Thursday, May 11, 2017

KIA MOTORS RETURNS TO MOM 2.0 SUMMIT FOR THIRD CONSECUTIVE YEAR

Automaker to Showcase Growing Line of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles at the Sold-Out Conference for Online and On-Air Content Creators
  • More than 800 leading bloggers, entrepreneurs and marketers expected to test-drive and create unique content with four award-winning Kia models
  • As part of the brand’s ongoing support of digital influencer communities, Kia will serve as the Host Sponsor of the 2017 Iris Awards ceremony which honors standout content creators and platforms in the parent media space
Irvine, Calif., May 5, 2017 – For the third consecutive year, Kia Motors America (KMA) will proudly serve as Premier Sponsor and Official Transportation Sponsor of the Mom 2.0 Summit, which takes place in Orlando from May 10-12.  The conference, attended by more than 800 leading influencers, content creators, bloggers, female entrepreneurs, and marketers, is designed as an open forum for sharing ideas, developing creative digital content and highlighting unique programs and platforms that engage audiences, online and beyond.  In addition, Kia is Host Sponsor of the 2017 Iris Awards ceremony, which honors stand-out content creators in the parenting media space.

At this year’s summit, Kia will feature hybrid and all-electric vehicles from the brand’s expanding EcoDynamics lineup, including the all-new Niro1 crossover, the Optima Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid models, and the Soul EV2, all of which were named by the editors of Kelley Blue Book’s KBB.com as “Best Eco-Friendly Cars” under $40,000.

“Kia is committed to sustainability and is investing more than $10 billion to develop new technologies that reduce emissions and increase fuel efficiency, so we are excited to share our growing lineup of EcoDynamic vehicles with attendees at the Mom 2.0 Summit,” said Kimberley Gardiner, director of marketing communications, KMA. “Digital influencers are connectors, and their followers seek advice and counsel from them, just as they would a family member, friend or trusted confidant. Building close and personal relationships with influencers helps extend the Kia story, and there’s no better place to do so than the Mom 2.0 Summit which represents the best and brightest in this ever-evolving genre.”

Kia’s support of the influencer community has been extended to include the brand’s role as Host Sponsor of the 2017 Iris Awards ceremony, which recognizes the finest expressions in art, commentary, commerce, philanthropy, ideas and connections, and celebrates the emerging industry overall. The Iris Awards will be handed out during a livecast gala ceremony on May 12.
“Kia’s continued dedication to this industry event, and now their support of the 2017 Iris Awards, underscores their celebration of the powerful content developed by today’s leading parenting media,” said Carrie Pacini, Mom 2.0 co-founder. “The combined total audiences of Mom 2.0 influencers exceed 100 million individual readers, fans and followers, and forward-thinking brands like Kia know that Mom 2.0 is a highly effective way to reach a large, engaged audience of parents across the nation and around the world.”

About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.  To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert.


About Mom 2.0 

Mom 2.0 is the premier professional community and annual Summit for parenting influencers and female entrepreneurs who create online content. Every year, leaders in media and industry converge at the Summit to compare notes, discuss ideas, and forecast what's next for women online and in the marketplace. Mom 2.0 was conceived in the fall of 2008 to facilitate a much-needed, focused conversation between moms and marketers in the growing online marketing and social media space. Even then, as Mom 2.0 launched its first sold-out event with 175 attendees, the conference was trending #1 worldwide on Twitter. And today, the conversation continues to grow. Operated by Texas-based Mom Media Enterprises, LLC, Mom 2.0 is one of several MME platforms that help connect moms, marketers and media throughout the year. The May 2017 Mom 2.0 Summit will bring together 800 influencers, bloggers, media, marketers and entrepreneurs to share best practices, content ideas and inspiring conversation.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

KIA MOTORS MANUFACTURING GEORGIA PRODUCES ONE MILLIONTH SORENTO IN THE U.S.


(West Point, GA.) May 2, 2017 – On Monday, Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. (KMMG) celebrated production of the plant’s one millionth Sorento CUV at its West Point facility.

Representing an investment of more than $1.1 billion, KMMG launched production of the Sorento on Nov. 16, 2009. It was joined by the Kia Optima mid-size sedan in 2011. Together with on-site and local suppliers, KMMG is responsible for the creation of more than 15,000 jobs in West Point and the surrounding region. To date, KMMG has produced almost 2.4 million vehicles.

“The Sorento is a special product to our KMMG team as it was the first vehicle assembled at our Georgia plant,” said KMMG CEO Harrison Shin. “Our team is committed to building the best vehicles in the world right here in West Point, Georgia and we dedicate ourselves to world-class quality each day. I want to congratulate our team on another remarkable milestone.”

Monday’s honorary vehicle is a snow white pearl 2018 Sorento SXL and will be on display in the coming weeks at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

About KMMG
Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. (KMMG) is the first manufacturing site in North America for Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, Korea. With an annual capacity of 360,000 units, KMMG is located on 2,200 acres in West Point, Georgia, and began mass production on Nov. 16, 2009. KMMG is home to the Sorento CUV and the Optima mid-size sedan, two of the brand’s top selling models in the U.S.   

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

2017 KIA CADENZA ACHIEVES TOP SAFETY PICK PLUS RATING FROM THE INSURANCE INSTITUTE FOR HIGHWAY SAFETY



Advanced Driver Assistance Features Earn Second-Generation Cadenza Prestigious Safety Award
IRVINE, Calif., April 25, 2017 – The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has awarded its highest designation possible, Top Safety Pick Plus (TSP+), to the 2017 Kia Cadenza, when equipped with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights. Defined by its luxurious refinements, expressive styling, advanced technology and refined powertrain, the Cadenza joins a growing number of Kia vehicles that have earned the TSP+ rating.  

“The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is one of the most respected organizations in the industry when it comes to evaluating vehicle safety, and this designation is a great achievement that speaks to Kia’s commitment to safety, quality and continuous improvement,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, KMA. “We are proud that the Cadenza received across-the-board good crashworthiness ratings, which is another testament to the efforts of our engineers and the integrity of our vehicles.”

To qualify for TSP+, the IIHS mandates that each vehicle earns “good” ratings in five crashworthiness tests – small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side impact, roof strength and head restraints – as well as an “advanced” or “superior” rating for front crash prevention and an “acceptable” or “good” headlight rating.

The 2017 Cadenza offers a suite of available driver assistance systems1 such as Kia’s first application of Smart Blind Spot Detection System1, which is designed to sense unintentional drifting toward a vehicle in the driver’s blind spot and, in certain situations, can automatically brake the opposite side front wheel to help maintain the vehicle’s intended course. Advanced Smart Cruise Control1, a Forward Collision Warning System1, Autonomous Emergency Braking1, and a Lane Departure Warning System1 are also available. For improved durability and reduced NVH, the Cadenza is built upon a strong foundation with a body structure composed of more than 50 percent Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS) — more than twice the amount used in the previous model.

About Cadenza
The 2017 Cadenza boasts luxury refinements with expressive styling, advanced technology, and refined powertrain. Designed at Kia’s California design studio, the second-generation Cadenza is available in three trim levels. The handsomely equipped Premium, Technology and Limited models feature an enhanced 3.3-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower and 253 lb.-ft. of torque. The powerplant comes paired to a highly efficient eight-speed automatic transmission, a Kia first for a FWD vehicle. The Cadenza offers available driver assistance features such as Advanced Smart Cruise Control1, a Forward Collision Warning System1, Autonomous Emergency Braking1, a Lane Departure Warning System1 and a Smart Blind Spot Detection System1.


About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Motor Mondays: ​Turbo power takes on Kia Soul critics

Kia Soul still rules while other small boxes like Nissan Cube and Scion xB fade into history. In fact with 145,748 units sold in 2016, it is Kia’s best-seller.

That said, I’ve heard plenty of complaints, mostly from auto reviewers, about Soul’s humdrum driving experience. It’s never been sporty, but I’ve always liked the Soul for its fun personality, unique looks and practicality.

So to widen its appeal for 2017, Kia brings turbo power to its Exclaim model. That still doesn’t make Soul a sporty ride, but does raise the fun factor – especially in Sport mode. But price also takes a leap.

While the Soul Base still starts at an affordable $16,995 with the 1.6-liter, 130-horsepower engine and 6-speed manual transmission, you have to move to the top-line Exclaim for the 201-horse turbo. It’s matched to a dual-clutch automatic transmission and prices from $23,695. The mid-level Plus splits the difference at 161 horsepower.

So it’s great to have more choice. The curious thing is, the turbo plant ekes out a win on fuel economy at 28 miles per gallon in combined city-highway driving versus 27 for all other models.
You definitely notice the turbo’s increased zip. You also get red accents, 18-inch wheels and a flat-bottom leather steering wheel. And it handles better than you might think for its tall stance. But it can be a little noisier than the other models.

As before, Exclaim also gets you a nice lineup of standards, including push-button start, blind-spot detection and rear cross-traffic alert. Kia’s UVO3 infortainment package also is standard and includes Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Forward collision and lane-departure warning systems, however, only are available on the Plus. Navigation, a panoramic sunroof and leather are among options.

Introduced as a 2010 model, Soul was redesigned for 2014 with only a few packaging changes until the addition of the turbo this year.

Soul came out of the 2014 makeover a bit more sophisticated than Gen 1, in particular addressing criticism over the use of too many cheap plastics.


Given the price, of course, you can’t expect a Mercedes here. But you will find a softer touch with better materials on the instrument panel, center console and doors.

The new generation also has slightly more room with plenty of space for five to cruise comfortably around town. Cargo capacity with rear seats in use also jumped from 19.3 to 24.2 cubes.

Fuel economy isn’t bad if you think of Soul as a small crossover, especially in turbo guise, but some such as Mazda CX-3 do better. If saving at the pump is a priority, though, Kia’s come up with yet another option with the new Niro, a small cross with hybrid power.

Kia Soul Turbo

Boxy 4-door compact with a kick

Base price:$23,695

MPG: 26/31

Manufactured: South Korea

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: 5 of 5 stars for front impact; 5 for side; 4 for rollover resistance; www.safercar.gov


Competitors: Chevrolet Trax, Ford Fiesta, Fiat 500, Honda Fit and HR-V, Kia Forte5, Mazda CX-3, Nissan Juke and Versa, Toyota Yaris

Bottom line: Always personable and versatile and now with more zip – at a cost

Thursday, April 20, 2017

FOUR KIA VEHICLES NAMED AMONG BEST ELECTRIFIED AND “ECO-FRIENDLY” OFFERINGS BY KELLEY BLUE BOOK’S KBB.COM


Editors’ List Names Cars “Stellar on Fuel Economy at Affordable Prices” 
  • Kia Niro and Kia Optima Hybrid ranked among 10 best hybrid cars under $40,000; Optima PHEV makes list of best plug-in hybrid cars
  • Kia Soul EV named one of the five best electric cars under $40,000
IRVINE, Calif., April 19, 2017 – As Earth Day 2017 approaches, four vehicles from Kia Motors America’s (KMA) EcoDynamics line-up have been recognized by editors of Kelley Blue Book’s KBB.com as top picks among “eco-friendly” cars under $40,000.  The trusted consumer website highlights vehicles with a variety of alternative-fuel powertrain configurations that can still accommodate the lifestyle and budget of many new car shoppers.

The 2017 Niro, offering an EPA estimated 52 mpg city/49 highway/50 combined for the FE trim1, and 2017 Optima Hybrid were named on the list of the 10 best hybrid cars under $40,000, while the 2017 Optima PHEV, with an EPA-estimated 29 miles of electric range2, ranked among the top plug-in hybrids under $40,000.  The 2017 Kia Soul EV made the list of five best electric cars under $40,000.

“We’re very proud of the strides the Kia brand has been making to achieve its goal of increasing electrification and improving overall fuel economy by 2020,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, Product Planning, KMA.  “Having four of our vehicles recognized by Kelley Blue Book as top ‘eco-friendly’ choices validates our priorities to the environment as well as our efforts to maximize affordability.”

Kelley Blue Book’s “eco-friendly” cars lists can be viewed at the following links: 10 Best Hybrid Cars Under $40,0005 Best Electric Cars Under $40,000 and 5 Best Plug-In Hybrid Cars Under $40,000.


About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.  To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert.



* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

2017 Kia Soul is a lot of car staring at $16,100

The Kia Soul was originally introduced in 2010 and it was the perfect car for its time. Fuel prices, recession recovery, and small stylish boxy cars were all the rage for millennials without money and seniors soon to be retiring. Kia keeps up that money saving big value trend with the 2017 Kia Soul.

The Soul comes in 3 trim types – Base Manual/Automatic, Plus (+), and Exclaim (!) The base model starts at $16,100 and gets you a 130hp engine with 27 mph and a 1.6L 4 cylinder engine. The Base Automatic is simply the Basic Manual with automatic transmission at $17,700. The + (yes, the plus sign. It’s actually pronounced plus) starts at $19,800 and comes with a 6 speed automatic with sportmatic shifting and a 2.0L 4 cylinder 161 hp engine with 27 average MPG. The ! (that’s pronounced exclaim) comes with a 7 speed dual clutch transmission and a 201 horsepower 1.6L turbocharged 4 cylinder that gets average 28 mpg.

We tested the ! version and the Kia Soul is deceptively large. Missing is the engine transmission column that takes up a huge amount of space and instead the seats sit closer without feeling cramped. The Kia Soul ! comes with 201 horsepower and its the most powerful Kia Soul ever made. That meant passing and accelerating in Miami traffic wasn’t mind blowing amazing but was great enough to feel confident when you need it.

We took the car on a 2 hour road trip to the Florida Keys Wild Bird Rehabilitation Center and was the only car that didn’t have trouble parking between mangroves. The 40.9 inches of front legroom and 39.1 inches of rear legroom meant no complaints from passengers big and small. And the 61.3 inches of cargo room (that’s with the rear folding seats down) means I can finally return my J√ĄPPLING Ikea chair.

The Kia Soul competes with a lot of different cars for your attention and dollar. Depending on who you ask the car compares to the Hyundai Elantra, the Volkswagen Golf, the Scion xB, the Nissan Cube, and the Honda HR-V. The Soul is so big on the insider it might be a small crossover. But based on first impressions it’s just a normal subcompact with a 8.9/10 from U.S. News.

I’m never a big fan of the default car navigation but Kia makes Android Auto and Apple Carplay easy to work with. Just plug in your phone and it pops up. I understand why manufacturers still have their navigation systems – not every road has cellphone reception – but I’m always finding Google and Apple do maps better.

Standard features in the 2017 Soul include cloth seating, a six-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, a USB port, and satellite radio. Optional features include include automatic temperature control, a rearview camera, a 5-inch touch-screen audio display, the UVO infotainment system with a 7- or 8-inch touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a 4.3-inch digital instrument cluster display, a Harman Kardon premium audio system, navigation, HD Radio, two USB ports, proximity-key entry, a push-button ignition, remote start, HID headlights, a panoramic sunroof, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, and forward collision warning.

2017 Kia Soul is available now starting at $16,100.

Source: http://communitynewspapers.com/miami-beach/2017-kia-soul-lot-car-staring-16100/

Thursday, April 13, 2017

ALL-NEW 2018 KIA RIO SEDAN AND 5-DOOR MAKE U.S. DEBUT AT NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW

Fourth-Generation Subcompact Touts Sporty Design, Greater Comfort, More Room and Refined Ride
  • Rio features available upscale convenience technologies such as a seven-inch touchscreen interface and UVO3 with Apple CarPlayTM1 and Android AutoTM2
  • Sedan and hatchback offer available Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)3
  • Targeting the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick designation and a 5-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 
NEW YORK, April 12, 2017 – With its eye-catching design and impressive roster of features, the all-new 2018 Rio sedan and 5-door are the latest additions to the world-class Kia Motors America (KMA) model lineup.  Penned at Kia’s European and U.S. design studios in collaboration with Kia’s design base in Namyang, Korea, this subcompact duo will bring an exciting combination of impressive fuel efficiency, innovative technology, advanced safety features4, everyday convenience and fun-to-drive character to value-conscious consumers when they arrive at Kia retailers later this year.

“Value has always been a core tenet for the Kia brand and the all-new Rio sedan and 5-door continue to underscore our commitment to those buyers looking for an entry-level vehicle but desire more than what the subcompact segment currently offers,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president of product planning, KMA.  “This fourth-generation Rio makes significant improvements over its predecessor in design, technology and passenger comfort, resulting in an even better value proposition for our customers, while raising the bar in the small-car segment.”

Attractive Exterior
Rio’s exterior is defined by crisp lines and smooth surfaces, providing a more sophisticated and sporty look over the previous generation.  The front end wears the latest iteration of Kia’s ‘tiger-nose’ grille, integrating newly designed headlights that are swept back for a more aggressive appearance.  In addition, Rio’s fog lamp surrounds have been moved outwards, creating greater visual width to the front fascia and a lower window line around the cabin provides the driver and passengers with a better all-around view.

The Rio sedan has been lengthened to 172.6 inches (from 172.0 inches) and the Rio 5-door is now 160.0 inches long (from 159.4 inches).  Both profiles feature a longer wheelbase of 101.6 inches (from 101.2 inches) and more upright A-pillars.  The sedan and 5-door are also lower and wider for a more balanced and athletic stance compared to the outgoing model.  And a well-creased shoulder line runs from front to back, further stretching the appearance of the car to give it a sleeker and more substantive look than what’s currently found in the subcompact segment.

The rear of the Rio is now more upright thanks to shorter overhangs and thinner, more expressive taillights. Like the front-end, the rear view of the car is wider, furthering a sense of stability.
The Rio rides on 15-inch wheels that have been pushed to the corners.  The EX trim’s sporty alloy wheel design underscores Rio’s fun-to-drive side and refinement.

Modern and Convenient Cabin
The Rio’s interior has become decidedly more spacious, modern and upscale with an improved instrument panel, more ergonomic layout and upgraded interior materials.  The cabin has also been redesigned to better accommodate the Rio’s new range of technologies.

Horizontal lines running the width of the dashboard mimic the exterior design and give the cabin a wider and more expansive look and feel.  For convenience, the center console offers a bi-level tray to better accommodate portable devices such as smartphones and small tablets.

Thanks to Rio’s larger dimensions and wheelbase, its cabin is among the roomiest in its class – the sedan’s passenger space is 89.9 cubic feet while the 5-door hatchback measures 90.5 cubic feet.  Front occupants will enjoy more head room, leg room and shoulder room while those in the second row will benefit from greater leg- and shoulder room.  These improvements are the result of re-profiled door trims, new material for the headliner and a reshaping of the dashboard.  Those looking for ample cargo room will not be disappointed with either the sedan’s 13.7 cubic feet or the 5-door hatchback’s 17.4 cubic feet.  With the seats folded down, the hatchback offers a voluminous 32.8 cubic feet with a low and flat cargo floor to accommodate luggage, small furniture or weekend gear.
The front seats have also been redesigned to enhance comfort.  They feature a slimmer design yet more cushion and padding to minimize driver fatigue during long commutes and road trips.
On the tech front, the Rio offers a generous roster of features including Bluetooth® hands-free functionality5, a six-speaker stereo with satellite radio and a rear-view camera system6.  Available only on the top-tier EX trim is a seven-inch floating touchscreen interface, UVO3 voice recognition infotainment system and smartphone integration through Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlayTM, all of which are not typically found in the subcompact segment.

Power and Efficiency
Available in three trims – LX, S and EX – the all-new 2018 Rio is powered by a carryover but enhanced Gamma 1.6-liter GDI four-cylinder engine, targeting improved fuel efficiency, better responsiveness and low-speed driving dynamics.  The main features of this unit are a high-pressure fuel system with direct injection, variable intake system, low-friction oil seals, and piston cooling-jets.  The well-engineered powerplant also utilizes an aluminum valve cover and block for reduced weight, while incorporating cast iron linings for increased durability.

Power is channeled to the front wheels through either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission in both the Rio sedan and Rio 5-door.  Output is a spirited 130 horsepower and 119 pound-feet of torque for a more engaging driving experience.

Advanced Platform
The unibody Rio’s all-new platform is not only dimensionally larger than the previous generation model, but is now underpinned by a completely new suspension geometry.   Weighing in at just 2,648 lbs. (manual transmission) and 2,714 lbs. (automatic transmission), engineers sought to refine the driving experience with more agile handling and improved ride comfort, and this was achieved by designing a fully-independent MacPherson strut front suspension and a torsion beam rear axle.  The new Rio sedan and Rio 5-door also benefit from a revised spring and damper setup that helps make the car more compliant and comfortable.  Stopping power comes from 11-inch disc brakes up front and drum brakes in the rear, while the EX model is outfitted with 11-inch disc brakes up front and 10.3-inch rear disc brakes.  In total, these modifications deliver crisp and nimble handling and improve overall driver confidence.

Rio’s solid structure makes use of advanced high strength steel to increase durability, collision test performance and torsional stiffness, while also reducing weight, for improved handling and ride quality.  For reduced noise, vibration and harshness (NVH), the Rio uses body sealing and bonding adhesives to dampen sound pathways throughout its construction.

Safety Conscious
The all-new Rio is targeting the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick designation and a 5-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Standard safety features include six airbags, side-impact door beams, Electronic Stability Control, a four-wheel Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) and Vehicle Stability Management (VSM)4.


About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.  To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert.




* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

1 Apple® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
2 Android™ is a trademark of Google, Inc.
3 Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) is not a substitute for safe driving, and may not detect all objects in front of vehicle. Always drive safely and use caution.
4 No system, no matter how advanced, can compensate for all driver error and/or driving conditions.  Always drive responsibly.
5 Warning: Driving while distracted can result in a loss of vehicle control that may lead to an accident, severe personal injury and death. Always drive safely and use caution.
6 Rear-Camera Display is not a substitute for safe driving, and may not detect all objects behind vehicle. Always drive safely and use caution.

Kia Niro Touring loaded with surprises

Roughly once a year a test car knocks my socks off, and the Kia Niro Touring has me amazed.

Looking at it you’ll say that’s not a car, that’s a crossover vehicle. And that’s what Kia wants you to say. The styling is typical Kia with a good-looking nose, tail and beautifully proportioned profile. It has a taller stance like a crossover, but (and this is one of at least two surprises) it is front-wheel drive, and as of now AWD is not an option.

Second surprise, from a driving standpoint, is that Niro is a hybrid.

It has an electric motor to go along with its 1.6-liter 4-cylinder gas-powered engine to create what sounds like a modest 139 horsepower.

In Normal drive mode the acceleration here is modest. But sliding the 6-speed Sportronic gear lever to the left into Sport mode the Niro jumps to life. Acceleration is quick and quiet as the electric motor propels Niro to normal city cruising speed.

I found myself leaving the shifter in normal mode, which is the most economical way to go, and then slipping it into Sport at stoplights.

Niro is so well put together, and along with that electric motor, is very quiet. Not many compact cars can claim this level of smoothness and quietness inside.

Handling? Well, again once in Sport mode the steering wheel’s feel firms up and the Niro behaves more like a sport sedan than economy hybrid. In Normal mode the steering is light and easy, but with Sport there’s a more precise feel with more feedback.

Ride is well controlled and pleasant. This is a small car, but not tiny and rides on a 106.3-inch wheelbase. That, along with an independent rear suspension, smooths out the ride considerably and keeps the car from becoming jittery over rough city streets. The Niro Touring comes with 18-inch tires. Other trims come with 16-inchers.

Braking is fine and the Touring model includes blind-spot warning and adaptive cruise control and lane-departure warning. A backup camera is standard.

Inside, the bright red test car featured a black textured dash, and being the upscale trim it came with black leather seats that were both heated and cooled. The seats have gray stitching to add to the interior’s style, plus graphite gray dash trim and gloss black edging by the center screen, shifter and on the doors.

Everything looks good and the dash is logically laid out with all buttons and gauges simple to see and use.

The main gauges are snazzy looking and the center screen is split to see radio and navigation at one time, or you can devote the full screen to either. Two climate control knobs are easy to use and all the adjustment buttons on the center stack are big enough to press with a gloved hand and the labeling is simple. Dual zone climate controls are standard.

Niro has a manual tilt/telescope steering wheel with the usual cruise control, trip computer, radio and phone controls on its hub. The steering wheel also is heated, it and the seat climate controls being conveniently found on the console, not several screens in on the main dash screen as more pricey cars and crossovers prefer.

Kia includes its UVO infotainment system with an easy-to-tune-and-set radio, plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. It also gives you 8GB of music storage.

Overhead in the gray roof liner is a power sunroof with pull-shut cover to block sun as needed. Sun visors also slide.

In the cubby below the center stack you’ll find the usual assortment of electrical hookups, including two 12-volt plugs, a USB port and auxiliary hookup. There’s also a coin holder in the console and a fine armrest with storage box beneath where you’ll find a charging port for your phone.

Seats are powered and include a power lumbar. They are well shaped and comfortable, but flatter in design than some. Still, they offer good hip and back support.

This is a four-door and there is ample room in the back seat for a couple of adults, plus Kia includes a monster 19.4 cubic feet of cargo room behind the rear seat. Fold it down — it splits and folds flat —​ there’s 54.5 cubic feet of room. That’s even more than last week’s roomy Renegade. Plus there is even some storage under the cargo floor for small items or tools.

I got 35.6 miles per gallon in about an even mix of city and highway. As with all hybrids, city mileage is projected to be better than highway. EPA says to expect 46 mpg city and 40 highway. It’s possible my love of the Sport setting cut into my mpg a bit.

Also note that the Touring model, because of weight added by its plethora of desirable equipment, gets lower mpg than other Niro models with less content. Those are expected to average about 49 mpg, says the EPA.

The Kia Niro FE starts at just $22,890, which bests many of its competitors, including the Prius V Two, Honda HR-V and Ford C-Max to name a few.

There are five trim levels. From the FE, pricing moves up to $23,200 for the LX, $25,700 for the EX, $28,000 for the Touring Launch Edition and $29,650 for the tested Touring model, which added only floor mats for $130 and an $895 delivery fee to hit $30,675.

So if you want hybrid efficiency that’s fun to drive and looks less nerdy than a Prius, this is a stellar choice, in fact, the only real choice. Niro is a winner and deserves a test drive if you’re in the hybrid market, or if you just want a good-looking car that delivers a fun, comfortable drive with super mpg.

Source: http://www.jsonline.com/story/money/2017/04/07/kia-niro-touring-loaded-surprises/100181018/

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Stinger Fastback Sedan Leads Way Upmarket for Kia

Kia’s upper-brand strategy appears similar to the approach its Hyundai affiliate took in launching its separate Genesis line. But it’s not clear whether Kia will go global with this plan or keep it within South Korea. 

SEOUL – Kia’s rollout of its’18 Stinger at the Seoul auto show was both a preview of the fastback sports sedan for the domestic market and an historical moment in the evolution of the automaker’s marketing strategy, an executive says.

With the Stinger, Kia is launching the automaker’s new premium-line strategy for Korea, according to Chang Sik Kim, executive vice president-sales and marketing.

The Stinger is the first of several high-priced rear-wheel-drive models that will wear a new “E” class sub-brand badge, he says.

“We at Kia Motors have made strenuous efforts to increase our brand value,” Kim explains. “Our premium lineup of rear-wheel-drive cars starts with Stinger, which will be marketing leveraged to Kia’s strength in design competitiveness.

“Next year a large premium model will be added to the premium line when we introduce the successor to the current K9 (called the K900 in the U.S. and Canada and Quoris in other international markets).”

Kim explains the premium line will be marketed separately but will remain under the Kia brand umbrella. All vehicles in the premium lineup will wear a new “E” badge to differentiate them, he says.

The badge consists of the new premium-line logo, which is formed with a stylized capital letter “E” surrounded by a broad silver circle. As applied to the Stinger, the vehicle’s name appears understatedly embossed in the lower portion of the circle.

When other brands are added to the lineup, the logo will remain the same, with the name of the vehicle applied to the bottom half of the circle.

It’s not clear whether Kia will take this premium-line strategy global or keep it within South Korea. Korea may be a test bed for the new upscale marketing concept.

Kia’s upper-brand strategy appears similar to the approach its Hyundai affiliate took in launching its separate Genesis line.

A spokesperson tells WardsAuto Kia’s new premium-line strategy applies only to South Korea for now. The new logo will be used only on vehicles sold in Korea, she says.

Gregory Guillaume, chief designer at the Kia European Design Center, spoke at the Stinger’s unveiling in Seoul about the coupe his Frankfurt-based team designed.

Guillaume says the Stinger is all about the joy of grand touring, of driving in open spaces and about passion, but “not with a burning desire to arrive at a destination first.”

Kia President Peter Schreyer, who is the chief design officer for both Kia and Hyundai, attended the auto-show presentation. He stayed very close to the team during development of the GT Concept on which the Stinger is based, and throughout every moment of the production car’s design evolution.

Schreyer is pleased with the outcome, and that Kia’s “latest baby,” as he calls it, has inspired the new premium-line strategy in South Korea.

One of the Stingers featured at the show was specially prepared to show off a new high-strength, lightweight carbon-fiber kit that includes the grille surround, air intakes and hood vents.

Also revealed at the show was a new speed spec for the Stinger equipped with a 365-hp twin-turbo V-6 and manual transmission. In that package the Stinger can hit 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in just 4.9 seconds, meaning it can do the traditional American 0-60 mph (161-km) sprint even faster.

The Stinger also is offered in Korea with a 251-hp 2.0L inline turbocharged 4-cyl. gasoline mill. Diesels are big sellers in Korea, so a 202-hp 2.2L turbodiesel is available in that market.

The Stinger will sell in Korea in both 2-wheel and all-wheel-drive versions.

Source: http://wardsauto.com/technology/stinger-fastback-sedan-leads-way-upmarket-kia

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

KIA MOTORS AMERICA ANNOUNCES MARCH SALES

IRVINE, Calif., April 3, 2017 – Kia Motors America today announced March sales of 49,429 units, led by the Forte family of compact cars with 10,289 units sold. The month also saw sales of the all-new Niro** climb to 2,704 units in the crossover’s second full month of availability.

About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.  To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert.



  MONTH OF MARCH
YEAR-TO-DATE
Model
2017
2016
2017
2016
Rio
1,246
2,475
3,072
5,366
Forte
10,289
10,406
25,062
23,922
Optima
10,204
11,725
26,945
29,768
Cadenza
437
593
1,125
1,552
K900
43
95
108
246
Niro
2,704
N/A
4,889
N/A
Sportage
5,560
6,804
15,414
17,467
Sorento
7,751
9,897
20,775
24,693
Sedona
2,769
4,241
6,418
10,231
Soul
8,426
12,043
23,920
33,076
Total
49,429
58,279
127,728
146,321
# # #


* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

** Quantities are limited.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Kia Sorento SUV offers three rows, top crash safety results

The 2017 Kia Sorento is a mid-size crossover that delivers oft-coveted third-row seating and the even more rare 100,000-mile Kia warranty. The ability to seat seven puts Sorento in an exclusive club, and Sorento impresses with its interior dimensions and excellent fuel economy.

In its 2016 redesign, this new Sorento got an uptick in its wheelbase and length by about three inches to increase cabin space and inch out the closest competition from Toyota and Honda.

The Sorento is an attractive mid-size SUV that looks modern, sophisticated and flowing, aerodynamic on the highway and around town. Long, lean lines and a tight nose make the available space inside ample. Look for standard 17-inch rims with bigger upgrades available.

Inside the Sorento you will find soft-touch surfaces and wide, comfortable seating. While top-line Limited models get soft leather seats, the base and mid lines are equally accommodating.

A contemporary dash blends straightforward backlit gauges with easy-to-see technology highlights and warnings. The front-row and second-row seats are comfortable, but the third row is smallish. Cargo space behind the third row is limited, but fold the seats down and there’s plenty of room for larger items. A hidden rear subfloor on lower trim models is a huge benefit to storage.

Kia’s Smart Liftgate makes it even easier to open the Sorento’s optional power hatch when your hands are full by eliminating the need for a push button on the SUV’s key fob and allowing you to simply stand near the rear for a few seconds with the fob in your pocket, and the liftgate opens.

The Sorento offers three powerplants. A 2.4-liter four-cylinder base engine delivers a respectable 185 horsepower, while a robust 3.3-liter V-6 offers up 290 horsepower. The turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 240 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque is a game changer for this size vehicle. I tested this setup, and it was a surprisingly responsive engine.

Mated to a standard six-speed automatic transmission, each powertrain offers either a front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive option. Look for a locking differential that splits the drive 50/50 front/rear. The V-6 is best for towing with its 5,000-pound rating.

The base 2.4-liter engine gets an EPA-estimated 21 mpg city, 29 highway and 24 combined. The V-6 drops to 17/23/19 mpg, and the new turbo four 20/27/23 mpg. All those specs are with front-wheel drive; all-wheel drive brings the mileage down by one mile per gallon.

The Sorento earns top crash test results in all five categories from the IIHS, as well as five stars from the NHTSA. Standard safety equipment includes side airbags and active head rests in front, and side and curtain airbags with rollover sensor. Extensive active safety features are available.

The 2017 Kia Sorento mid-size SUV packs value, good looks, a load of amenities and one of the best warranties in the business. The 2017 Sorento L has a base price of $25,400 for the four-cylinder with front- or all-wheel drive and a high-water mark of $43,900 for the V-6-powered SX Limited. An amply packed equipment package, the warranty and AWD make it an uncompromising consideration in this segment.

Source: http://chicago.suntimes.com/autos/kia-sorento-suv-offers-three-rows-top-crash-safety-results/

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

KIA SPORTAGE NAMED A 2017 MUST TEST DRIVE VEHICLE BY AUTOTRADER

Award-Winning, Fourth-Generation Sportage CUV Recognized for Sophisticated Design, Refined Premium Interior and Intelligent Packaging


  •     The 2017 Sportage stands out in the hot-selling compact CUV segment
  •     Cutting-edge design, engaging driving dynamics, advanced driver assistance systems, and premium materials take Sportage to the head of the class



IRVINE, Calif., March 24, 2017– The 2017 Kia Sportage has been named one of Autotrader’s 2017 Must Test Drive vehicles.  The prestigious consumer-focused program showcases the best new vehicles shoppers need to experience prior to making a purchase.  Award winners are selected by Autotrader’s editorial experts and have the potential to change the way a consumer perceives an entire segment or brand.

“Winning an Autotrader 2017 Must Test Drive Award is further testament to the transformation of the Kia brand and marks another accolade for the Sportage, our longest-running nameplate,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning Kia Motors America (KMA).  “Sportage balances world-class craftsmanship and outstanding design, while delivering a host of standard features at a low starting price.”  

To be honored as a Must Test Drive award winner a vehicle must be of the current or next model-year and available to purchase at the time of the awards announcement, have a base price under $75,000 and offer a significant value.  Vehicles also must score no lower than a 3.5 on Autotrader’s five-point scale.

“The redesigned Kia Sportage is on our Must Test Drive list mainly because it's so good at so many things.  The Sportage has a wide range of prices and options, has a unique look and comfortable interior. The 240 horsepower Sportage SX turbo is simply a blast to drive, something we were not expecting from a small SUV,” said Brian Moody, executive editor at Autotrader.

The 2017 Sportage, an IIHS Top Safety Pick + (when equipped with optional front crash prevention) wraps a contemporary design around a structure that is both stiffer and more spacious than ever before.  Advanced driver assistance technologies, significant suspension and steering improvements, and available intelligent AWD improve the Sportage’s driving dynamics while premium materials create a class-up experience.  The 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four found on the FWD SX Turbo makes 240 horsepower (237 on AWD models) and 260 lb.-ft. of torque, while LX and EX trims use a normally aspirated 2.4-liter engine that produces 181 horsepower and 175 lb.-ft. of torque.

About Kia Motors America

Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

About Autotrader

Autotrader is the most visited third-party car shopping site, with the most engaged audience of in-market shoppers. As the foremost authority on automotive consumer insights and expert in online and mobile marketing, Autotrader makes the car shopping experience easy and fun for today's empowered consumer looking to find or sell the perfect new, used or Certified Pre-Owned car. Using technology, shopper insights and local market guidance, Autotrader's comprehensive marketing solutions guide dealers to personalized digital marketing strategies that grow brand, drive traffic and connect the online and in-store shopping experience.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

2017 Kia Forte sedan is updated, retains value for money

Kia's compact Forte sedan retains its value-for-the-money status for 2017 while adding refined new styling, upgraded seat fabric, more features and a new, fuel-efficient engine.

Starting manufacturer's suggested retail price, including destination charge, for a base, four-door Forte with automatic transmission is $18,495. That's only $55 more than the comparable 2016 Forte and includes heated outside mirrors; Bluetooth, hands-free phone connectivity; keyless remote entry; power windows; doors and outside mirrors; outside temperature display; and a trunk that rivals that of some mid-size sedans.

Plus, the Forte, like all Kias, comes with the best new-car warranty package in the business, which includes powertrain coverage for 10 years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first, along with a limited car warranty for five years/60,000 miles. That compares with five years/60,000 miles for powertrain coverage and three years/36,000 miles for basic car warranty coverage for a 2017 Toyota Corolla.

The Forte is a recommended buy of Consumer Reports magazine, where predicted reliability for 2017 models is above average.

The U.S. government gave the 2017 Forte sedan an overall five out of five stars in government crash test results.

The five-seat Forte is also sold as a coupe and hatchback, but the sedan is the price leader with a starting retail price that's at least $1,600 below the others.

Amid today's changing tastes where car buyers increasingly prefer SUVs to cars, the front-wheel drive Forte continues to shine. Through February, it was the only Kia car with U.S. sales above last year's levels.

The new exterior styling is a mostly subtle change, but it makes the Forte sedan more closely resemble Kia's larger and pricier Optima sedan. The side profile of the Forte sedan is particularly attractive as it makes the car look like a coupe. The sleekly sloping rear roof doesn't intrude too much onto rear-seat passengers, who still have 37.3 inches of headroom.

The new 2-liter, double overhead cam, Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine produces 147 horsepower and 132 foot-pounds of torque at 4,500 rpm, which is nearly the same power as the previous 1.8-liter four cylinder.

But the engine works in a thrifty manner and with an updated six-speed automatic transmission. So fuel mileage is improved to a top federal government fuel economy rating of 29 miles per gallon in city driving and 38 mpg on highways for a 2017 Forte sedan with the automatic. With the Forte's 13.2-gallon fuel tank, it now can travel for up to 422 miles on a single fill-up.

A manual transmission is still offered in the Forte sedan for the new base engine.

An uplevel 2-liter, four-cylinder, direct injection engine without the Atkinson cycle that generates more horsepower and torque than the base engine is mated to the updated automatic transmission.

This 164-horsepower engine was in the test, top-of-the-line Forte sedan EX and provided good power that could get the front wheels to screech as they worked to grab the pavement during some startups.

Torque peaks at 151 foot-pounds at 4,000 rpm.

The test Forte sedan EX had three drive modes — Normal, Eco and Sport — and averaged the federal government's combined city/highway estimate of 28 mpg even though the car was driven in an occasionally aggressive manner and spent most of the time in Normal mode.

The Forte's ride and management of road bumps was nicer than expected for a lower-priced car, and passengers rode comfortably.

There was road and a bit of wind noise, and the engine was readily heard during accelerations.

Brakes worked strongly, and the electric power steering provided a decent road feel and response.

The test EX and the new mid-range Forte S sedan include a standard rearview camera.

Unfortunately, the base Forte LX automatic sedan does not, and buyers must pay $900 for an option package that includes a rearview camera.

Buttons and controls in the Forte sedan are well-marked and easy to understand, and the EX tester even had an illuminated glovebox.

Windows on the rear doors open all the way, the rear-seat floor is nearly flat and everyone gets a head restraint.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

2017 Kia Niro is most affordable hybrid SUV



 Kia's newest vehicle, the 2017 Niro, is the lowest-priced, gasoline-electric hybrid SUV on the market and is rated as high as 50 miles per gallon in combined city/highway travel.

Starting manufacturer's suggested retail price is $23,785 for a front-wheel drive, five-seat Niro FE with four-cylinder engine mated to an electric motor and lithium ion battery pack to generate a total of 139 horsepower.

The base price includes an automatic transmission, rearview camera, keyless entry, cruise control, seven air bags, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, audio controls on the steering wheel and a 7-inch display screen in the middle of the dashboard.

Even with luxury features added, such as a Harman Kardon premium sound system, leather-trimmed seats, power sunroof, navigation system and heated steering wheel, the Niro still can be priced under $31,000. This pricing undercuts other hybrid SUVs that combine power from an onboard electric motor with a gasoline engine for optimum fuel mileage, such as the 2017 Toyota RAV4, which starts at $29,990.

However, Toyota's 2017 Prius c small hatchback remains the lowest-priced hybrid car in the United States with a starting MSRP plus destination charge of $21,035.

While affordability is the Niro's most attractive trait, this small SUV also appeals with its comfortable seating positions, pleasant driving traits, decent passenger space and flexible, SUV-like cargo room.

Similar in size to the 2017 Honda HR-V and Buick Encore small SUVs, the five-door Niro slots below the Sportage as Kia's smallest SUV.

The Niro is sold only as a hybrid, so the onboard electric motor and lithium ion battery pack supplement the rather meager power — 104 horsepower and 109 foot-pounds of torque — of the 1.6-liter, double overhead cam, direct injection, four-cylinder engine.

Maximum horsepower totals 139, while torque can peak quickly at 195 foot-pounds to move the Niro in plucky, but not overtly sporty, fashion.

There's no droning or stressing of a continuously variable transmission in the Niro during acceleration as there are in most other gas-electric hybrids.

Kia uses a six-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission in the Niro for more natural-feeling gearing and responsiveness. It worked well most of the time in the test Niro Touring model. But occasionally, the transition between power sources felt less than seamless.

Regenerative braking and the engine help replenish the battery pack, but a plug-in Niro is due later in 2017.

The top fuel mileage of 52 mpg in city driving and 49 mpg on highways is for the base, Niro FE model, which weighs the least. City mileage is rated higher than highway mileage because the electric power is able to assist more often in city travel.

The test Niro Touring, which is the heaviest of all Niros at well over 3,200 pounds, was rated at 46/40 mpg by the U.S. government and averaged 38.8 mpg during the test drive with some aggressive driving. This real world mileage translated to an impressive 462 miles on a single tank of fuel.

Kia's newest vehicle, the 2017 Niro, is the lowest-priced, gasoline-electric hybrid SUV on the market and is rated as high as 50 miles per gallon in combined city/highway travel.

Starting manufacturer's suggested retail price is $23,785 for a front-wheel drive, five-seat Niro FE with four-cylinder engine mated to an electric motor and lithium ion battery pack to generate a total of 139 horsepower.

The base price includes an automatic transmission, rearview camera, keyless entry, cruise control, seven air bags, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, audio controls on the steering wheel and a 7-inch display screen in the middle of the dashboard.

Even with luxury features added, such as a Harman Kardon premium sound system, leather-trimmed seats, power sunroof, navigation system and heated steering wheel, the Niro still can be priced under $31,000. This pricing undercuts other hybrid SUVs that combine power from an onboard electric motor with a gasoline engine for optimum fuel mileage, such as the 2017 Toyota RAV4, which starts at $29,990.

However, Toyota's 2017 Prius c small hatchback remains the lowest-priced hybrid car in the United States with a starting MSRP plus destination charge of $21,035.

While affordability is the Niro's most attractive trait, this small SUV also appeals with its comfortable seating positions, pleasant driving traits, decent passenger space and flexible, SUV-like cargo room.

Similar in size to the 2017 Honda HR-V and Buick Encore small SUVs, the five-door Niro slots below the Sportage as Kia's smallest SUV.

The Niro is sold only as a hybrid, so the onboard electric motor and lithium ion battery pack supplement the rather meager power — 104 horsepower and 109 foot-pounds of torque — of the 1.6-liter, double overhead cam, direct injection, four-cylinder engine.

Maximum horsepower totals 139, while torque can peak quickly at 195 foot-pounds to move the Niro in plucky, but not overtly sporty, fashion.

There's no droning or stressing of a continuously variable transmission in the Niro during acceleration as there are in most other gas-electric hybrids.

Kia uses a six-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission in the Niro for more natural-feeling gearing and responsiveness. It worked well most of the time in the test Niro Touring model. But occasionally, the transition between power sources felt less than seamless.

Regenerative braking and the engine help replenish the battery pack, but a plug-in Niro is due later in 2017.

The top fuel mileage of 52 mpg in city driving and 49 mpg on highways is for the base, Niro FE model, which weighs the least. City mileage is rated higher than highway mileage because the electric power is able to assist more often in city travel.

The test Niro Touring, which is the heaviest of all Niros at well over 3,200 pounds, was rated at 46/40 mpg by the U.S. government and averaged 38.8 mpg during the test drive with some aggressive driving. This real world mileage translated to an impressive 462 miles on a single tank of fuel.
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The Niro, which is wider than the HR-V and Encore, felt stable and roomy and had an unexpectedly quiet interior.

Back-seat passengers have 37.4 inches of legroom, while there's nearly 42 inches for front-seat riders. Headroom all around is more than 39 inches.

The luxury features in the Touring model included heated and ventilated front seats, memory driver seat, blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert, turn signals in the outside mirrors, front and rear park assist, leather, sunroof, 18-inch wheels, and premium audio.

Outside styling is mainstream and not particularly memorable, but everything was easy to understand and well organized inside the Niro.

Rear seatbacks fold down flat to expand cargo space. The cargo floor sits up at bumper level, so there's no lifting heavy objects up and out.

All-wheel drive is not offered on the Niro, and towing capacity is limited.

Source: http://www.nwitimes.com/business/transportation/cars/kia-niro-is-most-affordable-hybrid-suv/article_ac2060b3-11e7-58f3-baf5-d7388ff39721.html

Thursday, March 16, 2017

2017 Kia Niro Quick Take



Hybrids are no longer the hot commodity they were 10 years ago, but automakers still need to pursue the technology to meet higher fuel standards. And while the Optima Hybrid is a solid alternative to the likes of the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry hybrids as well as its in-house rival, the Hyundai Sonata hybrid, Kia hasn't really offered a viable alternative to the hybrid poster child, the Toyota Prius.

That's the job of the new 2017 Kia Niro. It comes armed with an obvious styling advantage. It's not nearly as funny looking as the newest Toyota Prius, which was clearly inspired by a pile of arrowheads. Instead, the Niro looks blandly handsome, not unlike every other small Kia we've seen lately. Kia also dressed up the Niro with roof rails, some black fender trim, and just enough raised ride height to appeal to buyers who will buy anything as long as it's a crossover. We think hatchback or wagon is a more appropriate description, especially since all-wheel drive isn't available, but since we're not in the marketing business Kia can call the Niro whatever it wants.

Out and about in Priustown U.S.A.—Los Angeles—the Niro holds up nicely. You'll get about 38 mpg if you hammer it around, and more than 50 mpg if you're a casual hypermiler; most of the time we saw figures between 40-45 mpg, spot on the EPA's combined estimate of 43 mpg for a Niro Touring model like we had. Those aren't Prius numbers, but then again, nobody beats the Prius when it comes to avoiding its gas tank.

A non-hybrid hybrid

So it has the fuel economy chops, but the Niro never really feels like a hybrid. The engine switches on and off almost noiselessly at speed, and under acceleration the 6-speed automatic transmission shifts gears like a regular car, so there's none of the constant engine drone you get from the Prius and its continuously variable automatic transmission. With only 139 horsepower it's not a rocket, but the Niro has enough to get out of its own way, and that's fine by us. There's a Sport mode you engage by sliding the shift handle to the left from D, and it gives you sharper throttle response and heavier steering. We tried it but it just made the Niro feel jerky and nervous; we wound up leaving it in the default Eco mode instead. The firm suspension provides decent grip, but the ride felt harsh over freeway expansion joints and other sharp impacts. On the other hand, the brakes were firm and responsive and perfectly normal; engineers around the world have finally gotten blended hybrid regen braking right.

The quiet interior is a ringer for the Forte, Soul, and Sportage, or even the Sedona and Sorento, with clearly marked controls, a sensible layout, and overall high-quality feel. The comfortable front seats get heaters and coolers, and the decently sized rear seat happily holds two, with the third squeezed between. There's enough cargo area behind the second row to swallow the weekly grocery run, and if you need more the seatbacks fold for a nicely flat load floor. Just don't carry anything too heavy; a warning label on the cargo floor mat lists a maximum weight of 130 pounds.

Also: Class of 2018 – New Cars Ready to Roll

Our loaded 2017 Kia Niro Touring carried an MSRP of $32,840 including the $895 destination charge, but prices start at about $26,000, and you can even get a decently equipped example for less than $30,000. That's easily competitive, and a good price for a nice looking, fuel sipping hatchback like the Niro. Hatchback? We meant wagon. No, crossover. Y'know...car.

By Keith Buglewicz

Source: https://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-latest/2017-kia-niro-quick-take/2100003987/

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

KIA MOTORS EXTENDS MARKETING PARTNERSHIP WITH THE LADIES PROFESSIONAL GOLF ASSOCIATION

 Eighth Annual Kia Classic Tournament Returns to Carlsbad, California, March 20-26


  •     Family friendly tournament offers activities for golf fans of all ages; admission is free for active military members and their families as well as children under 171
  •     Defending champion, Lydia Ko, will compete against 143 of the world’s best players for the $1.8 million purse and an all-new 2017 Kia Cadenza premium sedan



IRVINE, Calif., March 10, 2017 – With the eighth annual Kia Classic tournament less than two weeks away, Kia Motors America (KMA) today announced the multi-year renewal of the company’s marketing relationship with the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA).  As the “Official Automotive Partner” of the LPGA, Kia will have a presence at seven tournaments, including two Majors – the ANA Inspiration and the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship – in addition to title sponsorship of the Kia Classic.

“Both Kia and the LPGA have experienced tremendous growth in visibility and awareness as a result of our partnership, and we are proud to extend the relationship and look forward to several more years of successful collaboration,” said Kimberley Gardiner, director of marketing communications, KMA.

The Kia Classic, which returns to the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Carlsbad, California, March 20-26, offers fans of all ages an up-close and personal experience with 99 of the top 100 players on the 2016 LPGA money list as they vie for a share of the $1.8 million purse. Family friendly activities taking place throughout the event include junior golf clinics and player autograph sessions.  A fleet of Kia vehicles will transport players around the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort grounds and the winner of the Kia Classic will walk away with the keys to a 2017 Cadenza premium sedan.

As a continuation from last year, the LPGA has committed to donating a portion of the proceeds from the 2017 Kia Classic ticket sales to Hire Heroes USA, a national non-profit organization that helps military veterans find civilian jobs. In addition, all active duty military members and their families (with ID) will receive complimentary admission to the Kia Classic throughout the week, including Military Appreciation Day on Friday, March 24.

“As a Southern California-based company, Kia always looks for ways to give back to our local communities and we are thrilled to welcome Hire Heroes USA back to the Kia Classic,” continued Gardiner.

At the 2016 Kia Classic, world number-one ranked Lydia Ko took home the $225,000 winner’s check and a Kia K900, with her 19-under par 269 score and four- shot win over Inbee Park.

Coverage of the LPGA Kia Classic will air on the Golf Channel, and fans will be able to watch highlights of the tournament played on the challenging par-72 course. Check local listings for full coverage details. Fans can also follow the action online through the social media channels using @LPGAKiaClassic; @Kia and #KiaClassic.

For the complete list of special events, to purchase tickets or to sign up to volunteer, please visit www.KiaClassic.com.

About Kia Motors America

Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Kia Optima Sportswagon Sure Looks Great as a Plug-In Hybrid


Kia has just unveiled a plug-in-hybrid version of its attractive Optima Sportswagon, and all we see is another opportunity to campaign for this handsome station wagon to come to the United States. After all, the Optima sedan is already sold here in plug-in-hybrid form, and this new wagon version only increases its practicality and visual appeal. Who doesn’t want a 40-plus-mpg station wagon?

As you’d expect, the Sportswagon’s gasoline-electric drivetrain is identical to the sedan’s, combining a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with an electric motor that sources power from a 11.3-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. In the U.S., the plug-in-hybrid sedan version is rated to go 29 miles on electric power alone before the gas engine kicks in. Where the wagon version differs, of course, is aft of the C-pillar, where its large cargo area holds a whole lot more stuff than the sedan and its restricted 10-cubic-foot trunk. Kia said it has packaged the battery under the cargo floor to minimize intrusion into the cargo area, and the rear seats fold flat just as in the standard Optima wagon.

We realize it’s probably a flight of fancy to think that Kia would ever bring this electrified station wagon to our shores, given the state of both the wagon and plug-in-hybrid markets on our shores. But we still hold out some hope that Kia will listen to our pleas: Help save the wagons with attractive Euro-market longroofs like this one.

Source: http://blog.caranddriver.com/the-kia-optima-sportswagon-sure-looks-great-as-a-plug-in-hybrid/

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Soul and Cadenza Named Best Cars for Families by U.S. News & World Report


  •     Soul wins for second year in a row
  •     Cadenza wows with its accommodations for busy families



IRVINE, Calif., March 7, 2017 — The 2017 Soul and Cadenza have received 2017 Best Cars for Families awards from U.S. News & World Report. Vehicles were judged on their safety, seating and cargo volume, reliability and the availability of family-friendly features. U.S. News & World Report selected the Soul from 20 competitors in the Compact Cars category while the Cadenza was chosen from a field of 11 competitor vehicles in the Large Car category.

“We’re thrilled to receive these great awards,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning KMA, “because they speak to the effort we put into creating vehicles that families will love. It’s part of Kia’s global commitment to offer attractive, reliable and dynamic vehicles with tremendous value. Being awarded Best Cars for Families by U.S. News & World Report is testimony to those efforts and we couldn’t be more proud.”

The Kia Soul was noted for outstanding ergonomics and tech features that make it a great choice for families. “The ride height is neither too low nor too high, making it easy for both little kids and grandparents with limited mobility to get in,” said U.S News & World Report Autos managing editor Jamie Page Deaton. “Parents of teen drivers can get some peace of mind with the Soul's UVO1 system, while Apple CarPlay™2 and Android Auto™3 keep families connected with limited distraction on the road. Plus, its styling makes it a real standout in the school pickup lane.”

U.S. News & World Report similarly praised the Cadenza. “The same features that make the Kia Cadenza luxurious for adults make it a great choice for families,” said Page Deaton. “Rear sunshades keep backseat passengers cool so they can ride or nap in peace. UVO teen-driver controls make it easier to hand the keys over to new drivers, and Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ make it easier to access common smartphone functions without having to learn a new operating system.”

The hip and popular 2017 Kia Soul is available in three trim levels, including the new 201-horsepower turbocharged Exclaim4, and as a battery electric version, the Soul EV. Prices range from $16,100 to $35,950.5 Cadenza is all new for 2017 and is winning accolades for its elegant design and luxurious amenities. Offered in three trims, Cadenza prices range from $31,990 to $44,390.5

About Kia Motors America

Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

KIA MOTORS AMERICA ANNOUNCES FEBRUARY SALES

Best-Ever February Sales for the Forte Family of Compact Cars
IRVINE, Calif., March 1, 2017 – Kia Motors America today announced February sales of 42,673 units, led by the Optima midsize sedan with 8,892 units sold. The month also saw the best February sales performance in company history for the Forte family of compact cars, and 2,143 units of the all-new Niro crossoversold in its first full month of availability.
About Kia Motors America
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. Recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand, Kia proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and crossovers built at North American manufacturing plants in West Point, Georgia* and the municipality of Pesqueria in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

.

 
MONTH OF FEBRUARY
YEAR-TO-DATE
Model
2017
2016
2017
2016
Rio
840
1,461
1,826
2,891
Forte
8,506
8,187
14,773
13,516
Optima
8,892
9,630
16,741
18,043
Cadenza
372
585
688
959
K900
31
83
65
151
Niro
2,143
N/A
2,185
N/A
Sportage
5,231
5,860
9,854
10,663
Sorento
6,845
8,101
13,024
14,796
Sedona
2,111
3,988
3,649
5,990
Soul
7,702
11,842
15,494
21,033
Total
42,673
49,737
78,299
88,042

# # #

* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts
i Quantities are limited. LX and EX trims expected to arrive at dealerships Spring 2017.