Over the last several months I’ve been especially glad that TTAC is relatively more free from the demands of the news cycle, as the doldrums of August has left us with little in the way of breaking news. Luckily TTAC is blessed with the kind of writers who can make even the most obscure story relevant and fascinating, and we’ve kept up our story cadence rolling even through the near media blackout of deep summer. But with just under a month left before the first and biggest auto show of the year, the Internationale Automobile Ausstellung in Frankfurt, the concepts and new models are starting to be rolled out, and the news cycle is chugging back to life. And one of the sparks that’s getting things moving again is this Kia rear-drive, four-door sports coupe concept.
Kia’s design boss Peter Schreyer tells his fellow Germans at Auto Motor und Sport that
In three to five years, we’re going to offer a sportscar. This study will open a new chapter for Kia.
And, according to Kia boss Hank Lee, that future sportscar will be a four-door coupe model, not unlike both this concept and Kia’s earlier Kee concept (shown at the 2007 IAA). This is an interesting decision, considering that we’d heard earlier that this forthcoming sports coupe would be a small, lightweight coupe, as Schreyer explained
We would have to aim to rival the Mazda MX-5 and Toyota’s new rear-driven coupe. The car would not need to be very fast or very powerful, but it should be compact, affordable and fun – a true sports car.
We’ll continue to watch this program, as between this, Toyota’s FT-86/FR-S and the rumored Nissan Silvia sports coupe, we’re looking at something of a renaissance for small, affordable, rear-drive sports coupes. In the meantime, the next big Kia announcement, also be at the IAA, will be a production version of Kia’s Genesis-platform luxury flagship. With the silly season officially behind us, now more than ever, it’s time to be watching this space…