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Kia amplifies EV focus at Australian Open, celebrates 20-year partnership with Rafael Nadal

Kia Corporation is supporting the Australian Open 2024 (AO24), the prestigious tennis Grand Slam event of the Asia-Pacific region, through the supply of a fleet of official tournament vehicles, including its award-winning all-electric models EV9 and EV6.

Kia is also organizing a series of fan engagement activities that highlight its commitment to electrification and mark the company’s twenty-year partnership with brand ambassador Rafael Nadal.

As the Major Partner of AO24, the brand held an official vehicle handover ceremony at Melbourne Park on January 11, attended by Kia personnel and Tennis Australia executives. During the vehicle handover ceremony, a statue of Nadal was unveiled at Kia’s activation at Melbourne Park in tribute to Kia’s global brand ambassador.

Kia presented tournament officials with a fleet of 130 vehicles, featuring 15 EV9, 10 EV6, 10 Carnival and 95 Sorento models. This year’s tournament also marks the debut of the Kia EV9 in the official Australian Open vehicle fleet.

The vehicles will provide players, match officials and VIPs with safe, comfortable transport around Melbourne during AO24 which, for the first time, will run for a 15-day duration, from January 14 to 28.

“As the longest-running major partner of the Australian Open, we are delighted to once again play a pivotal role in supporting what is widely regarded as one of the world’s most prestigious sporting events while highlighting our ongoing commitment to the electric vehicle transition,” commented Charles Ryu, Senior Vice President, and Head of the Global Brand & CX Division at Kia.

“We are delighted to once again have the opportunity to demonstrate Kia’s latest industry-leading sustainable mobility solutions to those attending AO24 and to engage with millions of fans across the world through the digital marketing campaigns we have prepared.”

“The enduring partnership between Kia and the Australian Open has played a major role in helping us transform the AO into the phenomenal sporting and entertainment event that it is today, connecting and engaging with millions of fans around the globe,” said Craig Tiley, Australian Open Tournament Director.

“The Kia fleet has become an iconic sight in Melbourne during the AO and transports the players and their teams seamlessly around the city. This year we are delighted to see the new all-electric EV9 SUV flagship model join the fleet for the first time”.

Kia’s brand initiatives at AO24 will include model showcases for the EV9 and EV5 concept car. A striking custom Ocean Matte Blue EV9 will be positioned next to a kinetic display wall, alongside two additional EV9 models that visitors can engage with. The brand is also collaborating with Uber One and adding an electric feel to their reinstated Kia fan fleet initiative, focusing on sustainable mobility. Kia will offer Uber one members complimentary ride opportunities to the tennis in a fleet of 30 electric vehicles, featuring a mix of EV6 and EV9 models.

Kia will be joined at the event by 80 guests, including Kia customers who have purchased or test-driven a Kia EV model, selected from around the world through promotional activities to enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Australia, which included tickets to AO24 matches and a special tour of Melbourne Park. Fifteen influencers from more than ten countries will also attend the event as guests of Kia and will create engaging content from AO24 as they drive through the city of Melbourne in Kia EV9 models.

In addition to reiterating the brand’s commitment to electrification, the AO24 brand initiatives were designed to highlight Kia’s continued support for the sport of tennis and pay tribute to Rafael Nadal, who unfortunately had to withdraw from AO24 due to injury. This includes a series of videos inspired by Kia’s ‘Movement That Inspires’ ethos. ‘Dear Tennis,’ and ‘Dear Rafa’ are based upon the theme of exchanging letters.

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