Posts Tagged ‘kia futuron’
Kia Motors is one automaker that has always been on top of things. With a lineup that’s ever-growing with alternative fuel options, Kia Motors is set to become an all-electric automaker with concepts like the upcoming Kia Futuron. With the automaker placing a focus on purpose-built vehicles, sedans, and even micro electric vehicles, what comes next from Kia Motors is anyone’s guess. There is another part of technology from Kia Motors that’s also been slowly growing, and it gives consumers a whole new way to “connect” with their automobile. It’s the UVO infotainment system, and it has the attention of a renowned name in the automotive world – J.D. Power.
The Kia UVO infotainment system has come a long way. What started as a simple infotainment system that did most of the basic things – play music, navigate, make phone calls – the system eventually evolved. Although Kia Motors isn’t known to hold out on high tech for high-end trims, the new UVO system actually wasn’t made available on all trims of some of the new models. The new 2020 Kia Telluride and 2020 Kia Seltos offer the UVO but depending on the trim consumers may get a different version.
Kia Motors has reopened for business and is steadily starting manufacturing plants back up with safety measures in place. Optimistic about the rest of the year and years to come, Kia Motors has already begun to follow through with its Plan S Strategy, despite the shortcomings caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. When Kia announced the Plan S Strategy in January, the automaker had many large goals and a two-track plan – Electric Vehicles (EVs) and Purpose-Built Vehicles (PBVs). Already working towards PBVs with HMG, Kia Motors has announced two new upcoming EVs in the coming years to meet their goal of releasing 11 EVs by 2025, starting with a dedicated model in 2021. Whether it’s the Kia Futuron teased prior or another vehicle this new EV from Kia Motors has impressive specs.
When first teased, the Kia Futuron concept was one of the first EVs Kia Motors was to release. With a fresh design that also gave a futuristic feel to it with a geometric patchwork of matrix LED lighting, wide stance, and long wheelbase, it doesn’t look like your typical EV. Although a powertrain has yet to be released, we have already received some data on the capabilities of this EV, able to drive about 300 miles, give or take with regenerative braking, and can charge up in less than 20 minutes.
Kia Motors is always an automaker that we like hearing about. Always working on some new car technology or an interesting concept, Kia Motors is one brand that keeps moving forward. Most recently, the automaker confirmed that it will be launching two completely new electrified vehicles within the next few years, and both will definitely have a U.S. launch. That’s exciting, seeing as how vehicles manufactured overseas don’t always make it stateside. Moreover, one of the vehicles is a concept we’ve been keeping tabs on, and it seems that a driving range has finally been released, along with other details that demonstrate Kia Motors already working towards fulfilling their automaker’s “Plan S” Strategy.
The Plan S Strategy was launched earlier this year (2020), and highlighted multiple goals for Kia Motors over the next 5 years. A two-track plan, the focus is split between electric vehicles (EVs) and self-driving vehicle technology; and developing personal mobility solutions for consumers. The former begins with 11 new electric vehicles (EVs) by 2025, with the first dedicated EV to be launched in 2021. With the recent announcement from Kia Motors, we now know that two EVs are set for launch, with the first being a plug-in hybrid, possibly a crossover. The second is the Kia Futuron.
Kia Motors has a lot going for it in terms of its product lineup and developing technology. A part of the Hyundai Motors Group, whatever automotive endeavors Hyundai becomes involved in, Kia Motors is right there with them. It’s kind of like a competitive partnership, and it’s exciting, to say the least whenever a new project takes shape. MoceanLab, the home base for a self-driving carsharing pilot program, is the stepping stone to creating a personal mobility ecosystem. During the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show, we saw even more of this with the partnership with Uber to debut an air taxi service. The latest journey for these two automakers is a partnership with Canoo to co-develop an all-new all-electric platform for future electric vehicles.
Could it be the powertrain for the upcoming Kia Futuron concept? Set to be Kia Motors first all-electric vehicle – as in the first vehicle to be released as a stand-alone electric vehicle (EV) and didn’t have an internal combustion engine or hybrid or plug-in hybrid model before it. It’s part of Kia Motors statement to eventually become an all-electric automaker despite their testament to sports cars with GT trims. The Kia Futuron is just a concept for now, and if waiting for the right powertrain, this development with Canoo could be it.
Kia Motors “Plan S” is going to be something else. Announced in January 2020, the mid- to long-term strategy has one solid goal: establish a leadership position in the future automotive industry, encompassing electrification and mobility services, connectivity, and autonomy. There are already several objectives in place, and the automaker will be quickly shifting from a business system focused on internal combustion engine vehicles toward one centered on electric vehicles and customized mobility solutions. We’ve already seen glimpses of this with the Kia Futuron concept, their first all-electric vehicle that was preceded by an internal gas combustion model, and their upcoming customization app for Kia EV models.
Here’s the outline:
- Offer 11 EVs by 2025 and obtain 6.6% global EV market share
- Launch a dedicated EV model in 2021
- Make 25% of all sales from eco-friendly vehicles by the end of 2025
- Sell 500,000 EVs worldwide and 1 million eco-friendly vehicles by 2026
- Develop mobility products and services
And much more.
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.