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Old 09-13-2011, 08:53 PM   #1
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Post Frankfurt 2011: Kia Unveils RWD Sport Concept

The folks at Kia are throwing their hats into the rear-wheel drive arena, unveiling the GT concept sports car on Tuesday.

This is a first for the company, who has traditionally made family-oriented sedans and sport utilities.

The story from AutoBlog:

Originally Posted by By Chris Paukert - AutoBlog, 9/13/11

GT Concept pushes Kia into the world of rear-wheel drive performance

For the most part, Kia has had to content itself with working class iron while it has watched its corporate sibling, Hyundai, spread its wings upmarket. With massive sales momentum and big upticks in everything from styling cohesion to consumer consideration, now might just be the right time for the Korean automaker to start its own push into the land of loftier price tags.

The Kia GT Concept just revealed at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show presages a new rear-wheel drive production platform, though we're guessing the final product won't look much like this coupe-like four-door. Motivated by a 3.3-liter turbocharged V6 giving 389 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque, power for GT is routed through an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

While the Kia GT has its share of interesting details (contrasting rocker panel swoosh, fender-mounted rearview camera stanchions, Aston Martin-like front canards etc.), we're still on the fence about what we think of the visuals.

The interior is somewhat less controversial, with beautiful organic forms, one-piece seats that are covered in different materials front and back, and a unique glass instrument panel. Check it all out in our high-res gallery and let us know what you think in Comments.
[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

I've been very impressed with the strides that Kia has made over the years and will be interested to see what comes of this concept. If they can produce a legitimate RWD, I see them as prime competition for some of the more moderately priced brands that are on the market.

However, this is still all contingent upon this concept being mass produced.

One thing that makes me curious is where the design aesthetics originated. The front end and contour lines look strikingly similar to the Nissan GT-R, save for what appears to be a longer chassis and frame. This is likely coincidental as I can also see the "Kia Resemblance," if you will.

What do you guys think? Good looking car or another "going-nowhere" concept?
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