2006 Chicago Auto Show Coverage by TCC Team (2/6/2006)
February 9, 2006
What you see is — almost — what you will get, hinted Kia’s U.S. CEO, Len Hunt, following the U.S. debut of the MultiS concept vehicle. Think of it as “what’s next in the crossover/utility space,” Hunt suggested, noting that the “S” stands for sporty, spacious and smart. Similar in size to the BMW X3 crossover/ute, the MultiS squeezes in three rows of seats and space for seven passengers, yet it’s smaller than the Korean carmaker’s current Sedona SUV. The concept boasts a variety of high-tech features, from the projector headlamps to the iPod port and USB connectors for linking cameras and other digital toys to an onboard computer. The production crossover will likely do away with that silicon technology, as well as the space-age taillamps and full-length glass roof panels, according to Kia sources. But the overall look is quite similar to the crossover now in final development. Kia has been on an aggressive product rollout lately, with six new products hitting market this year alone. Sales soared to a record 275,000 in 2005, and Hunt told TheCarConnection.com, “We expect to punch through 300,000” this year.
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