Kia premieres 2nd-generation Soul EV and a host of updated variants at Geneva

For the upcoming Geneva Motor Show (Salon International de l’Automobile Geneva), Kia Motors is showcasing its all-new Soul EV, Stinger GT4 Concept, the enhanced Sportage and the updated Optima Hybrid.

Based on the second-generation Kia Soul, the Soul EV (electric vehicle) will premiere in Europe for the first time. At the same time, the new Soul EV will become the Korean marque’s first globally-sold EV when production starts in the second half of the year. This front-wheel drive electric car, with a high-capacity 27 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack and class-leading 200 Wh/kg battery energy density, derives power from an 81.4 kW electric motor which offers up to 285 Nm of torque. The compact EV is most suited to city commuters as it provides a driving range of around 200km on a single charge.

Second generation Kia Soul EV provides a glimpse of future Kia EVs

The Soul EV will benefit from accomplished ride and handling and a high level of refinement thanks to the car’s low center of gravity, revised platform and chassis and new materials designed to reduce noise, vibration and harshness.

To maximize the efficiency and potential range of the Soul EV, the vehicle features a number of energy-saving technologies that reduce load on the battery and increase maximum driving range. These include new advanced heating, ventilation and air-conditioning technologies, including a world-first ‘driver-only’ individual ventilation system, four-mode regenerative braking and a battery heating system.

The Soul EV will also be one of the most practical EVs on the market when it goes on sale in Europe later in 2014, as a result of minimal intrusion by the batteries into the cabin and cargo space. As with every other Kia variant, the Soul EV will guarantee owners with the peace of mind provided by Kia’s unique 7-Year, 150,000 km warranty.

Kia’s new hybrid technology will have an exhibit all by itself at Geneva, alongside production-ready low emissions and existing hybrid vehicles.

At the other end of the spectrum in Geneva, Kia brings out its GT4 stinger concept which had already made its global debut at January’s NAIAS (North American Motor show). The GT4 Stinger marks Kia’s first attempt at making Sports cars. This 2+2 driver-focused speedster is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline direct injection (T-GDI) four-cylinder engine that’s paired with a 6-speed manual transmission. The speedster is capable of achieving an output of 315 PS in preliminary figures. Pertinent highlights of the GT4 Stinger include independent double-wishbone suspensions, rear-wheel drive, a high-downforce carbon fiber front splitter and front-brake cooling vents.

Responding to customer feedback and developments in the increasingly-competitive European marketplace, Kia will also be showing the enhanced Kia Sportage at the Geneva show. The marque’s best-selling compact crossover receives small but significant upgrades to its modern exterior, as well as a refreshed interior design and new materials throughout the cabin. The 2014 Sportage also receives a range of new features to boost its appeal to buyers across the continent, including a new premium sound system, LED rear lamps, Kia’s FlexSteer system, heated steering wheel and a new 4.2-inch TFT LCD supervision cluster.

Kia Optima Hybrid makes European debut at 2014 Geneva Motor show

Also making its European debut, the upgraded Kia Optima Hybrid receives a number of changes. Visually, the Optima Hybrid features newly-designed front and rear bumpers, the front incorporating new LED fog lights and a revised design for Kia’s trademark ‘Tiger nose’ grille. The car’s profile is also improved with a new side-sill garnish and new 16- and 17-inch alloy wheel designs. With the upgraded version, customers will also be able to specify a new ‘White Package’ interior option, with white upholstery and gloss black cabin accents. Two new exterior paint finishes, Smoky Blue and Aluminium Silver, complete the visual changes.

The latest Optima Hybrid will also be fitted with a range of new features, including Kia’s third-generation regenerative braking system with greater braking feel and response, a new touchscreen interface specific to the Hybrid system and a new (optional) High Tech Pack (incorporating Lane Keep Assist, Blind Spot Detection and Smart Parking Assist systems). Production for the Optima hybrid is slated to start in Kia’s homeland in April.

Edited: Kia

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