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Kia KCD12 Concept to Signal Plans for Large CUV

Debut planned in Detroit.

by on Jan.06, 2016

The Kia KCD12 concept vehicle takes aim at the large, high-line crossover segment.

Kia will roll out the latest in its long-running series of KCD concept vehicles at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit next week.

Dubbed the KCD12, the show car will offer a solid glimpse of what the Korean carmaker has in mind for the full-size crossover segment, slotting in above its current Sorento model, a company source told

What a Concept!

Kia officials released this teaser image during this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. An initial look suggests the KCD12 would be sized somewhere between a Toyota Highlander and Sequoia. But the concept vehicle appears to be targeting a more premium segment of the market.


Kia Sportspace Offers Clear Look at New Optima

U.S. sedan will borrow key cues from European wagon concept.

by on Mar.02, 2015

The Kia Sportspace Concept will heavily influence the design of the next-gen Optima sedan.

Ever since former Audi design chief Peter Schreyer came onboard, Kia has given meaning to its slogan, “The Power to Surprise.” Whether it’s the big K900 luxury sedan, the quirky Soul or the GT4 Stinger concept, the Korean carmaker has delivered some of the industry’s most intriguing styling exercises.

And it’s proving that point once again this week at the Geneva Motor Show this week where it will formally unveil the Kia Sportspace wagon concept. We got a first hint of what’s coming last month, and now the Asian maker has pulled the wraps off the Sportspace with a series of photos.

Design News!

And while the concept is clearly aimed at the European market, where wagons remain a highly popular body style, Americans motorists should take a close look at what, in sedan form, will be the next midsize Optima. Expect to see only a few modest changes when the production design reaches showrooms later this year.


Kia to Reveal Trail’ster “Rugged Runabout” in Chicago

Beefed up Soul concept is powered by e-AWD.

by on Feb.05, 2015

Kia's showing off its Trail'ster at the Chicago Auto Show. The Soul-based hybrid features a unique drivetrain.

Kia plans to blow into the Windy City next week with an intriguing concept vehicle it’s describing as a “rugged runabout.”

A terse release doesn’t reveal much, though it suggests that the Kia Trail’ster concept will attempt to blend the best of the maker’s gas and electric versions of the popular Soul, while adding a little more rugged capabilities.

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“Conceived at Kia’s California design studio,” the Korean carmaker says, the Trail’ster “re-imagines one of the brand’s most popular vehicles. Built for city dwellers seeking an adventurous escape and intended to enable a variety outdoor activities, this concept proves that practical urban wheels can also be rugged and capable.” (more…)

Kia Niro Concept Hints at Possible Urban Hybrid Vehicle

Show car features electric all-wheel-drive system.

by on Feb.06, 2014

The Kia Niro Concept uses a new B-segment platform likely to soon show up in production.

While a teaser image of the new Kia Niro suggests the show car is capable of doing some serious off-roading, the Korean maker is really exploring the possibilities of a “cutting-edge urban hybrid vehicle.”

Making its debut at the 2014 Chicago Auto Show, the prototype “hints at” something Kia clearly has under development, a small, high-mileage crossover that would target younger, environmentally minded buyers living in urban environments much like the Windy City.

The goal is to come up with something that has more attitude and a more fun-to-drive feel than the typically stodgy hybrids of today that seem focused only on maximizing mileage.

Fuel for Thought!

“Ten years ago people wanted understated style in the SUV market, but increasingly, as more people migrate to the B-segment, they are looking for strong character and individuality,” said Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer at Kia’s Frankfurt, Germany-based Design Center Europe which developed the Niro concept.


Kia Powers Up GT4 Stinger Concept

High-performance hatch scheduled for Detroit debut.

by on Jan.02, 2014

Kia will show us more of the GT4 Stinger in Detroit.

“Behold the Kia GT4 Stinger,” our friends from Korea suggest, offering the first rendering of the sporty little concept vehicle the maker plans to reveal at the North American International Auto Show just a little more than a week from now.

The maker had previously hinted that it was working up a 2+2 hatchback concept. And now that it’s given the show car a name, it is supplying just enough new information to keep us teased.

A Safe Bet!

Perhaps most intriguing is the mention of a “turbocharged 2.0-liter that pumps 315 horsepower to the rear wheels.”

The Korean carmaker does have both an engine and rear-drive platform in the parts bin it shares with sibling brand Hyundai, so perhaps we may learn at the Detroit Auto Show about some production plans.

But for now, the only other hard information we can relay is the fact that the show car will have an extremely low, supercar-like ride height, that it rides on custom 20-inch wheels, features a carbon fiber front splitter mounted below the bumper, and that white surrounds and vertical LED headlamps surround an even more sporty version of the current Kia “tiger nose” grille.

The front end almost has an Audi R8-like appearance and that seems to fit the direction the automaker is taking. Long known for its bare-bones econoboxes, Kia has been developing a more recent reputation for cutting-edge styling thanks to former Audi designer Peter Schreyer, now a Vice Chairman of Hyundai-Kia and still the design boss of the smaller brand.

(Click Here to find out more about the 124-mile Kia Soul battery car.)

Kia recently underscored its move up-market by announcing plans to produce the new K900 premium luxury sedan; at as much as $70,000, the four-door taking aim at the likes of the Audi A8, BMW 7-Series, Mercedes-Benz S-Class – and the Hyundai Genesis.

(Click Here for a closer look at the K900.)

What else can we add about the GT4 Stinger Concept? We’ll give Kia the last word, the maker suggesting it is “aimed at delivering head-turning looks while providing superb driving enjoyment, whether on the road or at the track.”

Kia Promises “Stunning” Sports Car for Detroit Debut

Rear-wheel-drive anyone?

by on Dec.18, 2013

Kia plans to debut this 2+2 sports car concept when the Detroit Auto Show opens next month.

Just when we thought things were winding down for the holiday break, Kia used the brief lull to surprise us with this overhead teaser image of what it describes as a “stunning 2+2 sports car” set to debut at the 2014 North American International Auto Show less than a month from now.

Though it’s difficult to make out much detail, what we do know is that the project was penned by the design team at the Kia styling studio in Irvine, California.

That said, it bears the unmistakable fingerprint of the Korean carmaker’s global design chief, Peter Schreyer, who has transformed the brand’s products from stodgy to striking in less than half a decade.

A Sporting Choice!

Says Kia’s release, the concept “is intended to turn heads while delivering superb driving enjoyment on both road and track.”


Kia Gets Edgy with New Provo Concept

“Setting pulses racing” with a sporty hybrid.

by on Mar.04, 2013

Kia hints at production plans for the Provo Concept.

He has shaken up a staid and conservative brand, and now, as Kia’s new president Peter Schreyer is out to show that it can maintain its edgy pace with the introduction of the new Provo concept, which is making its debut at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.

Perhaps the biggest challenge for Schreyer’s design team will be continue evolving the so-called Tiger-Nose styling cues now in use on models like the Optima sedan and Sportage crossover. And like the Cross GT Concept, the Provo gives a hint of what’s to come, here with a mix of sophisticated technology in a B-segment package.

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Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer at Kia’s European styling base in Frankfurt, described the Provo as “an emotional and muscular car aimed at delivering pure fun and performance for today’s city-based enthusiast driver who longs for the curves of the open road.

The Kia Provo isn’t just a styling exercise, he added. Like the Cross GT, it is expected to have a very clear influence on products the Korean maker will soon bring to market.


Kia Moves Up-Market with Cross GT Concept

“Blurring the lines.”

by on Feb.07, 2013

The Kia Cross GT Concept hints at future plans for the Korean automaker.

Kia is the latest maker hoping to “blur the lines” between a luxury sedan and a three-row crossover with the new Cross GT Concept it has unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show.

It brings to mind the size gap between the 2- and 3-row versions of the Santa Fe launched this year by sibling maker Hyundai – but with more upscale accoutrements.

Your Auto Show Source!

“The debut of the GT in 2011 heralded a new frontier for Kia, both from a design and a business perspective,” noted Peter Schreyer, Kia Motors Corporation president and global chief of design.  “It beautifully illustrated to the world that the brand was ready to explore the possibility of perhaps one day offering a full-size rear-drive luxury saloon.  The Cross GT, with its raised stance and large cargo area, allows us to envision the GT in the form of a full-size luxury crossover.”


Kia Teases “Provocative” Urban Concept

Debut planned for Geneva Motor Show.

by on Jan.23, 2013

A first look at the Kia Urban Concept.

Apparently not content with just having the edgy Soul to win over young, urban buyers, Kia apparently is ready to roll out another option for them and will provide a hint of what could be in store in the form of a so far unnamed urban concept vehicle it plans to introduce at the Geneva Motor Show later this winter.

The maker is offering us a first hint of what it has in store with this teaser image, but beyond that it isn’t saying much more, other than to describe the prototype as “a provocative and racy new urban concept car.”

Your Concept Source!

It adds that Kia’s now-familiar tiger-nose front end can be seen “morphing into a mischievous yet friendly grille and headlight arrangement, coupled with strong styling lines that exude speed and energy from every angle.”


First Look: Kia GT 4-Door Coupe Concept

Images, name leak out before Frankfurt debut.

by on Sep.09, 2011

New images of Kia's Concept reveal it is named the GT.

How much to reveal ahead of time? That’s always the challenge for an automaker heading into a crowded event like next week’s Frankfurt Motor Show.  Say too little and your new offering could get lost in the crowd.  Too much and the gathering media hordes might not have reason to show up at your news conference.

Kia was trying to walk a fine line, revealing just enough to tease folks to show up for the launch of a sexy new 4-door coupe-like concept it will be unveiling in Germany.  Whether intentional or not a second wave of pics have wound up in the public domain, one of them revealing that the prototype will be named the Kia GT Concept.

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And word has it the show car will directly influence the future flagship coming for the Korean brand.

The concept features an unusually short front overhang with scooped side intakes framing the signature Kia grille – here moved higher up than on the brand’s current models.