The world of automobiles is about to get turned on its ear when the Kia fastback concept is unveiledat the Frankfurt auto show on September 12. The trend in car design today is to provide the convenience of a hatchback and the utility of a crossover all wrapped in a body that exudes speed and power. The car, which was designed at Kia’s European studio in Frankfurt, does all that and more.
Cars with long hoods and curvaceous cabins fire the imagination and stoke the emotions. The Bugatti Atlantic coupe may have been the first (we will leave the purists to argue over that). Certainly the iconic Mercedes 300 SL coupe qualifies as a head turner. No less a personage than Enzo Ferrari called the Jaguar XK-E coupe the most beautiful production car ever made. General Motors and Ford have sold millions of fastback Mustangs and Camaros. The latest Mazda Vision concept pays homage to the theme, although sadly it is unlikely to ever see production.
The Kia fastback concept takes all that history, brings it forward, and uses if to make a bold design statement that hits the sweet spot of what car buyers crave today. Few details are available in advance of the Frankfurt show but it appears the car will be part of the C’eed model lineup. Similar to the Elantra sold in North America, the C’eed is a Europe specific car built in Zilina, Slovakia.
“The extended hot hatch styling retains the athleticism of the current Pro_cee’d model, while combining its striking visual presence with a dash of real-world versatility,” Kia said in a statement. “Reworked and reimagined for a new generation of driver, it puts forward a bold vision for a potential member of the next-generation Cee’d family.”
The concept is such a departure from anything else in the market in the price range Kia caters to, it may be sold separately. “We don’t make concept cars for no good reason,” a Kia source told Automotive News Europe. “It’s up for very serious consideration as a standalone model.”
What sort of powertrain the Kia fastback concept will have when and if it goes into production is a matter of conjecture at the moment. Norway’s ABC Hyneter speculates it may be available as a plug-in hybrid, which would put it in direct competition with the Kia Niro PHEV. The C’eed models are not sold in North America, which suggests the concept, whatever its production equivalent is called, won’t be either. Still, that doesn’t mean the styling elements that make the Kia fastback concept so appealing won’t find their way into other Kia offerings in the future.
Hat tip to Leif Hansen for sending us the link to the ABC Nyheter story.