On March 5, Kia Motors Europe will unveil its new all-electric concept car at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show. Designed at Kia’s European design centre in Frankfurt, the concept is a visual embodiment of the company’s desire to move forward in the world of electrification.
“Automotive design is about capturing the heart and making it beat that bit faster for that bit longer – and we believe that there’s absolutely no reason why that should change simply because the car is electric,” says Gregory Guillaume, vice-president of Design for Kia Motors Europe.
“We imagined designing an all-electric car that not only answered consumer concerns around range, performance, recharging networks and driving dynamism, but one that also gave you goose bumps when you looked at it, and made the hairs on the back of your neck stand up when you drove it,” explains Guillaume. “That’s why our all-electric concept is designed to not only get your pulse racing, but to also signpost our holistic and emotional approach to electrification.”
Guillaume adds: “When they talk about their electric cars, many carmakers promote the same empirical data-driven messages as they do with their internal combustion engined cars, such as range, economy and performance criteria.”
“Kia prides itself on its power to surprise, which is why we wanted to move away from the rational and focus on the emotional, and embrace a warmer and more human approach to electrification. After all, electricity is found within every atom – it’s the energy that flows within us and around us on our planet. Harnessing its potential has propelled us from one innovation to the next,” says Guillaume.
Kia’s first full-electric four-door car
This concept is the company’s first pure electric four-door passenger car. Intentionally designed to not sit within the industry’s predefined vehicle categories, it coherently draws together elements of a muscular SUV, a sleek and athletic family sedan and a versatile and spacious crossover.
Reinterpreting Kia’s iconic ‘tiger nose’ grille, the concept features a bold new illuminated ‘tiger mask’ that encircles the headlamp units to create a distinctive and recognisable lighting motif. A single sheet of glass is used for both the windscreen and roof, flowing from the base of the A-pillar and over the cabin to create a vast sky-window, before tapering into a double-bubble over the rear passenger compartment. The rakishness of the car’s high shoulders and narrow glasshouse is further enhanced by an illustrated dynamic streak that draws the eye from the A-pillar to the C-pillar.
Guillaume and his team fully exploited the chassis architecture of the powertrain’s all-electric layout to maximise cabin space and create an airy and spacious interior. In a humorous riposte to the industry’s current obsession with ever increasing dashboard screens, the concept features 21 individual ultra high-resolution screens. These curve their synchronised way across the top of the dashboard in a layout that’s at the same time both casual and coordinated.