Kia is gearing up for next week’s Geneva Motor Show, preparing to unveil new models, a new concept and a new engine at the event.
The motor show marks the first official appearance of the cee’d GT Line for the European market, with sales expected to commence by the fourth quarter of this year.
That means buyers in Europe can now opt for the GT treatment on the three- and five-door cee’d body-styles, along with the cee’d Sportswagon.
Features include 17-inch alloy wheels, twin exhaust tips and GT Line logos in the cabin, along with piano back and leather highlights throughout the interior.
Two engines are available for the cee’d GT Line, including an upgraded version of the model’s existing 1.6 litre diesel unit producing 98kW (up 4kW) and 285Nm (up 20Nm).
The other engine is Kia’s all-new three-cylinder 1.0 litre turbocharged T-GDI petrol unit producing 88kW and 172Nm, available only with a six-speed manual transmission.
Diesel GT Line buyers can have the same six-speed manual gearbox or opt instead for another new drivetrain component from the Korean carmaker - its seven-speed DCT dual-clutch automatic transmission, which first broke ground at the same motor show last year.
Expect to see the seven-speed DCT appearing in more models soon, which Kia says should bring a 3-5 percent improvement in acceleration and a 5-7 percent improvement in efficiency.
Kia adds that we will also see the 1.0 litre engine fitted to other models soon, to be joined in the range by other “downsized” powerplants.
Kia’s Picanto city car will also be on show in Geneva, having received an upgrade for 2015.
Front and rear bumpers have been redesigned for the new year, bringing the model slightly closer to the look of the updated Rio light hatch, while the 14-inch alloy wheels, chrome interior highlights and a seven-inch display screen are also new.
While the updated Picanto goes on sale ‘globally’ in the next few months, the Australian market won’t be seeing it just yet.
That may change, however, with Kia’s local Senior Product Manager, Jeff Shafer, telling TMR recently that the Picanto is “a product we want to introduce”.
The well-received Sportspace wagon is Kia’s big ticket concept for the event (that we know of), and watch for confirmation that the concept previews a new Optima Wagon; set for production later this year.
Kia says the concept was “created for long distance driving”, and is designed for “fast and efficient travel, with maximum comfort and minimal stress”.
The Sportspace features a full-length panoramic sunroof, a configurable digital display for the driver and steel rollers in the cargo area.
A suitable accompaniment for a future production version of the Sportspace might be a second concept from Kia set to appear in Geneva.
The carmaker has released a single teaser image of the second concept; an electric bicycle called the K-velo.
Tracing back to the carmaker’s roots as a bicycle-builder, the K-velo powers the rear wheel with a 250 watt motor developed in conjunction with Bosch.
Using a 36 volt, 10 amp lithium-ion battery, Kia says the concept’s City version can travel up to 70km on a charge while a Mountain Trek model is good for around 50km.
When discharged, the battery pack detaches from the bike and can be recharged using an everyday household power outlet in around four hours.
Both City and MTB versions weigh around 20kg and have a top speed of 25km/h. The City gets 28-inch wheels and road tyres, while the MTB wears 27.5-inch wheels and off-road rubber.
Stay tuned to TMR for more news from the Geneva Motor Show.