Kia has expanded its Kia Charge electric vehicle (EV) charging network by 48% in the last year and now offers access to more than 30,000 points in the UK.
More than 10% of the chargers available in the network are rapid DC units, offering speeds of 50kW to 350kW.
The manufacturer says Kia Charge gives Kia owners access to more DC connectors in the UK than any other brand.
Users can access points from 27 different charging companies across the country, including BP Pulse, Ubitricity, Shell, Source London, Instavolt, Pod Point, Osprey and Shell Recharge. The service also offers access to the Ionity high-powered charging network.
A single account gives access to all networks via a smartphone app (Android or iOS) or RFID card, with straightforward monthly invoicing.
In 2023, a monthly average of more than 5,700 charging sessions takes place via Kia Charge in the UK – a number growing every month as more Kia EV customers sign up to the service.
Kia compensates all charging activity via Kia Charge with 100% renewable wind power. Kia purchases the equivalent number of megawatt-hours (MWh) used by customers from renewable sources, via Guarantee of Origin certificates. This effectively adds zero-emissions power to the grid and increases visibility for green electricity demand on the market.
Kia Charge offers a choice of two subscriptions: ‘Easy’ and ‘Plus’.
Easy users pay a £1.99 one-time activation fee and a 49p session fee per charge, plus the cost of electricity. Plus users pay a £2.99 monthly subscription fee and the cost of electricity used. They also get a 15% discount on the base charging tariff of most networks.
Additional bolt-on packages can reduce the cost of charging at Ionity and BP Pulse chargers.
In January, Kia launched a new reward scheme that enables customers to collect credit for free charging.
Accessed via a smartphone app, &Charge allows users to collect EV charging credits when shopping at a number of UK retailers including M&S, booking.com, Ocado, Waterstones, Boots, B&Q, Wickes, Foot Locker.
Credits can be redeemed to pay for public charging sessions.
Kia aims to offer a line-up of 14 fully electric models by 2027, in line with its ‘Plan S’ strategy.
2023 will see the production-ready debut of the EV9 SUV. The new model is based on Kia’s Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP).