According to Reuters, Kia is looking to jump into the EV fight with an electrified CUV. Parent company Hyundai said that it's planning to turn out a total of 2,500 battery-operated vehicles by 2012. A total of 500 of those will be Hyundai BlueOn models, but the rest of the fleet will be made up of the new Kia-badged creation. The early fleet will be sold to Korean government agencies as a large-scale test, but commercial sales are supposed to start shortly thereafter. Reuters quotes Hong John-hee, the director of the company's electric vehicle development group, as saying that the cost of battery-electric vehicles will fall off much quicker than most analysts are anticipating.
Like the BlueOn, the CUV-based EV will store its power in an SK Energy battery pack, though there was no mention as to whether the cells would be lithium-ion or traditional nickel-metal hydride.
The electric crossover is likely to show up on the market in 2013 and will be capable of covering around 80 miles on a single charge. Both Hyundai and Kia are part of an effort by the Korean government to replace up to 20 percent of the nation's passenger vehicles with EVs by 2020.