Ask Nathan: Kia’s Electric Van, TFL Stands For…and Why Care About NACTOY?

Kia PV5 Concept

In this week’s post

  • What’s up with Kia’s electric van?
  • TFL stands for?
  • Is NACTOY legit?

The first question comes from a fan who caught a glimpse of Kia’s electric van, which debuted at this year’s CES.

Q: (Via: Kia’s electric van looks cool

Is Kia’s electric van going into production? It looked like there were a few concepts, I can’t seem to figure out which one is which.

– BBeeComingBack

A: Howdy,

Kia debuted several concept vans.

Kia calls these concepts PBVs (Platform Beyond Vehicle[s]), and they debuted at the 2024 CES event in Las Vegas, NV. These “vans” are all EVs built on skateboard platforms, each one is sized and powered for a specific mission. The tiny PV1 is essentially a micro delivery vehicle, while the PV7 appears to be large enough to compete against the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ford Transit and Rivian van – among others.

We have a detailed review you can read (here).

It looks like Kia will build these vehicles on modular platforms that may accept a variety of different upper sections. It’s a setup that could allow you to switch from a box-van to an RV (recreational vehicle) if needed. Kia is building a plant in Hwaseong in Korea. It’s scheduled to become operational in 2025, and that facility will first pump out the midsized PV5, which may get a different name by then.

I like the thoughtful touches Kia added for those who need mobility aids (wheelchair access), opaque solar glass and adjustable ride system. That system looks like something that Boston Dynamics (Hyundai owns a controlling stake) utilizes in some of its robots.

This is real cool looking tech, but nothing is certain. We’ll keep an eye on future PV news!

– N

Sure, we get lots of negative comments. I’m used to that, but this is something a little bit different. In some cases, people are trying to be funny, and that’s fine. Some are confused.

Q: (Via: YouTube) Oh yes, TFL stands for trucks for life in my mind. – SarangLegacy

  • I think TFL means THE FOREIGN LADS! They are all not from America! – K_Stu_Pid
  • TFL= Toyota Fan League. – nothingtoseehere1260
  • Come on guys! You are now The Ford Lovers *TFL! – Ramsaway90
  • What does TFL even mean? Are you taking “the” as part of your name? Aren’t you just the fast lane? – August19

A: Hi folks.

Funny thing about some viewers: they like coming up with witty names replacing The Fast Lane… which is fine. Oddly, that wasn’t our first name. TFL once stood for “The first lemmings.” No kidding. Around 2009, Tommy convinced Roman to change it, and the rest is history.

One thing: while two of our members were born in Europe – they are more American (read: patriotic) than just about anyone else I’ve worked with.

– N

The last question comes from a fan who is unsure if the NACTOY awards are worth a damn.

Q: (Via: RE: Should I care about NACTOY?

Is what I wanna know. For years and years I’ve seen different magazines, post cars the year and stuff like that. I don’t know if they’re qualified to tell me which car is best and which car is worse. I did a little research and I discovered that some of the people who are involved are politically motivated to hate electric vehicles. I’m not kidding, there are people who simply are part of NACTOY in order to get a free ride to an event. Luxurious 5 Star hotels and lavish meals are part of the gig, so you get a paid vacation to talk nice about a car? You’ve mentioned that before, and there are only a handful of people who admit that. What I wanna know is, Are they legitimate? Is this even worth looking into when they announce winners?

Many of the people who are part of this aren’t even Automotive journalist in reality. I see ton of social media mentions here and there when they get to go to exotic places but I don’t see any substantial reviews coming out of half these people. Some of them don’t do car reviews at all. I just don’t get it!  

  • Jules

A: Hi Jules.

A similar question came up nearly two years ago, and you can read that response (here).

Yes, you’re right – some of the judges are politically biased, or have little automotive experience. It’s also a large pool of people voting, and some voices stand out more than others. Some of the judges are acquaintances and friends. Others are lauded in the industry, and have a massive journalistic portfolio. Some are along for the ride. It’s a mix.

This is my honest opinion, which is connected to a story:

After years of reading Rolling Stone, I came to the conclusion that Rollings Stone has poor taste in music. I ended my subscription and looked elsewhere. In time, I found out that talking to real musicians made all the difference. That worked for me. My best friend idolizes Rolling Stone, and thinks of that magazine as the cat’s pajamas. Which one is right?

Answer: neither of us.

You see, some of us either looks for a voice that aligns with our inner voice, or voices that direct us with authority. Others need only find that one person/journalist who gives them the facts. There are some who need to have fluff, entertainment and a hint of fact mixed in.

It all depends.

Check out (this) link and find out about these judges yourself.

  • N