 80 percent. The same would take about 83 minutes at a 50 kW charge point. At home, the i4 would take about 8.25 hours to ramp up from 10 to 100 percent via its 11kW home charger.

Design

Both cars are suitable for two different target groups. People interested in the Kia EV6 will likely prefer the crossover look and award-winning design philosophy. The BMW i4 in comparison is a low-slung sedan and still has an elegant design DNA conflict moving forward with a huge and daunting blocked kidney grille in the front.

Design thus becomes a choice of personal pallets and both cars look distinctive and futuristic enough to find the right buyers.

BMW i4 vs Kia EV6: Verdict

The Kia EV6 and BMW i4 have massively reduced the cost of an imported EV and the response from the right buyers says a lot. There’s great value for money that both cars have to offer, along with a unique identity – one is a crossover and the other a sedan. However, in a sensitive market like India, the BMW i4 is so competitively priced against its Korean competitor that buyers are forced to stretch out and buy the Beemer. The brand equity and higher quality standards can even make buyers wave to the German at the very last minute.

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