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April 1, 2023

Kia Philippines Can Bring In The EV9 But Only If...

Showgoers, both the media and the public, swarmed Kia’s first all-electric, three-row SUV, the Kia EV9 at the 2023 Seoul Mobility Show. This means Kia has a potential hit on their hands, and it’s something Kia Philippines cannot afford not to notice.

At the sidelines of the show, Kia Philippines President Manny Aligada says the company is eyeing to bring in the EV9, but only if they could bring in most, if not, all its features.

Aligada says that being a flagship EV SUV, launching the EV9 to the Philippines represents a different challenge compared to the EV6. The EV6, which was just launched in the Philippines a few weeks back, faced to main hurdles: the lack of a charging infrastructure and consumer education on the merits of EV ownership. It’s for these two main reasons why Kia Philippines opted to bide their time and made sure the main support structures were in place before launching it to the market.

“In launching a new vehicle, Kia Philippines keeps three things in mind: brand perception, aftersales support, and the distribution network. When it comes to brand perception, we ask: what can this new vehicle bring to the table when it comes to the Kia brand? We only look for products that are segment competitive and will increase the value of the brand. For the second, we have to make sure that we can comfortably support the new vehicle after purchase. We can’t bring in a vehicle without means of having their owners service it through any of our 42 Kia dealerships. Lastly, we have to make sure that our dealers have amply supply not just of parts, but of new cars as well,” outlined Aligada.

With the EV9, however, the main challenge is different, and it surrounds its connectivity features. The Kia EV9 may boast truly innovative and premium features found in a Kia model, its main highlight is its upgradeability. The app store-like Kia Connect Store will allow owners to purchase upgrades—either outright or subscription—without the need to visit a dealership. This allows owners to add features and functionality to keep it up-to-date and fresh throughout its life.

Aligada says that the segment considering the EV9 will want to have the features that Kia highlighted during the global reveal, and this will require the Kia Connect Store.

“The Kia EV9 is a technology leader and it will include features like eyes-free [Level 3] autonomous driving capability. Customers who will look at the EV9 will definitely look for these features, and it’s something we definitely have to put on the table for Filipino buyers. At this point, however, we still don’t know what the requirements are to offer the Kia Connect Store and OTA [Over The Air] updates to the Philippines,” says Aligada.

With electrification becoming a cornerstone for Kia, it’s a question of not if but when the Philippines will see the EV9. With the global roll out of the EV9 slated towards the end of 2023, expect Kia to release more information about its all-electric full-sized SUV’s connectivity features. If there are no hiccups by then, expect Kia Philippines to continue leveraging the strength of the Ayala Corporation, and its partners like Globe, to offer the network requirements for Kia’s services.


  1. Do you think that the EV9 will make it here? When? Is our country ready for it?

  2. I think the car may trim off some taxes and fees if they bring a very base variant, the lowest price possible, then people may unlock these later on when they get home, no?

  3. I hope VW Phils will follow the strategies of KIA in the country. Congrats and more power KIA Phils for bringing EV6 and maybe in the future this EV9.


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