Yet another automaker has stepped forward with a teaser pic of its upcoming concept car slated for September’s Frankfurt Motor Show. This time, it’s Kia, the Korean brand that has perhaps taken Europe by storm faster than it grew in the U.S. The reason for that is clear: Europe’s recession is about as deep as ours was at its height in 2009, and people are shopping for big-car features at little-car prices. That’s a place where Kia has always excelled.
The new car is a B-segment subcompact, which would make it about the size of the current Kia Rio. While Kia has provided sparse details of its upcoming concept, the company says it will be stylish and tenacious for the urban environment, especially tailored for Europe.
It follows on the heels of the Kia Provo concept, which debuted at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show in March and the Kia Cub, another small hatchback concept that debuted at the Seoul Motor Show around a month later. All three are around the same size and represent different ways to solve the same problem in Kia’s lineup.
While the Kia Rio is outselling its predecessor at higher transaction prices, it’s a vehicle that was designed in Korea for world consumption. So far with the Provo, Cub, and this yet-unnamed concept, Kia has shown that it’s willing to let its European design studios get in on the action, too. As it is, the new 2014 Kia Forte was primarily designed in Kia’s U.S. studios and sees duty in North America and Asia. In Europe, Kia has a compact hatchback called the Cee’d that shares plenty under the sheetmetal but is a completely different vehicle for a unique audience.
So is this upcoming concept headed for production?
“Although there are no current plans for production the vehicle’s unveiling in Frankfurt will be used to gauge potential customer response for future showroom models,” Kia says in a statement. Look for this upcoming concept to land in Frankfurt on September 10 with plenty of details to follow.