Kia Seltos Coming to America After All


When the 2020 Kia Seltos first made its appearance overseas, it was unclear if the new crossover from Kia would make it to North America. After all, many automakers tend to release vehicles in their home country that are never made available in the North American market, or just not the U.S. There were a lot of interesting configurations and much more potential for the Seltos in the Indian market, and with the already large selection of SUVs and crossovers Kia Motors has in the U.S. market, it didn’t seem necessary. Well, after the 2019 LA Auto Show commenced, Kia announced that yes, the Kia Seltos will be added to its growing lineup in the North American market. During the show, we also finally got a look at some of the U.S. specs.

2020 Kia Seltos U.S. Specs

Thankfully when vehicles come stateside, their lineup is trimmed down and configured to what those consumers look for. The 2020 Kia Seltos in the Indian market comes with a number of trims, eight in total, each with another variation depending on the engine choice and transmission. Consumers in America still get plenty of choices, but it’s more standardized. The U.S. Kia Seltos will come in five trim levels with two engine options and the choice of a front- or all-wheel drivetrain.

The powertrain choices are of course different, now with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine as the standard, able to generate 146 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque. Standard on the 2020 Kia Seltos will also be a continuously variable transmission. The torque may seem like a smaller number in comparison with the Indian market Seltos, able to generate 184 lb-ft of torque with a 115-horsepower 1.5-liter diesel engine, but don’t fret. A smaller, turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine is the next option up on the 2020 Kia Seltos U.S. list of powertrains, and this little turbo can generate up to 175 hp and 195 lb-ft. It’s also tied to a dual-clutch transmission.

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2020 Kia Telluride Makes it to Finals in 2020 NACTOY


Back in August, the list for eligible vehicles being entered into the North American Car, Utility and Truck of the Year (NACTOY) awards was released. Out of these eligible vehicles were 2020 Kia Soul and 2020 Kia Telluride, both able to win the awards in their respective segments. As we draw ever nearer to the date of the awards, January 13, 2020, the semi-finalists round has passed and jurors are narrowing down the list for the final vehicles with a chance to win an award. If you haven’t gotten tired of all the good news for the 2020 Kia Telluride, then you’re in luck! The 2020 Kia Telluride was named one of three finalists for the 2020 NACTOY at the 2019 LA Auto Show.

“The Telluride is the first Kia vehicle designed specifically for the U.S. market and the impact it has made while reintroducing the Kia brand to Americans is nothing short of incredible…Demand for Telluride continues to outpace supply ten months after our flagship SUV first arrived in showrooms, and we are honored that Kia has been named a finalist for the prestigious North American Utility Vehicle of the Year award.” – Michael Cole, president, Kia Motors America (KMA).

All vehicles entered into the NACTOY awards must (1) be an all-new model, or still early in its production run and (2) be available at dealerships within a reasonable time from the announcement of the awards, usually before the end of the year. Then, it’s up to a panel of 50 judges to months driving dozens of new vehicles throughout the year. Even with the red-hot competition this year, especially for the tough utility category with a variety of mainstream and luxury vehicles, three-row crossovers, and a new electric SUV, the large Kia Motors SUV made it into the final round. This year, the field of semi-finalists included 12 models in the utility category that the Telluride won out over.

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2020 Kia Telluride Named on Car and Driver 10Best Trucks and SUVs list


This month is just so amazing for the 2020 Kia Telluride, we feel like we could cry tears of joy – oh jeez, call the Wahmbulance, because our little big SUV just won another top honor in the industry. Right on the heels of being named SUV of the Year by MotorTrend and winning two awards during the 2019 Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) Texas Truck Rodeo, the 2020 Kia Telluride SUV also landed on one of Car and Driver’s 10Best lists. Yowza.

For those not in the know, let’s do a run-down of why this is important news. Car and Driver is a very well-known auto industry publication held in the highest regard by car enthusiasts and automotive manufacturers alike. Known for its expert editorial team, over the years they have displayed integrity, engineering insights, and high standards. Absolutely a leading online source of information, when reviewing the auto market, Car and Driver holds the largest audience of any monthly automotive magazine and every year puts together a number of 10Best lists.

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2020 Kia Telluride Rounds Up 2019 TAWA Truck Rodeo


All the way back in May, 2019, springtime was fierce and so was the competition of new model year vehicles. Every year, many publications and organizations hold award shows and competitions between all kinds of vehicle categories. Some people just like their input heard whereas a lot of these competitions are about giving consumers the ability to make an informed decision when buying a car in the market. One of these organizations is the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA). Every year, once in the spring and again in autumn, they hold two large events – the Texas Auto Roundup and the Texas Truck Rodeo, respectively. The Kia Telluride won the “Mid-size crossover” category and was named the “CUV of Texas”. Now at the 2019 Truck Rodeo, the Kia Telluride strikes again.

Wow, and right after MotorTrend named the 2020 Kia Telluride SUV of the Year. We swear, we didn’t plan this. It’s just more proof that when Kia Motors makes a great vehicle, people notice. Plus, it’s the end of the year, 2020 is just out of reach. It’s time to find out the best-of-the-best for those end-of-the-year savings everyone is waiting on. Like Black Friday, just because it’s suddenly affordable doesn’t mean it’s the one to buy.

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HMG and Kia Motors Launch MoceanLab


The Hyundai Motor Group (HMG) is one of several automobile groups working towards an interconnected and mobile future. Back in October 2019, the HMG signed a contract with Aptiv, a global technology company dedicated to developing safer, greener, and more connected solutions for the future of mobility. Together, the two entered a joint-venture to work towards a global autonomous driving ecosystem. Now in November 2019, the HMG establishes a new mobility service venture to further that initiative. For those not in the know, Kia Motors is one of the brands under the HMG umbrella, just like Jeep and Dodge are under the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) umbrella – good news for HMG means good news for Kia.


They’re calling it “MoceanLab”. Was “Motion Lab” already taken? Perhaps the name came from the city the project is launched in. After considerate review, the HMG chose Los Angeles as the home base of MoceanLab. With the large and diverse population, challenges with traffic congestion, and the progressive commitment to transportation innovation and sustainability (the number one state self-driving vehicles go to for test rounds), L.A. was the prime choice for launching a new mobility platform.

“Hyundai Motor Group will introduce innovative mobility platforms and demonstrate diverse mobility services in Los Angeles…More and more customers, including citizens of LA and tourists, will greatly benefit from MoceanLab as its service gradually covers a larger area of LA and diversify its mobility services. With such efforts, Hyundai Motor Group aims to lead the technology development for clean mobility.” – Kyounglim Yun, Executive Vice President of HMG.

That’s right, the HMG is working on launching their own self-driving car sharing program. We can see some influence of their joint-venture with Aptiv, the company that conducted the first coast-to-coast automated drive in the United States, has deployed commercial autonomous vehicles on a global scale, operates more than 100 autonomous vehicles on multiple continents, and is the leading ride-hailing network in Las Vegas. However, the MoceanLab project is starting small with a pilot program.

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2020 Kia Telluride Named SUV of the Year by Motor Trend


It’s that time of year again, folks! Auto publications around the internet and the world are starting to hold award shows, put together lists of the “Best of…”, and there’s just so much good news for everyone. One hot Kia Motors vehicle we can’t get enough of is the 2020 Kia Telluride. There are so many reasons to love the Kia Telluride, and it’s such a large SUV, the Kia Telluride is perfect for pets. Now, the 2020 Kia Telluride was just named the SUV of the Year by automobile magazine MotorTrend.

“The Telluride has been an undeniable success since its launch earlier this year, with an impressive number of consumers rediscovering Kia in the highly competitive SUV segment and more than 45,000 units sold to-date…Earning MotorTrend’s coveted SUV of the Year award is an honor and a historic moment for the brand, serving to further reinforce Kia’s transformation to a world-class automaker.” – Michael Cole, president, Kia Motors America

So true. The 2020 Kia Telluride spearheaded sales for Kia Motors in March, the same month as its release. Alone, the large Kia SUV made up a tenth of total sales for that month, with a total of 5080 units sold. That kind of love can only come from an SUV that has everyone talking. Plus, with its versatility, the Telluride has something for everyone. It all starts in its birthplace, or places – designed in California but assembled in Georgia – the 2020 Kia Telluride provides consumers with a stylish exterior that is only matched by its comfortable and functional interior. At the end of the day, the Telluride is a well-rounded vehicle that meets the needs of today’s modern families.

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The Roomy Kia Telluride is Perfect for Pet Proofing


Ah, the seasons are changing and winter is fast approaching. All over the country, even here in South Florida, it’s getting colder and in-between shopping trips and from the office to the parking lot, some of us can’t wait to get into the warmth of our cars. For those of us with families, kids can’t wait to hop in, no matter what dirt – or snow – they may track in. The same goes for pets, and with the old school tradition of buying a puppy for the holidays, there are sure to be a handful of consumers out there looking for a little extra room and some helpful tips on pet proofing their vehicle. Why not take a look at the roomy 2020 Kia Telluride?

The 2020 Kia Telluride is the largest SUV in the Kia Motors lineup. With three rows of seats, able to sit up to eight people including the driver, and the option to change the configurations of the cabin for cargo space, there’s plenty of room to stretch out. There’s plenty of legroom in every row and for those who want to keep larger dogs in the back row, it’s easy to get in with the push of a button that tilts and slides the second-row forward.

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A Look at the New 2021 Kia Optima


Near the end of October 2019, renderings of the K5 in South Korea started making rounds on the internet. One of the reasons why the new K5 garnered interest was because K5 is the name given to the Kia Optima in the South Korean market. Put two and two together, and word was that these new renderings were also concept renderings for the new 2021 Kia Optima. It may not look as futuristic as the rendering, but we’d be lying if we didn’t say the new 2021 Kia Optima is looking fresher than ever. There’s even some sports car appeal in there.

From Render to Reality

You know, it’s not often that a concept or render will keep the same looks and features once the vehicle goes into production. The 2020 Kia Telluride SUV is a prime example of an automaker beefing up a concept with a bunch of cool technology that gets left on the cutting room floor. We expected the same to happen to the 2021 Kia Optima, but so far, it’s looking a lot like the render Kia Motors promised. Starting with the front fascia, those lightning-bolt shaped headlights are still drawing attention to the new mean tiger-face grille that Kia Motors is using to replace their well-known tiger-nose grille. This vehicle is most likely not electric, so there are still two grilles integrated into the front, but with the Kia Futuron concept, an all-electric vehicle from Kia Motors may already be on the way.

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What Happened to All the Cool Kia Telluride Concepts?


The 2020 Kia Telluride is Kia Motors largest SUV. Blurring the lines of luxury and receiving a Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the Telluride has a lot going for it. The 2020 Kia Telluride even wins out on comparisons with competitors – even the Hyundai Palisade pales in the face of the 2020 Kia Telluride. However, when the 2020 Kia Telluride concept was first unveiled, there was a lot more in store than what made it into production. One of the reasons the 2020 Kia Telluride got the green light for production, and the reasons why it got the green light in the first place, was because of the great reception the concept received from consumers and reporters when it debuted at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show. So, imagine the surprise when half of the reasons why people liked it disappeared.


What We Were Promised

When the first concept of the 2020 Kia Telluride debuted in Detroit, it was supposed to be a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) SUV. If Kia Motors could do it with a crossover, an SUV was the next logical step. We knew an internal combustion engine (ICE) would make up half the powertrain, but 3.8-liter Lambda DOHC 24-valve V6 engine dashed that plan. With Kia Motors planning to go all-electric, the Telluride PHEV may already be on the cutting room floor.

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Kia Motors New All-Electric Futuron Concept


When Kia Motors first said it was going to become an all-electric automaker, there was a little confusion. How can an automaker that has plans to produce GT vehicles like the recent 2020 Kia Forte also become an all-electric automaker? Kia Motors GT-line is how it sounds – it’s a lineup within the lineup and only certain vehicles like the Kia Forte, the Kia Soul, and the Kia Optima may get GT-specific trims. Electric vehicles on the other hand? Well, Kia leaked a rendering of the new 2021 Kia Optima, known as the K5 overseas, and the grille is all but absent. So, imagine our excitement when we saw this little number – the Kia Futuron concept (pictured above).

Yeah, that’s hot. Although the 2019 SEMA Show is happening between November 5 – November 8, 2019, Kia Motors decided to debut their new concept overseas during the 2019 China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai. A bit of a shame, we’d love to get a better look at a prototype, but all the current media on it only shows renders. Either way, the Kia Futuron concept is an all-wheel drive SUV coupe with a fully electric powertrain.

Based on first looks alone, this concept definitely looks like a sports car. The flowing shapes and streamlined design definitely create an aero-efficient profile that can slice through the atmosphere, and the low-profile keeps it looking strong yet also elegant. Some may be wondering why we’ve never seen a design like this before, with the wide stance and long wheelbase. It’s the Futuron’s fully-electric powertrain that makes this possible.

Mounted low in the vehicle’s body, beneath the cabin floor, a high-capacity battery not only provides electrical energy to four powerful electric motors embedded in the wheels but can also help to keep the vehicle grounded with a low center of gravity. Matched with a cutting-edge e-AWD system, and we have the beginnings of an all-electric sports car. We assume they’re talking about the all-wheel drivetrain transfer case Kia Motors was working on back in 2018.

Shown in the concept renders, the roof is a diamond-shaped panoramic glasshouse that floods the cabin with natural light and offers everyone inside a great view. On top of this, inching closer to self-driving vehicles, the Futuron concept comes with a network of LiDAR (light detection and ranging) sensors capable of providing Level 4 autonomous driving. That’s when the driver doesn’t even need to control the vehicle in a majority of driving conditions.

The new “tiger-face” Kia Motors keeps pushing is also apparent in the design of the Futuron. No longer subtle and soft, Kia is going for a tighter, more aggressive, yet elegant “tiger face”. If we’re being real, this concept looks a lot like the Imagine by Kia concept the automaker unveiled at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show. The Futuron also has a new interesting take on headlamps with a “Star Cloud” design made to reflect the look of nebulae in the night sky with a geometric patchwork of matrix LED lighting.

Step inside and an all-electric powertrain definitely makes for a more spacious cabin for the driver and passengers. Plus, the two front seats are made out of flexible materials and can offer an upright “driving” position or a reclined “rest” position. With the level 4 autonomy engaged, the two front seats will actually fully recline, and the steering wheel retracts to offer a “zero-gravity” seating position for some rest and relaxation on a long drive.


Going for a little unique flare, the interior comes with Star Cloud lighting and scaled Dragon Skin motifs that pay respects to Chinese legend Dragons and the scaled armor that adorns Chinese dragons in mythology and modern-day cultural celebrations. Drivers and passengers will definitely feel like they’ve stepped into a fantasy world with a glittering interactive ambient lighting system in the cabin. The most notable feature though, although a little difficult to see in the provided images, is a graphical user interface (GUI) that merges the instrument cluster and the audio-visual display into the center of the dashboard. Operated by artificial intelligence (AI), the GUI displays useful information about the vehicle, such as various autonomous driving features, powertrain, and navigation.

Here’s hoping we get a better look at the Kia Futuron Concept here in the states. Share your thoughts about the new concept on Miami Lakes Kia social media.

Photo Source/Copyright: Kia Media