Aside from the new 2014 Kia Soul that was recently spied, the automaker is also developing a Soul convertible variant and a sporty hatchback model that will compete with the Volkswagen Golf GTI. When Soon-Nam Lee, Kia’s overseas marketing director, was recently interviewed, he said that the company is preparing turbocharged engines and is in the process of tuning suspension as well as readying a rival to the Golf GTI. Kia’s latest models were tremendously improved over their predecessors. It is currently developing a hot hatch based on the next-generation Kia Cee’d, which will make its debut next fall. It’s believed that it will be powered by the same 2.0-liter turbocharged powerplant used in the Optima sporty hatch. In the sedan, the turbocharged Theta II engine delivers 274-hp and 269 lb-ft of torque. It would have been exciting if this engine could be fitted in a lighter hatchback but the automaker will probably detune it. Soon-Nam also mentioned convertibles and their popularity in Europe. He confirmed that there is a plan to present a Soul-based convertible intended for 2014.
Gallery: 2012 Kia Rio