Kia UK CEO, Paul Philpott, has revealed plans for the company to build a pair of rear wheel drive models. Slated for 2020, the two models will be the brand's first rear wheel drive passenger cars developed in-house. According to Kia, the two rear-driven cars will be based on the GT and Stinger GT4 concepts.
The GT was unveiled during the 2011 Frankfurt Motor show which was then followed up by the smaller Novo concept in this year's Seoul Motor Show. Both cars feature Kia's current design language with the latter featuring a more “European” twist to its styling. Four years ago, Paul Philpott said that the GT is a car, “that says we’re ready to stretch the brand further,” The first in-house rear wheel drive sedan is set to become the marque's flagship sedan according to Philpott.
The Stinger GT4 on the other hand will be a compact coupe. It was shown in last year's Detroit Auto Show and, in Kia's words, “harks back to the days of affordable sports cars”. Designed in Kia's California design studio, the GT4 is aimed at compact, rear wheel drive sport cars such as the Toyota GT 86, Subaru BRZ and Mazda Miata. "Driving enjoyment was the number one priority in designing the GT4 Stinger. It's a 2+2 sports car that can turn heads as a daily driver while also being right at home on the track.”, said Tom Kearns, Chief Designer at Kia’s American design center.
Philpott says the two rear-driven models will be oriented towards the US market with Europe being secondary. The GT name will also eventually be their equivalent of Hyundai's performance arm, N-Performance. The GT and Stinger GT4 will serve as previews for the next generation Kia models which are due before the decade's end.
Source: AutoCar UK