Kia’s normal maintenance schedule calls for service every 12 months or 8,000 miles, whichever comes first. Our tester is quickly approaching the 8,000-mile mark, so we decided to get it in to the local dealer. Now, there were several motives for this service. For one, the Bridgestone Blizzak LM005 winter tires we procured for the EV6 just arrived, and we wanted to get them mounted. The only real action item Kia suggests at 8,000 miles is to rotate the tires — beyond this, it’s just inspection of various wear bits — so a new set of rubber leaves that problem solved. We’ll report back on the EV6’s winter performance with these Blizzaks once Michigan decides to bless us with some snow — it’s been an unseasonably snow-less year so far.
In addition to the winter tires, the Kia Access app recently informed us of an open recall on our EV6. It’s one we wrote about last year, and it affects both the EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq 5. The recall states that a voltage fluctuation could occur while the vehicle is off and in the parked position that could ultimately result in the temporary disengagement of the parking mechanism and potentially cause the vehicle to roll away. Our EV6 always stayed put when parked, but one software update later, and it’s sure to stay that way. As far as recalls go, this one was about as painless a process as could be, as the dealer updated the car’s software while it mounted and balanced the new tires.
Beyond the recall, we had one surprise at the dealership. Kia informed us that EV6s with the premium Meridian sound system are being updated with an “amp logic improvement.” After crawling the forums, it appears that a number of EV6 owners have gone to the dealership for a similar software update. Most of the complaints from folks online center around a lack of volume to the rear speakers. In the most extreme cases, EV6 owners have had their amplifiers replaced to remedy issues with the audio system. We’ve never been overly impressed with the Meridian audio system in our EV6, but it never exhibited problems enough that we wanted it inspected by the dealer.
Just like the recall, the amp logic improvement was a software update, and it was applied after the mounting and balancing of tires was complete. Kia goes through a series of tests with the audio system afterwards to ensure the system is functioning properly, and our car got a clean bill of health. In all, we spent $132 (all going toward the winter tires being mounted and balanced) and a couple of hours hanging out in our local Kia dealership’s shockingly nice customer waiting area. Seriously, it was a nicer waiting area than the BMW dealership offered across town that we just got back from a short time ago.
The next maintenance interval is at 16,000 miles, when Kia suggests you replace the climate control air filter. To get to the first major service, you’ll need to wait four years, at which point Kia suggests you flush and replace the brake fluid along with inspecting the reduction gear fluid. At this point, we’d typically have one oil change under our belt with a long-term test car, with that cost being in the $100-$200 range depending on the vehicle. Our EV6 hasn’t cost us anything more than what we’d expect from swapping onto winter tires, so let’s hope it stays that way for the remaining test time.