Kia to diversify global mobility services based on region
Kia’s fast-growing global mobility plans are to be diversified to ensure services are tailored to suit each region.
The latest plans have been revealed by president and CEO Ho Sung Song some seven months after Kia announced its ‘Plan S’ strategy, which outlines the company’s work to diversify mobility services in strategic regions around the globe.
President Song said this work would be accelerated by open innovation with global partners, ensuring bespoke solutions for each domain.
“Kia is striving to provide customised products and differentiated mobility services based on its long history in automotive manufacturing,” he explained. “Kia will further enhance its collaboration with global partners to offer regionally customised mobility services as it implements its ‘Plan S’ strategy.”
The new strategy introduces tailored plans for strategic regions around the globe, including in Europe – where Kia will collaborate with global partners to provide a customised mobility service for the region. It already has an established car-sharing service called ‘WiBLE’ with Spanish energy company Repsol, launched in 2018 and now said to be one of the leading car-sharing providers in the market, with some 500 Niro PHEVs on its books. Building on the platform, Kia plans to provide multi-modal mobility services in the future.
Kia will also launch a dealer mobility service in Italy and Russia later this year – enabling dealers to rent out their vehicles for any period and expected to expand gradually across the globe in future.
In Korea, Kia will enhance its local ‘Kia Flex’ vehicle subscription program by expanding the fleet size to 200 vehicles. The vehicle line-up will include the new Carnival, which is nearing its Korean market launch, and a new EV model to be added in the future.
And in North America, Kia will accelerate its electrification efforts and further enhance its cooperation with its mobility partners. The company provided 200 Niro EVs to the car-hailing firm Lyft last year, and this year provided 44 Niro HEVs to MoceanLab, Hyundai Motor Group’s mobility service company.
In emerging markets, Kia is also preparing for changes in the mobility service sector. Kia has partnered with companies such as Indian ride-hailing giant Ola; Revv, an Indian car-sharing company; and Grab, a major ride-hailing firm in Southeast Asia.
Earlier this summer, Kia also said it was accelerating its work in e-mobility with the launch of a new joint venture, dubbed Purple M and focused on developing Transportation as a Service (TaaS) services based on electric vehicles.