Kia Soulster Concept is under final assessment for production

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 7, 2012

There haven’t been any updates about the Kia Soul’ster Concept ever since it was first seen at the 2009 Detroit Motor Show, making many think that it had been axed. However, Kia mentioned it in a recent release, revealing that it is “currently under final assessment for production.” This was cited in Kia’s press release for the Track’ster concept, which will be unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show next week.

The original Soulster concept had the appearance of a modern Suzuki Sidekick with a chopped windscreen and a ground-breaking two-piece top that permits passengers to independently open up the front and rear roof.

This design also comes with striking material finishes like the anodized metal thick roll-bar, fender vents and skid-pad inserts. If the Soul’ster convertible crossover gets approved for production, it is expected to be offered with a 1.6L 4-cylinder that offers 138-hp and a more potent 2.0L that delivers 164-hp.

Kia Soulster has an attitude that incorporates lighting which shines with a beautiful amber glow under the headlamps. On the other hand, the side vents, the unique LED headlamps, the side-mirror turn signals, as well as the fog and tail lamps all incorporate blue shades.

Soulster’s energetic and distinctive appearance carries from its front to its rear, showcasing dual chrome exhaust as well as polished aluminum exhaust tips that feature carbon-fiber interior sleeves. It also has five-spoke aluminum alloy wheels, which measure 19 inches in diameter and which fit the car perfectly. Regardless of whether you are looking at the Kia Soulster’s front, back or side, you get an innovative perspective, which it got from the original Kia Soul.

Additionally, the Kia Soulster’s interior takes more progressive variations from the Soul, starting with its new 4-passenger seating design, which is a diversion from the Soul's 5-passenger seating, thus giving the Soulster spacious versatility ideal for long summer weekends. The car is also surprisingly flexible, being able to accommodate two passengers in the front and two more in the back. This is the ideal car for social outings like on the beach or anywhere outdoors with friends, thanks to its fold-flat seats combined with sufficient headroom. Its crank-up windows and dashboard-integrated audio speakers are key interior design elements, too.

Adding to the Soulster’s edgy design scheme are its non-floor-mounted cantilevered seats that appear suspended in space when you look at it from the side and therefore allow for increased legroom at the back. There are also storage compartments beneath each fold-flat rear seat, offering additional cargo space. Aside from the spacious cargo area, you can also find dual storage compartments in the rear as well as under the cargo hold area.

Kia Soulster has young buyers in mind as it offers a smooth, agile, and spirited ride. And just like the Soul, the Kia Soulster offers engine options, depending on the market's needs. There’s the 1.6-liter, 4-cylinder engine, which is paired with a 5-speed manual transmission and which delivers 120 hp.

Meanwhile, those who are looking for more power can opt for the 2-liter 4-cylinder engine available with either a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic transmission, delivering approximately 140 hp. Fuel economy for both of these engines is estimated at a minimum of 30 miles per gallon. Other markets might also opt for the 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine that produces 124 hp or for a 1.6-liter turbodiesel.

Topics: kia, concept, production

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