2022.12.08 Kia

Kia Gathers Customer Ideas For Its Future PBV

Kia held the ‘PBV Using Ray EV Ideas Contest’ to collect customer opinions and reflect them on its future PBVs (Purpose Built Vehicles). Here are some ideas that shined in this contest.

Kia has successfully completed its ‘PBV Using Ray EV Ideas Contest.’ This contest was held through the official website from July 18th to October 16th, and a total of 163 applicants were received. A panel of judges composed of experts in the field gave awards to 15 teams.

The significance of this contest lies in not only identifying the diverse needs of consumers, but also being able to reflect these needs of consumers when developing a customized PBV. The core of the PBV business is to flexibly produce vehicles for various purposes and provide customized solutions. Hence, the most important thing for PBV is to identify and meet their consumers’ needs.

The Kia single‒seater van Ray is a PBV that utilizes its wide space and presents new applications

What is PBV used for? Through the contest, Kia tried to understand the needs of a wide range of consumers, including small business owners and start‒up operators who use cars for business, and customers who use cars for various purposes in their daily lives.

Participants presented various possibilities of Ray EV. In the business & lifestyle category, ‘Ray Modular Interior Utilizing Science Box’ won the grand prize; It has standardized holes on all six sides of the vehicle interior, and has a modular interior structure that allows individuals to insert and install necessary parts into the holes.

‘Ray Modular Interior Utilizing Science Box’ won the Grand Prize in Business & Lifestyle
Passengers can freely plan their own interior space by inserting desired parts into standardized holes

When the idea is realized, users can either purchase exclusive parts sold by Kia on the online store or manufacture the necessary parts themselves according to the specifications. The Ray Modular interior was praised for showing originality of ideas and meeting consumer needs. Since it is the essence of a PBV that each user has the functions they need, this idea allows them to be added directly to the car.

‘Urban Small Logistics Transportation System’ won the grand prize in Customization

‘Urban Small Logistics Transportation System’ won the grand prize in Customization. It features a folding cart that can be loaded into Ray’s back seat, wheel rails that secure the cart, a bumper guard that prevents damage to the vehicle when using the cart, and an electric GTP (Goods‒To‒Person, luggage transfer device) utilizing a sensor that assists in loading/unloading items.

Just by installing a delivery‒focused rig, the Ray can become a great urban transport

Using these features, Ray EV will be a very useful vehicle for short‒distance delivery in the city. The space is large, but the body is small, so you can easily navigate narrow alleys. The idea was highly praised for its extensibility. The possibility of implementation is high, so the automaker will also discuss the actual commercialization process. In the future, there may be a Ray EV that delivers luggage through the alleys.

‘Ray Bot: Delivery Support Robot’, which won the grand prize in the business category, is also an idea to use the Ray EV for delivery. If robot arms are attached to the ceiling of the Ray EV and product holders are attached to both sides, the robot picks up the goods and delivers them to the delivery person according to the delivery order, greatly reducing the delivery process and time. In addition, all processes related to delivery, such as invoice information and optimal routes, can be processed as data to reduce errors and increase delivery efficiency.

In Lifestyle, ‘Ray Child Care for Children’ won the grand prize. This idea is for a package that combines necessary functions for parents with young children, such as a booster seat, ISOFIX, a genuine multi‒storage box, and a 2‒row/3‒segment seat. This shows the possibility of developing a product exclusively for children.

A piece of delivery‒focused equipment can make the Ray a great urban transport
The single‒seater van Ray’s large space can also be used as a mobile pharmacy for neighborhoods without pharmacies

PBV’s unique feature is that it is a mobile space, and it can also contribute to improving the quality of life of consumers. A good example is ‘Mobile Pharmacy with Ray‒Ban’, which won the Excellence Award in the Business category. Areas with no medical institutions, such as hospitals or pharmacies, or where two facilities are more than 1km apart are designated as exceptional areas, and pharmacists can sell medicines without a doctor’s prescription.

The spacious and neat space of PBV contains numerous possibilities

However, it is difficult to get medicines in some areas with no pharmacies. In the case of Jinan‒gun, Jeollabuk‒do, and Gurye‒gun, Jeollanam‒do, more than 5,000 residents each had to travel by car for more than 10 minutes to get medicine, and in Baengnyeong Island, it was difficult to get medicine as the last pharmacy was closed. Using Ray‒Ban to operate mobile pharmacies that travel to such areas could greatly help the local residents.

The New Kia Ray Gravity

In order to create a car that can incorporate all of these diverse ideas, a lot of thought must be put into design, and this is why Kia listens to the voices of its customers. Kia has set PBV as its future core business to provide purpose‒fitting mobility. Models such as the Ray single‒seater van and Niro Plus released this year are early models that open the PBV era.

Kia plans to release a dedicated PBV model with a skateboard platform in 2025, which is planned to be spread to mid‒size, subcompact, and large‒size cars in the future

Kia will launch a dedicated PBV model based on the skateboard platform in 2025; The automaker plans to add medium‒sized PBVs, followed by ultra‒small and large‒sized PBVs. They also plan to offer special packages such as ‘Mobility Package’ or ‘Delivery Package’ so that their customers can choose options according to their needs.

The New Kia Ray Gravity

This idea contest provided PBV with the first step to confirm what customers want and realize their ideas directly. Kia plans to continue creating opportunities to listen to customers’ diverse opinions about the PBVs. The process of the automaker listening to its customers’ stories and turning those ideas into reality will further enrich the PBV ecosystem. People are looking forward to a future where various PBVs will occupy the streets.

HMG Journal Operation Team


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