2015 KIA SOUL EV: Kia’s 2015 Soul EV, made its world debut at the 2014 Chicago Auto Show (CAS), set to the sounds of soulful electrified blues music. Return to the 2015 CAS, the Kia Soul EV continues as Kia’s first all-electric, zero-emissions car sold in the U.S. The front-wheel drive Soul EV is powered by an 81.4 kW, 109 horsepower electric motor, producing a generous 210 lb.-ft. of torque. The liquid-cooled AC synchronous permanent magnet motor uses multi-layer magnets to help improve efficiency and reduce the whine that’s commonly experienced with other electric vehicles. The motor delivers its power to the front wheels through a single-speed constant-ratio gear reduction unit. Acceleration from 0-60 mph is expected to take fewer than 12 seconds with a top speed electronically limited to approximately 90 mph. When fully-charged, the Soul EV is expected to have an 80-100 miles of driving range. The battery’s location beneath the floor offers the stable feel of a lower center of gravity, which helps ride and handling and ensures that the EV remains true to the Soul’s fun-to-drive reputation. Additional cross bracing beneath the low-mounted battery contributes to a 5.9 percent improvement in torsional rigidity over the gasoline-powered Soul. Improved aerodynamics and the absence of engine noise, combined with special sound-proofing materials, result in an exceptionally quiet ride. For the benefit of pedestrian safety, the Soul EV is equipped with a Virtual Engine Sound System (VESS) that emits an auditory alert at speeds below 12 mph and whenever the car is in reverse.
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