Playful but gutsy, sturdy yet impish – Kia’s dramatic new Niro urban-lifestyle concept, unveiled at the IAA in Frankfurt on 10 September, hints at a possible future B-segment contender ready to take on the city environment with style and tenacity.

Published | 10/09/2013
Kia Niro is a hero for the city

• Urban lifestyle concept unveiled at IAA
• Possible new-style B-segment contender
• 1.6-litre T-GDi engine with hybrid electric drive

Frankfurt, 10 September 2013
– Playful but gutsy, sturdy yet impish – Kia’s dramatic new Niro urban-lifestyle concept, unveiled at the IAA in Frankfurt on 10 September, hints at a possible future B-segment contender ready to take on the city environment with style and tenacity.

Ready for any challenge that the assured modern motorist may throw at it, the Niro combines a mischievous character in a clearly robust and substantial yet stylish bodyshape featuring a mix of contrasting materials in compact, purposeful dimensions.

Born out of Kia’s determination to seek new compact-car options for the individualistic and demanding driver for whom size is an issue, the concept features intriguing elements not always associated with smaller cars and has been created in Europe at Kia’s Frankfurt Design Studio with European tastes and expectations very much in mind.

Niro looks to bring an almost counter-4x4 image to the smaller B-segment.  Niro has the solidity and style of a solid-cast titanium watch case yet displays a nimble stance that hints at a readiness for action promising protection and capability.

Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer at Kia’s Frankfurt office – who led the concept team – said: “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.

“We believe Niro is cheekier and even sleeker to show a clear spirited and intrepid character – a car that has the tenacity to deal with any challenge that comes its way,” he added.

But Niro is no purely functional mud-plugger!  Instead its muscular and resolute style will meet the needs of owners who insist on being where the action is and are excited at the prospect of getting down and dirty!

“It may have the looks of a Dakar contender but Niro has a strong premium feel thanks to contrasting advanced modern materials that mix brawn with spirit to deliver a playful vehicle ready to be part of an active lifestyle,” Guillaume commented further.

Compact size on a new platform
Although Niro has been created to deliver a sturdy and muscular outline, it has relatively compact dimensions on an all-new platform that will form the basis of future B-segment products from Kia. 

The design team started with an aim of creating a clearly muscular and purposeful outline and the startling two-tone exterior look is enhanced by its wheel-at-each-corner stance but in the urban battleground its 4,185cm overall length, 1,850cm width and 1,558cm height place it firmly in the city-car bracket.

The menacingly dark “Nightfall” coloured exterior is sharply and attractively offset by a brushed, stainless steel roof.  Enveloping the entire cabin, this two-finish construction gives a unique and strongly technological edge to Niro’s appearance.  Also adding a feel that the car is virtually bursting out of its skin are running-board type “blades” above the lower side-sills – echoed by similar creases in the front and rear lower valances.

Adding to the concept's chunky nature a 2,590cm wheelbase and 1,630cm track ensure it is firmly planted on the road and provides plenty of internal space.

The signature “tiger-nose” grille outline, front and rear towing hooks, bonnet-located air outlet and other elements are highlighted in anodised “Limelight” aluminium.

With a low cabin glasshouse and a deliberately angled front valance the Niro has an assertive and purposeful outline.

The front valance also features an asymmetric arrangement of air vent holes that was seen on the Provo concept in Geneva.  The aggressive front look is enhanced by an ice-cube light arrangement providing dip and main beam lights, strip daytime running lights around the edge of the lighting housing and also built-in quartered spot lights.

Entry is by dihedral “butterfly” doors that open into the roof panel and swing up high and with low-set flush handles. Mounted directly onto the side windows are milled “Plexiglas” door mirrors with in-built downward-facing cameras.

At the rear, as well as a rearward-facing video camera the functional tailgate has a secret in store.  Part of the rear light cluster swings up as an essential element of the hatch architecture to give good light and visibility into the cargo space, leaving behind the secondary section of the cluster to ensure safety by ensuring other road users can still see the car in the dark.

The hatch opens onto a huge carbon-fibre clad cargo deck ready to swallow the equipment and gadgets the driver and passenger may need or for a suite of luggage if the destination is up-town rather than out-of-town!

The Niro’s sturdy look is completed by special 225/40R20 tyres mounted on milled aluminium 20 inch five-spoke wheels.

Visionary but pragmatic
Niro may be a designers’ eye view of a future B-segment contender, but that doesn’t mean it is a pure flight of fancy.

Guillaume commented: ”Right from the start, this particular B-segment project was about looking at where Kia might take its contenders in this part of the market.  This is a growing sector in Europe and Niro is just as much about our thinking for the future as Provo was.”

With that in mind, Niro comes with a variant of Kia’s turbocharged 1.6-litre ‘Gamma’ engine, developing 160ps.

In Niro the engine and seven-speed, dual-clutch transmission serve only the front wheels but an electric-hybrid system powered from regenerative braking delivers up to 45ps to the rear wheels – when road conditions require extra grip.

Tough style inside
Continuing Niro’s robust nature but combining that clear purpose with emphatic style, the interior has clearly not been designed with spartan out-doors activities in mind.

Guillaume said: “Going anywhere doesn’t mean going without style! And Niro delivers a very up-market interior.  But as a 2+2 with the flexibility of a large cargo deck it is clearly also ready for any purpose.”

Easy access is ensured by the butterfly doors being cut into that shimmering roof and the cabin layout has solidity and volume providing a substantial feeling and is dotted with luxury touches and materials. 

Niro's interior echoes the one-piece moulded front seats seen in Provo but here, covered in a techno-look “Orbit Silver” line-quilted textile. The clam-shell seat-backs tilt to allow access to a two-seat 50-50 split bench.

These occasional-use seats means Niro’s owners can accommodate passengers but when folded flat they form the front edge of that full-length carbon fibre load area allowing plenty of space for luggage, equipment or cargo - depending on the destination!

Extensive use of “Volcano Black” leather on the front dashboard and binnacle coupled with switchgear and other elements finished in either anodised black or “Limelight” aluminium give a cosseting and quality feel to the cabin.

A perfect seating position is delivered thanks to the fully adjustable pedal box and the deep-dished aluminium and leather steering wheel.

Ahead of the driver is a super-vision digital instrument binnacle that can be formatted and switched to provide appropriate information.  It features all the main instruments but additional information is displayed on a centre console-mounted screen.

This screen also allows the active owner to see and record live pictures from the video cameras mounted at the front and rear, in the door mirrors and elsewhere in the car. 

The centre screen can also display altitude, vehicle attitude, compass and entertainment information, Bluetooth functions as well as mapping and satellite navigation – with directional commands relayed onto the main binnacle.

Small “winglets” on the binnacle handle main switching functions including direction indicators and camera displays.

Rising up between the transmission tunnel and the main dashboard structure are two anodised aluminium columns.  On first appearance they look to be simply strengthening struts – but the merest touch on the left-hand strut reveals additional functions.  The engine Start-Stop button is located here as well as the main transmission drive control.

Additional touch-sensitive panels allow control of the in-car entertainment and computer functions on the centre screen.  A ring on the right hand strut handles volume controls.

A promising future
Guillaume suggests that Niro could be close to on-road reality - if the public wants it!

“As designers we have to look at what the future could hold, not just what is probable, and we believe drivers want excitement and new solutions from their vehicles,” he commented.

“It is clear that the B-segment is growing as European motorists seek to downsize but it is equally clear that they refuse to give up individuality and distinctiveness – so Niro explores one avenue to satisfy that desire.”

“We would love nothing more than to see all of our concept designs on the streets of Frankfurt or London or Paris tomorrow.  As Kia looks to add to its range of small cars for this future European market you have to look at where the market opportunities exist and how we can exploit them.  Perhaps Niro answers that challenge” he added.

Currently Kia Motors has not made final decisions on future B-segment products and there are no plans for Niro to go into commercial production in the immediate future – but the Niro’s appearance at the IAA will be used to gauge public opinion and possible demand.

For more images click here .


Editors’ Notes 

Kia Motors Europe 
Kia Motors Europe is the European sales, marketing, and service arm of Kia Motors Corporation.  With its headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, it covers 30 markets in Europe. 

About Kia Motors Corporation 
Kia Motors Corporation (www.kia.com) – a maker of quality vehicles for the young-at-heart – was founded in 1944 and is Korea's oldest manufacturer of motor vehicles.  Over 2.7 million Kia vehicles a year are produced in nine manufacturing and assembly operations in five countries which are then sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering around 150 countries .  
Kia today has over 47,000 employees worldwide and annual revenues of US$42 billion.  It is the major sponsor of the Australian Open and an official automotive partner of FIFA – the governing body of the FIFA World Cup™.  Kia Motors Corporation's brand slogan – "The Power to Surprise" – represents the company's global commitment to surprise the world by providing exciting and inspiring experiences that go beyond expectations.

Kia reveals all-new Soul compact SUV for 2014

• Smooth new look inspired by 2012 Kia Track’ster concept
• All-new platform, stiffer bodyshell and upgraded suspension improve driving dynamics and ride comfort
• Significantly quieter cabin, with higher quality materials throughout
• More space for people and cargo, plus a range of new premium features
• Extensive range of customisation options available  in 2014

Frankfurt, 10 September 2013
– The all-new 2014 Kia Soul compact SUV, making its European debut at the 65th Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) in Frankfurt, will go on sale in Europe next year.  The smooth new-look exterior is inspired by the 2012 Kia Track’ster concept and introduces a thoroughly fresh, more grown-up appearance without losing its individualistic edge.
 
Design
Although the new Soul is ‘all-new’ – none of the exterior body panels are carried over, and the interior is a new design – the 2014 Soul’s upright stance, squared shoulders, wraparound greenhouse, high-mounted tail lights and confidence-inspiring ride height are all hallmark design elements which will ensure the new model is instantly recognisable as a Soul.
 
“The Soul has attracted a loyal following among Kia buyers, so it was important that the all-new model remained true to the original iconic design.  Beyond design, our main focus was infusing it with improved driving dynamics, developing a higher-quality cabin and adding desirable features that improve the Soul’s appeal, value and sophistication,” comments Benny Oeyen, Vice President Marketing and Product Planning, Kia Motors Europe.
 
“Keeping what made the current Soul special while addressing areas for improvement presented Kia’s design studio in California and engineers in Korea with a tough challenge.  Many of the Track’ster’s dramatic design elements – first seen in 2012 – can now be found in the new Soul.  Kia has maintained the iconic design while adding modern styling cues to make the 2014 Soul even more desirable,” adds Oeyen.
 
 Exterior similarities between the new Soul and Track’ster concept are clear.  The large trapezoidal lower front air intake is carried over from the concept, and the fog lights – located low down and pushed to the outer edges – mirror those found on the concept.  Kia’s signature grille is present, though reworked to more closely resemble the concept and bring it in line with other models in the product line-up.
 
Chassis and powertrain
The biggest technical change for the new 2014 Soul is the adoption of an all-new platform, based on that of the latest Kia cee’d.
 
The re-engineered bodyshell is now made of 66% ultra-high strength or high strength steel, with stronger connections along the cowl, upper and lower B-pillars and between the C-pillars.  The result is a 29% increase in torsional rigidity compared to the outgoing model.  Thanks to the use of ultra-high strength steel, the A-pillars are 20 mm narrower, improving forward visibility.

The MacPherson strut front suspension is now mounted on a subframe with four bushings (none are used on the first-generation Soul) to better isolate the cabin from vibrations and minimise ride harshness.  The steering box has been moved forward, improving steering response and reducing impacts felt through the wheel.  At the rear, the shock absorbers are longer and are mounted vertically, delivering greater suspension travel and smoother operation to improve ride comfort.
 
The stronger bodyshell, together with suspension upgrades, has enabled Kia engineers to create a car with significantly improved driving dynamics, ride quality and greater refinement.

Buyers will be able to choose between the latest versions of Kia’s 1.6-litre GDI gasoline and CRDi diesel engines, as well as six-speed manual and six-speed automatic transmissions.
 
 The 2014 Kia Soul has subtly larger dimensions.  The overall length is increased by 20 mm (to 4,140 mm) and the wheelbase has been extended by 20 mm (to 2,570 mm).  The new model is also 15 mm wider (to 1,800 mm), though the Soul’s height remains unchanged (at 1,610 mm).  The new dimensions also allowed improvements to the vehicle’s practicality.  The tailgate opening is now 60 mm wider, providing easier access to a larger cargo area, which has had its capacity increased by 4% to 354 litres (plus additional underfloor storage) with the rear seats upright.
 
Upgraded interior
Driver and passengers in the new Soul will enjoy a significantly quieter cabin, with higher quality materials throughout, and greater sound proofing compared to the outgoing Soul – interior noise levels are reduced by approximately three decibels.  

The cabin is also larger, with increased front leg room (by 20 mm), headroom (by 5 mm) and shoulder room (up 7.5 mm).  Rear legroom is also increased (by 5 mm).  Allowing even easier entry and egress, the new Soul’s step-in height has been reduced (by 5 mm), while seat hip points are lower (by 12 mm), front and rear.

Buyers can make a choice between single- and two-tone interiors, with black, brown and grey leather and fabrics available.  Blue, red and orange high-gloss interior highlights are also available with a new range of interior packages.

Specification and premium features
Promising a more rewarding ownership experience, the 2014 Soul will be available in Europe with a range of new premium features (depending on model), including: front LED lights and rear LED ‘halo’ lights; HID headlights; keyless entry and push-button engine start; automatic climate control air-conditioning; cruise control; leather seat trim; ventilated front seats; heated front and rear seats; panoramic glass sunroof; and heated exterior mirrors.  There is also the promise of advanced new connectivity features in future, while an optional Infinity sound system – tuned specifically for the new Soul – will also be available.

The new Kia Soul can be specified with a number of safety and convenience features to further give the new vehicle a ‘big car’ feel.  These features include: High Beam Assist, a first for Kia in Europe; Smart Parking Assist System, now with parallel parking functionality; and a Lane Departure Warning System.

Increased customisation
The new Soul will also carry over the outgoing model’s reputation for customization.  When the car goes on sale in 2014, buyers will be able to choose between 11 exterior paint finishes, as well as three different roof colours – black, white and red.  Eight different alloy wheel designs – ranging from 16-inch to 18-inch in size – will be available, including four new designs with coloured inserts to contrast – or match – the body colour.

The pair of new Kia Souls displayed on the Kia stand at IAA Frankfurt is fitted with a new SUV Styling Pack, featuring piano black bumper garnish, side skirts, wheel arches and black painted roof.  The new range of Soul accessory kits, available later in 2014, are designed to enable owners to fully enjoy and exploit the versatility of this unique compact SUV.

The all-new 2014 Kia Soul will go on sale across Europe next year when the full model line-up, choice of gasoline and diesel powertrains, performance, economy, equipment specifications and prices will be confirmed.


TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS [ EUROPE ] 

2014 Kia Soul 

Body and chassis 
Five-door, five-seater B-segment compact SUV with all-steel unitary construction bodyshell.  Choice of transversely-mounted four cylinder gasoline and diesel engines driving the front wheels via a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.  1.6 GDI
Transmissions 1.6 CRDi 
Manual
6-sp
6-sp
Automatic
6-sp
6-sp
     
Suspension and damping
   
Front
Fully independent by MacPherson struts, with coil springs and twin-tube gas-filled shock absorbers. Anti-roll 22 mm stabiliser bar 
Rear
Semi independent by CTBA (coupled torsion beam axle) with separate coil springs and gas-filled shock absorbers
   
Dimensions (mm)
 
Exterior 
 
Overall length
4140 
Overall width
1800 (excluding door mirrors) 
Overall height
1610 
Wheelbase 
2570

For more images click here.


SEPTEMBER 2013

Upgraded Kia Optima joins European model line-up

Frankfurt, 10 September 2013 – Since late 2011, Kia’s mid-size Optima sedan has been transforming the company’s market share in the European D-segment – inspiring and challenging many consumers to consider a bold and dynamically-styled Kia for the first time.
 
Now, responding to customer feedback and developments in the ever-competitive European marketplace, Kia is introducing an upgraded Optima with an enhanced design, new infotainment, convenience and safety features, increased refinement, improved quality and a more premium finish.
 
“With the upgraded Kia Optima, our global design team has penned a vehicle with even more distinctive styling that stands apart from everything else in the D-segment,” comments Benny Oeyen, Vice President Marketing and Product Planning, Kia Motors Europe.  “The original Optima was well-received when it was launched in 2011 and we are confident that the upgraded model, with its range of high-tech features usually associated with premium brand vehicles, will greatly boost our presence in this sector of the European marketplace.” 

Created under the direction of Kia’s Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer, the upgraded Optima features new headlights, fog lamps, rear lights, bumpers and wheels.  At the front, the LED daytime running lights are moved from the bumper into the headlight – consistent with other Kia models – and the fog lamps are set into a body-colour panel rather than the transverse black panel of the original design.

Optional four-point LED fog lamps generate a truly distinctive appearance and echo the dramatic appearance of the lamps fitted to the new Kia pro_cee’d GT and cee’d GT, as well as the Kia Quoris flagship luxury sedan. 

The upgraded Optima range receives three new 17-inch and 18-inch alloy wheel designs and a new sharper-edged trunk lid.  At the rear, the new larger rear light clusters can be ordered with surface-emitting LEDs and the twin red reflectors are now raised and set on a horizontal plane.

Customers keen to boost the visual impact of their vehicle still further can also specify a special optional ‘Sport Pack’, which comes with a black-mesh front grille, chrome trim around the lower air-intake, unique 18-inch, five double-spoke alloy wheels and a matt-black diffuser beneath the rear bumper.

The new Optima’s smooth contours enhance its aerodynamic efficiency and result in a drag figure of just Cd 0.29, minimising wind noise, while boosting performance and fuel economy. 

The Kia Optima is available in a choice of 10 colours, including seven metallic and two pearl, plus newly introduced Clear White (solid) and Smoky Blue (metallic) paint finishes.

Extra touches of luxury to refresh cabin 
The driver-oriented interior design of the 2011 Optima is retained, with detailed changes to the instrument cluster, steering wheel, centre stack, gear selector, door armrests and the seats – refreshing the cabin’s appearance and adding an extra touch of luxury.

The cabin can be specified with beige two-tone or black monotone finish.  Seat upholstery is flat-woven (Base models) or a combination of flat-woven with part leather (Mid models).  A full leather interior is also available as an option on Top models.  Buyers of left-hand drive Optima cars can also choose interior trim accents in black high gloss or light metal brush finishes.

The new cluster features a larger TFT LCD screen (4.3-inch, up from 3.5-inch), delivering more information with improved graphics.  The new steering wheel, which has a flattened lower rim on auto models, has the remote controls located on the horizontal spokes. 

The new centre stack houses an 8-inch information screen and is finished in black high-gloss, while the switch panels in the armrests come with satin metal or black high-gloss accents, depending on model.  Interior door handles are now finished in satin metal, rather than chrome. 

Front seats feature cushions with raised side bolsters and a higher leading edge, increasing lateral and under-thigh support for enhanced comfort.  Ventilated front seats and heated rear seats – with both low and high temperature settings – are available. 

Driver and passengers will appreciate the higher levels of refinement in the upgraded Optima – one of the key areas for improvement targeted by Kia engineers.  Measures adopted to reduce road noise in the new model include fitting a dynamic damper to the rear suspension cross member, changing the rear wheelarch covers to a BCF (bulked continuous filament) material for improved sound-proofing and fitting stronger alloy wheels.  Combined, these measures have reduced road noise by 3.3 dB.

Further noise reducing modifications incluide the use of additional sealants in the dashboard bulkhead and thicker carpets in the cabin of diesel models.

Introducing new features and technologies 
The already generous standard equipment of the original 2011 model is boosted with additional standard and optional premium features for the upgraded Optima. 

Drivers of automatic models can use Drive-Mode-Select to choose between three driving modes: the default Normal mode; Active ECO mode, which enhances fuel economy; and Sport mode, which delivers more immediate engine response and increases the weight of the steering. 

Both the audio and navigation systems for the Optima have been improved.  The new Gen3.0 A and Gen3.0 B audio systems now allow customers to connect an iPod to the car via Apple’s regular USB cable.  The new AVN 1.5 navigation system, which features a 7-inch screen, is available on all models.  A higher specification AVN 4.0 system with an 8-inch screen can be ordered on LHD vehicles. 

As an option, Kia’s Blind Spot Detection system is available.  As well as alerting the driver to cars approaching closely – by triggering a warning light in the door mirror – the BSD system incorporates Lane Change Assist (LCA) and Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA). 

LCA monitors following traffic and alerts the driver if changing lane might be hazardous.  Designed to improve safety in car parks, RCTA is activated when reverse gear is selected and monitors the zone at 90 degrees to the car, on both sides, sounding a warning if approaching vehicles are detected.  Both front and rear parking sensors are available. 

Best-in-class performance and low emissions
The upgraded Optima is available to European consumers with a choice of two engines carried over from the previous model – a 2.0-litre 165 ps gasoline engine and a 1.7-litre 136 ps diesel.  The latter is expected to account for the majority of sales in Europe. 

Fitted with a Variable Geometry Turbocharger (VGT) the 1.7-litre version of Kia’s popular ‘U2’ diesel engine produces 136 ps and 325 Nm of torque (from 2,000 rpm) for excellent driveability, and delivers best-in-class performance for an engine of its displacement (80 ps per litre).

A number of measures designed to enhance engine efficiency have been adopted for the new Optima, including an overrunning alternator decoupler and an innovative battery management system.  The result is competitive CO2 emissions for its class – from 133 g/km for the standard model, and as low as 128 g/km when fitted with Kia’s optional fuel-saving stop/start ISG system.  The Optima is among the lower vehicle tax bands in many European countries. 

The 2.0-litre gasoline powerplant is a ‘Nu’ lightweight engine which generates 165 ps and 196 Nm of torque at 4,800 rpm, while fuel economy is competitive, from 7.0 l / 100 km.  To increase the unit’s fuel efficiency, Kia’s engineers specified a two-stage variable induction system, an electronic throttle body, an off-set crankshaft and Continuously Variable Valve Lift (CVVL).

In Europe both engines are offered with a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions, providing greater refinement and efficiency while cruising at higher speeds. 

Generous standard specification continues
True to the company’s philosophy of producing cars that present excellent value for money, the upgraded Optima carries over the generous levels of standard specification found on the 2011 model, while also offering buyers a number of optional premium features. 

Most markets offer the Optima with a choice of Base, Mid or Top models.  Depending on model, available features include: SPAS (Smart Parking Assist System), smart key and start button with automatic folding mirrors; retractable panoramic sunroof; heated rear seats; heated steering wheel; BAS (Brake Assist System); ESC (Electronic Stability Control); HAC (Hill-start Assist Control); and VSM (Vehicle Stability Management). 

As with all Kia models sold in Europe, the upgraded Optima provides customers with the manufacturer’s unique 7-Year / 150,000 km warranty, which is fully transferrable to subsequent owners.

Global demand for the Optima is supplied from Kia’s Hwa-Sung factory in Korea, while cars for the Chinese market are manufactured in China.

 
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS [ EUROPE ] 

2013 Kia Optima 

Body and chassis 
Four-door, five-seater sedan with all-steel unitary construction bodyshell.  Choice of transversely-mounted four cylinder gasoline and diesel engines driving the front wheels via a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.

 

Engines

1.7-litre diesel 136ps
 
Type / capacity
U2 (4-in-line), DOHC, four-cylinder, with VGT / 1685 cc
Power / torque
136 ps (100 kW) @ 4000 rpm / 325 Nm @ 2000-2500 rpm
Emissions
Euro 5 
   
2.0-litre gasoline 165ps
 
Type / capacity
Nu (4-in-line), DOHC, four-cylinder, with CVVL / 1999 cc
Power/torque
165 ps (121 kW) @ 6500 rpm / 196 Nm @ 4800 rpm
Emissions
Euro 5
   
Transmissions
1.7 D
2.0 G
Manual
6-sp
6-sp 
Automatic
6-sp
6-sp
   
Suspension and damping
 
Front
Fully independent by MacPherson struts, with coil springs and twin-tube gas-filled shock absorbers. Anti-roll 22 mm stabiliser bar 
Rear
Fully independent multi-link, with coil springs and twin-tube gas-filled shock absorbers. Anti-roll 18 mm stabiliser bar
   
Steering
 
Type
Electric motor driven power-assisted rack and pinion
Gearing
2.94 turns lock-to-lock 
Turning circle
10.9 metres
   
Brakes
 
Front
300 x 28 mm ventilated discs (320 x 28 mm for 18-inch wheels)
Rear
284 x 10 mm solid discs 
Assistance
Single 11.0-inch booster (RHD = Tandem 8+9 inch booster) 
   
Wheels and tyres
 
Standard, steel
16 inch x 6.5J
205/65 R16 tyres 
Options, alloy
16 inch x 6.5J
205/65 R16 tyres 
  17 inch x 6.5J
215/55 R17 tyres 
  18 inch x 7.5J
225/45 R18 tyres 
   
Dimensions (mm)
 
Exterior 
 
Overall length
4845 
Overall width
1830 (excluding door mirrors)
Overall height
1455
Wheelbase
2795
Front overhang
965
Rear overhang
1085
Front track
1591-to-1601 (depending on wheels/tyres) 
Rear track
1591-to-1601 (depending on wheels/tyres)
Ground clearance
135
   
Interior
Front
Rear
Headroom
1015
955
Legroom
1155
880
Shoulder room
1455
1415
Hip room
1388
1384


 
Weights and capacities
1.7 D MT/AT
2.0 G MT/AT
Minimum (kg)
1562 / 1584
1501 / 1514
Maximum (kg)
2050 / 2050
2000 / 2000
Fuel tank (litres)
70.0 
 
Luggage (VDA)
505 litres 
 
     
Performance
1.7 D MT/AT
2.0 G MT/AT 
Top speed / kph
202 / 197
210 / 208
0-to-100 kph / sec
10.3 / 11.6
9.5 / 10.6
     
Economy and  emissions
1.7 D MT/AT
2.0 G MT/AT 
Combined (l / 100 km)
5.1 / 6.0
7.0 / 7.6
CO2 (g/km)
133 / 158
162 / 177 
     

1.7 D MT (with ISG) 
 
Combined (l / 100 km)
4.9
 
CO2 (g/km)
128
 

For more images click here.


SEPTEMBER 2013 


Kia innovates with new bi-fuel gasoline-LPG Picanto

• Three cylinder 1.0-litre Kappa engine generates 67 ps and 90 Nm
• Fuel consumption as low as 5.6 l/100 km, with even lower running costs than gasoline-only Picanto models
• Available with two equipment levels and two bodystyles

Frankfurt, 10 September 2013
– Responding to growing customer demand in Europe for small cars with low running costs and low emissions, Kia is introducing a bi-fuel model to its Picanto small car range.  Making its debut at the 65th Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) in Frankfurt, the new Picanto LPG promises even lower running costs than conventional gasoline-only Picanto models.
 
The new variant will record fuel economy in LPG mode of 5.8 l / 100 km and CO2 emissions of 100 g/km – with automatic stop-start (ISG) equipped models achieving 5.6 l / 100 km and 97 g/km.
 
The new Picanto model will be available with a choice of LX or EX equipment levels and five-door or three-door bodystyles – just like other models in the Picanto line-up.

“Kia is always looking for ways to fulfil every customer’s needs,” comments Benny Oeyen, Vice President Marketing and Product Planning, Kia Motors Europe.  “The Picanto LPG is designed to satisfy a clear demand for such a bi-fuel engine, demonstrating Kia’s determination to offer consumers across Europe the widest choice of products.

“The Picanto is one of the most competitive vehicles in the ‘city car’ A-segment, delivering premium features at affordable prices and we anticipate that the new bi-fuel model will prove particularly popular in those European countries where LPG is readily available,” adds Oeyen.

Initially, the bi-fuel model will be available in Germany, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Greece, Portugal and the Netherlands – where it expected to account for up to 7% of Picanto sales.  When it goes on sale later this year, the left-hand drive Picanto LPG will be the first, and only, LPG-powered car in the marketplace with a 7-Year, 150,000 km warranty.

Switching fuels at the touch of a button 
Picanto LPG is powered by a special version of Kia’s three-cylinder 1.0-litre Kappa engine which produces 67 ps and 90 Nm of torque.  To process LPG the engine is fitted with an additional fuel system featuring a solenoid valve, vaporiser (which turns the liquid LPG into a gas by reducing its pressure by 0.7 Bar), a gas filter and an injector module. 

Made in Korea, the highly efficient Kappa family of engines share many common characteristics, including dual CVVT (continuously variable valve timing), a cast aluminium block, off-set crankshaft, maintenance-free long-life timing chain and low-friction ‘beehive’ valve springs. 

The new Picanto LPG is fitted with two fuel tanks – the regular 35-litre gasoline tank in the regular position ahead of the rear axle and a 27-litre pressurised LPG tank located beneath the trunk floor in the space previously occupied by the spare wheel.  Trunk capacity is 152 litres (with rear seats upright) and a tyre-mobility kit is provided in case of a puncture. 

Drivers can switch from gasoline to LPG (and vice-versa) by simply pressing a button on the dashboard.  Apart from the addition of the fuel selector button, the only other change inside the Picanto LPG is the fitting of a new instrument cluster with two fuel gauges (gasoline and LPG) and two ‘low-fuel’ warning lamps. 

The LPG tank and the system’s equipment adds 51 kg to the Picanto’s weight, so in order to maintain brisk acceleration (0-100 kph in 14.5 seconds) the final drive ratio is lowered by 8.6% (from 4.235:1 to 4.600:1).  The Picanto’s top speed – 150 kph – is unchanged from the standard 1.0-litre gasoline model.

Retaining all the key Picanto assets 
While its powertrain has been modified, the new Picanto LPG retains all the key assets which have made the smallest Kia so popular throughout Europe, recording annual sales in excess of 50,000 units.

When the new Picanto was launched in April 2011, the character of the car was transformed from ‘cute and friendly’ into mature and handsome, with a design to turn heads, thanks to its dynamic design language – boasting a bold self confidence and maturity which remains unique in the A-segment.

While becoming more stylish, the 3.6-metre long Picanto remains an extremely practical car.  On the outside, overall vehicle length increased by 60 mm, and the wheelbase grew by 15 mm.  Although the latest Picanto is a larger car with more equipment, clever engineering and greater use of high-strength steel in the bodyshell resulted in it weighing up to 10 kg less than its predecessor – depending on model. 

Attention to small details of the exterior design improved the new Picanto’s aerodynamics, reducing its drag figure to just Cd 0.31 – better than the majority of A-segment cars. 

‘Big car’ comfort and convenience features 
The Picanto’s new found maturity is also reflected in the interior design, which sets a new benchmark in its class for material quality and trim choices, while offering buyers numerous ‘big car’ comfort and convenience features – many of them fitted for the first time on a car in this segment.  

Available features include: UV-reducing windscreen glass, automatically controlled air-conditioning, electric folding door mirrors, automatic light control with ‘escort’ and ‘welcome’ modes, passenger seat storage tray, under-floor storage box, retractable and illuminated cup holders, sun visors with illuminated vanity mirrors and a ‘gear shift indicator’ to encourage an economical driving style. 

Other features available include smart-key entry system with engine start/stop button, AUX, iPod and USB connections for the RDS radio CD player with MP3 compatibility, Bluetooth® hands-free with voice recognition, ‘active’ head restraints, driver’s knee airbag, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, reversing parking sensors and HAC (Hill start Assist Control).

Available safety equipment will include up to seven airbags (with a new driver’s knee airbag as an option on EX models), ESC electronic stability control, HAC hill-start assist control, and ‘active’ front seat head restraints to protect against whiplash injury in a rear impact.  The Kia Picanto achieved a 4-Star safety rating in EuroNCAP crash tests.

For additional safety, an ESS (Emergency Stop Signal) system is standard in Europe.  Sensors detect when the driver is braking suddenly and hard, and then flash the brake lights three times to alert following drivers that the car is slowing rapidly.

 
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS [ EUROPE ] 

Kia Picanto LPG Bi-fuel

Body and chassis 
Choice of five-door and three-door, A-segment hatchbacks, with all-steel unitary construction bodyshell. Transversely-mounted, three cylinder bi-fuel gasoline-LPG engine driving the front wheels via a five-speed manual transmission. 

Engines
 
1.0-litre 67 ps LPG
 
Type / capacity
Kappa (3-in-line), DOHC, three-cylinder, with dual CVVT / 998 cc 
Power / torque
67 ps (49.3 kW) @ 6200 rpm / 90.3 Nm (9.2 kgm) @ 3500 rpm
Emissions
From 97 g/km when fitted with ISG
   
Transmissions
 
Manual / speeds
5
Automatic / speeds
not available 
   
Gear ratios
 
1st
3.727
2nd
1.894
3rd
1.192
4th
0.853
5th
0.719 
   
Reverse
3.636
Final Drive
4.600 
       
Suspension and damping
 
Front
Fully independent by subframe-mounted MacPherson struts, with coil springs and gas-filled shock absorbers. Anti-roll stabiliser bar.
Rear
Semi independent by CTBA (coupled torsion beam axle) with separate coil springs and gas-filled shock absorbers.
   
Steering
 
Type
MDPS electric power-assisted rack and pinion
Gearing
3.4 turns lock-to-lock
Turning circle
9.8 metres (minimum) 
   
Brakes
 
Power
Single 9-inch (242.6 mm) diameter booster 
Front
241 x 18 mm, ventilated discs 
Rear
180 mm drums (models without ESC) 
  234 x 10 mm, solid discs (models with ESC)
Parking brake 
Mechanical on rear wheels 
   
Wheels and tyres
 
Standard
14 inch x 5.0J Steel
165/60 R14 tyres
Optional
14 inch x 5.0J Alloy
165/60 R14 tyres
  15 inch x 5.5J Alloy
175/50 R15 tyres
Spare
Tyre mobility kit
 
     
Dimensions (mm)
   
Exterior 
   
Overall length
3595
 
Overall width
1595 (excluding door mirrors) 
Overall height
1480
 
Wheelbase
2385
 
Front overhang
700 
 
Rear overhang
510
 
Front track
1421 to 1409 (depending on wheel / tyre combination)  
Rear track
1424 to 1412 (depending on wheel / tyre combination)
 
Ground clearance
142
 
     
Interior 
Front
Rear
Rear (3-door model)
Head room
1002
962
962
Leg room
1070
820
820
Shoulder room
1290
1280
1270
Hip room
1225
1139
1139
       
Capacities
     
Gasoline tank
35 litres
   
LPG tank
27 litres
   
Luggage (VDA)
152 litres (behind rear seats, to window line)
  870 litres (behind front seats, to roof) 
   
Weights* 
 
Minimum curb / kg**
905
Maximum / kg
1400
**excluding driver 
 
   
Performance* 
 
Top speed / kph
148
0-to-100 kph / sec
14.7
100-to-0 kph
41.0 metres (with rear disc brakes)
  41.2 metres (with rear drum brakes) 
   
Economy* 
 
Combined (l / 100 km)
5.8 (LPG)
CO2 (g/km)
100
   
Economy (with ISG)* 
 
Combined (l / 100 km)
5.6 (LPG)
CO2 (g/km)
97

* Figures stated are manufacturer’s estimates 

For more images click here.



SEPTEMBER 2013 

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Press Contacts

Vladislav Alexiev

Manager Product Communications

Phone: +4969850928354

E-mail: kme-press@kia-europe.com