Kia’s Soul concept will go into production next year.
A final version will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show this September displaying a step-change in the design direction of the South Korean brand.
The funky-looking model will remain close in looks to the concept seen in Geneva and the first Kia model to benefit from major input from Kia’s design director Peter Schreyer who joined the company from Audi.
The Soul was described by Kia Europe’s new chief executive Paul Willis as “segment breaking and mould breaking.”
He added: “It falls between the usual vehicle segments and will attract customers from smaller and larger models. It really shows off the ambition of Kia as a company which wants to be design-led.
“We are extremely excited about this car and looking forward to showing off the production version at Paris.”
The Soul will be built initially in South Korea.
Kia is also exhibiting two new ‘green-performance’ concept cars at Geneva. Called ‘eco_cee’d’ the concept cars are a development of the Kia pro_cee’d and the hugely popular cee’d five-door hatchback.
With the eco_cee’d models, Kia aims to achieve even better fuel consumption, with fewer emissions. Kia Motors has already confirmed that many of the technologies featured on the eco_cee’d concept cars will be progressively transferred to the Cee’d family of production models manufactured from December 2008.
Willis said: “The rapid transfer of green-performance eco_cee’d concept features into production versions of the cee’d, demonstrates Kia’s vision for the way ahead.”
The eco_cee’d technology has helped CO2 emissions to be reduced to104 g/km (down 17%) for the pro_cee’d and 106 g/km for the cee’d five-door.