Kia has just introduced the Soluto over in Mindanao (Cagayan de Oro to be exact), and even showed their first four customers for the subcompact sedan. In a bid to fully overhaul their range, new president Manny Aligada said that there will be three more surprises in store for Kia Philippines.
For their next model, Aligada dropped a couple of hints as to what it could be.
1. It’s a popular model abroad
2. It starts with the letter S
3. It will make its debut at the 2019 Manila International Auto Show
The third surprise will debut by the third quarter of 2019 although Aligada didn’t mention the fourth model just yet. Looking at Kia’s current worldwide range however, there are three candidates. These are Soul, Stonic, and Stinger.
If one were to be sensible, it is possible that they will bring in a crossover. Given that the subcompact crossover has been raking sales for other automakers, bringing the the Stonic would be the most logical and practical move. With Kia Philippines only having two crossovers in their range, adding another one would greatly help the local lineup.
The Stonic is a subcompact or B-segment crossover. Launched mid-2017, it’s up against the likes of the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3, Suzuki Vitara, and Toyota C-HR. That particular class is popular abroad, which means the first clue provided by Aladiga fits the bill. That, and Stonic starts with the letter S. It’s also worth pointing out that the Stonic was recently launched in neighboring Singapore, which could be an indication of it’s arrival here.
But what if that’s what Kia Philippines wants us to think? If they’re showing off something big in MIAS, the sporty Stinger should make quite the impact. It too has become a popular name abroad which fits the bill for Aligada’s first clue. While the Stinger doesn’t exactly have a lot of competitors both here and abroad, it will certainly be a big surprise if it makes its debut here.
And then there’s the Soul. Again, it’s a popular model abroad and (to state the obvious) also starts with the letter S. It’s a crossover too which makes it a logical and practical choice to bring in here as well. However, having both the Soul and Stonic here would mean Kia Philippines would have two subcompact crossovers here. Then again, having a lot of crossovers in the local lineup would be better, right?
For now, it’s all speculation but one thing is for sure: Kia Philippines is determined to see more of their cars in our garages.