Kia Motors Reveals More EV Plans

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A little over a year ago, Kia Motors made headlines when the automaker announced that it would soon become the world’s next all-electric automaker. In early 2020, Kia Motors released its “Plan S” strategy, during which time the plan was to release 11 new electric vehicles (EV) by 2025 and eventually become the world’s leading EV automaker with 500,000 EVS sold worldwide. Now with 2020 nearing its final months and auto manufacturers back to work, Kia Motors has revealed its future plans with another look at its global electric vehicle (EV) business strategy.

“Kia has sold more than 100,000 BEVs worldwide since the introduction of our first mass-produced BEV in 2011, the Kia Ray EV…Since then, we have started to introduce a range of new BEVs for global markets and announced plans to accelerate this process in the years ahead. By refocusing our business on electrification, we are aiming for BEVs to account for 25 percent of our total worldwide sales by 2029.” – Kia President and CEO Ho Sung Song

The plans are to expand the lineup with 11 new Battery-Electric Vehicles (BEV) by 2025, with Kia Motors aiming to hold the greatest EV sales with these 11 accounting for 20 percent of the brand’s total vehicle sales in advanced markets, including Korea, North America and Europe. At the same time, these 11 BEVs are mainly just concepts at the moment. The first seven dedicated BEVs still won’t launch until 2027, with the first of these mystery vehicles code-named “CV”. It will be the first official BEV to come from Kia Motors but there’s still so much unknown about it.

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Four Kia Motors Models Take Gold in Russia

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2020 still has some months to go before it’s finally over. We’re all waiting to see what 2021 will bring, but until then, there is still plenty of time for some good news to come out of this year. During the shutdown with the pandemic, there were still automotive publications collecting data and publishing study findings on some of the best vehicles out there, like the Kia Stinger and Kia Telluride during the 2020 J.D. Power APEAL Study, ranking high for Kia Motors. Well now we got more good news, this time coming from overseas. All the way in Motherland, Russia, the Car of the Year Russia awards named four Kia Motors vehicles as winners – the Kia Picanto, Ceed, Seltos, and Stinger.

“The Kia brand has grown in popularity in Russia for many years, and we are extremely proud to have won four awards in the annual Russian Car of the Year contest as a result…For Kia globally, Russia is one of our most important markets. We have worked hard to be the number one import brand with a 13 percent market share in Russia, and aim to continue our growth in the market in years to come. These four awards are extremely gratifying not only for Kia Motors Russia, but for Kia Motors globally.” – Ho-sung Song, President and CEO of Kia Motors Corporation

It may not sound like a big deal over here in the states. After all, we only know half of those vehicles, so what’s the big deal? Well, for one, the Car of the Year Russia awards is one of if not the most prestigious automotive award ceremony in the country. Going on for 20 years, 2020 had plenty of competition with over 300 models going for gold. Each car was judged by Russian citizens via an online vote over several months. One and a half million votes were counted for 2020 and the results were in for Kia.

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Hey Kid, Wanna Steal a Kia Sonet?

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Hey kid, you wanna steal a new Kia Sonet? No, seriously, you can – on a digital scale. Kia Motors is one automaker that has been finding new ways to connect to the younger generation filling up the demographic of prospective car buyers, and it’s a smart move. If there is any way to connect with younger folk, it’s pop culture. In early, Kia Motors became the official sponsor for the European League of Legends Championship Series and sponsored upcoming K-Pop band BLACPINK for their world tour (why not BabyMetal?), and continues to find ways to connect with those who are always connected, by offering the ability to purchase an electric vehicle (EV) charger right off of Amazon. So, how is Kia Motors connecting with us now? You can steal a Kia Sonet in Grand Theft Auto V.

Okay, so Grand Theft Auto V is a bit old, launched in 2013, but Rockstar Games is continuously re-releasing this open-world freedom, storytelling, mission-based game, and for the latest release, Kia Motors jumped in to offer consumers the chance to drive the Kia Sonet before they buy it – you just might have to steal it. That is the way most cars are acquired in a video game called “Grand Theft Auto”. With the Sonet currently being manufactured at Kia Motor’s facility at Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh, it may be some time before the global release of this beauty sets foot, or more so tire, on American soil.

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Kia Motors and HMG Collaborate with SK Innovation on EV Battery Recycling

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Kia Motors has been pretty busy in recent years, and although COVID-19 hit the auto industry hard, the automaker came back swinging. Alongside purpose-built vehicles, Kia Motors has also jumped into investments with Aurora Innovation, and started several joint ventures with EV startups, like CODE42.ai to revolutionize the way electric vehicles work today. Part of the Hyundai Motor Group, Kia Motors is always getting in on the ground floor of new ventures and benefits from the results, like the MoceanLab development, working on self-driving electric vehicle fleets as a new ride-hailing service. One problem automakers have faced since the dawn of electric vehicles (EVs) was the development and production of EV batteries and how they impact the ecosystem. The Hyundai Motor Group enters into a collaboration with SK Innovation Co. to design new forms of battery management service and battery reuse and recycling, as well as improve the image of EV batteries in the industry.

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New Ad Campaign Puts the Spotlight on the Kia K5

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We’re all excited about the new Kia K5, the renamed and new generation of the beloved Kia Optima. Getting a much more sports car-inspired look and new features, the Kia K5 is looking like the older sibling of the Kia Stinger after it received a mid-cycle refresh. Recently, Kia Motors showed off this bad boy with death-defying stunts, a live TV event known as the Triple Threat. Now, to push the envelope a little more, Kia Motors America (KMA) launches a creative broadcast campaign in partnership with network shows including NBCUniversal’s America’s Got Talent and the 72nd Emmy® Awards telecast to show off a new ad for the vehicle, “Turning the Lights On”.

“The Kia K5 is like nothing else in the category and we looked for high-profile partners to create a series of events and creative elements that showcase our most powerful midsize sedan ever…The partnerships with America’s Got Talent and the Emmys are a completely new direction for Kia and help bring live elements to a launch that has been decidedly different from the start.” – Russell Wager, director, marketing operations, Kia Motors America

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Autotrader Names Kia Soul as Perfect Car for Dog Lovers

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People love dogs, and why wouldn’t they? Man’s best friend, great for hunting and playing fetch, they always know when their owners are feeling down and need their furry friend to cheer them up. That’s why we have a day every year dedicated to dogs, and although it has come and gone (August 26), we can still appreciate them as much as always. Recently, well-known automotive name Autotrader posted a list for the “10 Best Cars for Dog Lovers” and wouldn’t you know that the 2020 Kia Soul was named on the list. This hatchback has always been hip and funky for the youth, and young people are always looking for reasons to travel with their dog, haying to leave them behind. Now, the Kia Soul is the official vehicle to get if looking to take your dog for a ride and get some fresh air.

“The Soul has been a longstanding success because its versatility accommodates many different lifestyles, and this Autotrader accolade reinforces there is a Soul for everyone, including dog owners…Whether you’re riding with your pup around town or packing the whole family up for a weekend road trip, the Soul is perfectly cut out for canines.” – Sean Yoon, President & CEO, Kia Motors America, Kia Motors North America

Just about everyone knows about Autotrader but in case the Coronavirus has you living under a rock, it’s the most recognized third-party car listings brand online. Always collecting and publishing new data on the automotive industry and new and old vehicles, in-market car shoppers can stay informed with Autotrader and get very important insight into the car shopping experience. If Autotrader puts a car on a list, it’s most likely a great choice! The “Best Cars for Dog Lovers” has been going on for seven years now, highlighting vehicles that offer the best features that every dog owner could need, although after-market accessories can always add a little more functionality.

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Kia Motors Debuts New Generation Kia Sedona Overseas

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Kia Motors is as busy as ever, we’re surely pleased. The new 2021 Kia Stonic, the mid-cycle refresh on the Kia Stinger, and the newest addition, the Kia Sonet, there’s a lot to love. Now there’s another new addition, except it’s more like a new generation of a vehicle sold overseas that we know by another name. Stateside, we know it as the Kia Sedona minivan, whereas in Korea, the automaker calls it the Carnival, and for 2021, the new Kia Carnival will go on sale in Korea this year, subsequently followed by international markets. We’re not sure if Kia Motors will follow the pattern of the Kia Optima and change the names, but we think the fourth-generation Kia Sedona (Carnival) might just make it here by 2022.

Sure, 2022 seems a bit far away, but good things take time. An automaker needs to make sure their vehicles are successful before producing all-new bodies for the U.S. and other countries that drive on the right side of the road and then the delivery costs to get them there. Like all automakers, Kia Motors is just teasing the new Kia Carnival minivan, and it’s looking pretty nice, inside and out.

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Kia Motors and Hyundai to Release Tech for Better Car Cabin Air Quality

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Necessity is the mother of invention. It’s an English-language proverb, but it rings true, and more so now than ever. In a post-pandemic world, whenever that will be, businesses everywhere are looking for new ways to thrive in a broken economy, and every industry is looking for ways to help healthcare officials. The Hyundai Motor Group, the umbrella automotive group that houses Kia Motors, has developed a new technology to help keep the air quality in the cabin of vehicles cleaner. This sounds very familiar, probably because many automakers are starting to look into ways to improve their vehicles for handling the pandemic, aside from social distancing which is difficult inside the cabin of most vehicles.

There are three bits of technology to take a look at. “After-Blow”, “Multi-Air Mode”, and “Fine Dust Indicator”. Each is made to improve the air and overall quality of the cabin. With viruses becoming airborne, keeping the air quality in private and enclosed spaces high is a huge concern. Hopefully mode car models will adopt this new technology while we keep chugging along.

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Details on the 2021 Kia Stinger Mid-Cycle Refresh

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When we first heard the Kia Stinger sports car was already getting a mid-cycle refresh, we were a little stunned. Thought to be the sports car of the decade, the Stinger was released in 2018, and not only does the Kia Stinger outperform the likes of the Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz CLS 550, but it’s also way more affordable. It was a very popular vehicle, winning many awards, and then kind of fell off the face of the world. We liked the Kia Stinger, loved it really, and we’re sure many others did, too. Maybe it was just missing a little something for the majority of the crowd, and Kia Motors looks to rectify that with a mid-cycle refresh, and we finally got all the details.

“The Stinger projects an air of elegance and comfort, and also great purpose, for long distance driving. The updated model builds on the svelte gran turismo design we introduced three years ago with modern flair and a subtle hint of aggression to enhance its on-road presence. The interior, too, has been enhanced, and the new design elements and technologies incorporated into the Stinger reconfirm its credentials as the consummate grand tourer.” – Karim Habib, Senior Vice President and Head of Kia Global Design

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2021 Kia Sonet Highlights

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We learned about the new 2021 Kia Sonet, another vehicle making a global release from Kia Motors. We’re pretty excited that the South Korean automaker is starting to make this move of sharing more new models with its international markets, especially here in the U.S. Kia Motors is no stranger when it comes to America – this automaker competes with the big boys, and the more cool concepts they bring our way, the better. Following quickly on the heels of two new additions, the 2020 Kia Telluride SUV and 2020 Kia Seltos Compact SUV, the 2021 Kia Sonet joins the family, another compact SUV but the baby of the family. Check out all of the highlights!

Performance

Kia Motors is definitely changing it up with the powertrain when it comes to the Kia Sonet. There are just so many options – three engines, five transmissions, and the Sonet comes with Kia Motors new Smartstream six-speed intelligent manual transmission (iMT). There are two gasoline engines, the versatile Smartstream 1.2-liter four-cylinder and a 1.0 Turbocharged engine with Gasoline Direct Injection. For those looking for a cleaner burn, there’s also a diesel option, the efficient 1.5-liter CRDi diesel engine. Between these three engines, consumers may have the option for a five- or six-speed manual transmission, an intuitive seven-speed DCT, a six-speed automatic, or Kia’s revolutionary new six-speed Smartstream iMT. If that doesn’t sound like enough personalization, the Sonet also offers Multi-Drive and Traction Modes for added convenience, driver-confidence, and safety.

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