Saturday, April 25, 2015

KIA Roadshow 2015 Concludes Successfully

Al Majid Motors Co., the sole distributor for KIA cars in the UAE, has concluded its highly-acclaimed UAE KIA Roadshow for 2015. During its eight-week run, the popular automotive tour brought Kia’s range of SUVs, compact cars and family sedans to eight major shopping malls and prime locations in Fujairah, Sharjah, Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah and Al Ain.

“This year’s KIA Roadshow proved to be yet another great success, having attracted more than 80,000 visitors keen to view the Kia’s diverse range of passenger vehicles. Such was the demand during the two-month itinerary that we reached full occupancy for booked test drives,” said Mohammed Khader, President, Al Majid Motors - KIA.

“Each year, Al Majid Motors strives to make the KIA Roadshow bigger and better to reflect the excitement around new KIA models and each year this is reciprocated with increased levels of interest from the region’s car lovers who recognise the brand’s quality and value for money,” he added.

The KIA Roadshow 2015 commenced at Lulu Mall, Fujairah on February 13th and finished at Manar Mall, Ras Al Khaimah on April 3rd. During the event, Al Majid Motors Co. unveiled the all-new KIA Grand Carnival CUV (Crossover Utility Vehicle), which formed a major attraction throughout the tour.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Kia Rio 1.4 CRDi 4 EcoDynamics 5-Door

The switch from bargain basement to upmarket quality has been an agreeable one for Korean car maker Kia.

Its small car contender the Rio may have been the model that propelled the brand up the path to UK recognition, but it certainly isn't one for standing still.

A philosophy of offering value-conscious buyers lots of car for their cash remains, but in response to customer clamour you can now lay your hands on a car kitted out like a prestige hatch - which in truth is exactly what the top grade Rio has become.

Four, or more precisely 4, is the magic number that is attracting buyers keen on downsizing without downgrading.

Flagship trim Rio 4 buyers now have the option of a 107bhp 1.4-litre petrol engine or the tested 89bhp 1.4 CRDi turbodiesel, both with six-speed manual transmission and stop/start.

Kit like full leather upholstery, a powered tilt/slide sunroof, heated steering wheel and smart key are all part of the package.

What you get with the Kia is a fresh, modern car you can really enjoy taking for a drive - whether that be a potter round town or a dash down the motorway.

At present there are 24 derivatives in both three and five-door style with prices from $10,095, which represents proper value for money, up to $17,445.

And while there's a coupe-like roofline, head, leg and shoulder room aren't compromised though it can be tight in the back if the front seats need to be slid fully back.

Stowage for bottles and cans is everywhere, while you also get an iPod/USB connection, durable seats and upholstery - important for the re-sale market further down the line - 60/40 split-fold rear seats and a deep boot.

All diesels come with Kia's EcoDynamics suite of measures like low rolling resistance tyres, Intelligent Stop and Go, an accelerator kickdown switch and gearshift indicator.

It all contributes to low CO2 emissions of 105g/km and an official average fuel figure of 70.6 miles, though it has to be said my own mainly urban return was 47.3mpg.

What's certain is that this is a well-refined car of balance, poise and comfort. It also has some decent punch once up to speed if not any great acceleration.

Fast Facts

Kia Rio 1.4 CRDi 4 EcoDynamics 5-door

Price: $17,445

Mechanical: 89bhp, 1,396cc, 4-cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 106mph

0-62mph: 12.6 seconds

Combined MPG: 70.6

Insurance Group: 7

C02 emissions: 105g/km

Bik rating: 17%

Warranty: 7yrs/100,000 miles

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

2015 Kia Sedona Named To Ward's 10 Best Interiors List

Kia Motors America's (KMA) all-new 2015 Sedona has earned a spot on the Ward's 10 Best Interiors list.  The Sedona was recognized by the editors for its impressive interior style, comfort, and overall execution, including the available second-row "First-Class" lounge seating.

"The all-new Sedona completes Kia's design-led transformation under the direction of chief design officer Peter Schreyer.  It combines CUV styling, inside and out, with exceptional quality and offers unique interior features," said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, KMA.  "This is the second-consecutive year that Kia has earned a spot on the Ward's 10 Best Interiors list, following last year's inclusion of the ultra-popular Soul.  This award is a testament to Kia's continued commitment to world-class quality and top-notch design that is as beautiful as it is functional."

Starting at $25,9001, the completely transformed Sedona comes in seven- and eight-passenger seating configurations and offers available Nappa leather trimmed seating surfaces.  Exclusive Slide-N-Stow second-row seats slide and fold upright for enhanced cargo hauling without the hassle of removing heavy seats.  Sedona's front center console is unique to the segment and allows for generous storage space between the front seats, while the large dual glove box offers a cooled lower storage area for convenience.

"Minivans may not be as popular as they used to be, but the all-new Kia Sedona gives us reason to think this segment is in store for a resurgence," said Tom Murphy, executive editor, WardsAuto World magazine.  "Kia takes stylistic chances with the Sedona interior.  Sedona is unique in its interior design with two-tone leather set off with white piping and orange contrast stitching. The van's comfortable and spacious, with way-cool second-row lounge seats with footrests.  It's also flexible, with third-row seats that fold into the floor. Finally, a minivan that is truly cool!"

About the 2015 Sedona

Available in L, LX, EX, SX and SX Limited (SXL) trims and a choice of seven-passenger or eight-passenger seating configurations, the 2015 Sedona has something for everyone.  The Sedona comes standard with Kia's proven 3.3-liter V6 engine, which puts out 276 horsepower and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission routed to the front wheels.  The Sedona sets itself apart in the segment as its wide stance exudes a modern, CUV-like appearance and cab-forward design.  Sedona offers a wide array of available driver-aid technology including Surround View Monitor2, Smart Cruise Control2, Blind Spot Detection2 and Lane Departure Warning2.  Inside the spacious cabin, Sedona combines generous use of soft-touch materials, premium amenities such as "First Class" lounge seating, and Kia's latest UVO3 infotainment and telematics system.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Kia Put Their Heart and Soul Into New Car

The boxy Soul was the model that gave Kia, er, soul.

Until the funky family car arrived in 2009, the Koreans had simply churned out the normal hatchbacks, SUVs and MPVs.

It doesn’t seem long ago that Kia cars were just cheap and nasty, such as the Pride of the late 90s.

But they have made huge strides in recent years and that perhaps started with the funky and modern Soul.

I was one of the first UK journalists to drive the Soul in Korea six years ago and now I’ve had a drive of the most recent model in Scotland – and it’s better than ever.

The Soul proved Kia had a fun, dynamic edge and were not afraid to take risks. It remains a big player in their range and one of the most unusual models on UK roads.

It was also the only new car Kia released last year – yet the firm ended 2014 with yet another record performance in the car market – delivering 77,525 cars to customers during the year.

It also cemented the UK as Kia’s biggest-selling market in Europe.

Now the Koreans are in product over-drive. This year has already seen striking new versions of the Rio, Venga, Picanto and Sorento – there’s also a fresh Cee’d hatchback towards the latter end of 2015.

Next year will also see a new Sportage and cracking new Optima saloon and estate, which have been unveiled recently in New York and Geneva.

Kia sold a record 350,000 in Europe last year, and their top Euro boss Michael Cole told me they are now aiming for 500,000 by 2020. With style in abundance, and under the guidance of outstanding designer Peter Schreyer, you wouldn’t bet against them achieving that. But the Soul remains their quirkiest star, with prices starting at £12,800.

Kia have sensibly retained the distinctive styling but tweaked it just enough to make it fresh and more grown-up.

It gets bigger headlights with LED running lights, along with an even deeper, lower grille in black mesh.

New tall, upright, LED “halo” tail lights wrap around the rear to give it a more dynamic look.

Kia are offering far more personalisation, with three roof colours to go with 11 vibrant exterior hues, which suits the Soul’s quirky character.

One of the big failings of the original Soul was that it was a bit soulless to drive. Kia have addressed that with an all-new body chassis. It’s now a tad more fun to drive on A and B roads, with keener steering.

The ride is more refined and Kia have worked hard to improve interior noise levels with extra soundproofing. Although the 1.6-litre diesel I tested still felt a little gruff under hard acceleration, it’s quiet enough as soon as you are on the move.

Designers have stepped up the quality – from plastics with a softer touch to neat mock-aluminium trim and yellow stitching on the seats and steering wheel.

The new Soul is slightly bigger, with more leg and shoulder room for driver and passengers, as well as boot space increased to easily cope with three large suitcases.

I really love this foxy boxy machine. It’s got plenty of character and Soul.

Monday, April 20, 2015

2016 Kia Sorento 2.0-Liter Turbo Quick Take

Not that long ago a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine was reserved for compact cars. It's easy to see why. A smaller engine meant smaller power and thus meant it was only fit for a smaller car, lest it get overwhelmed trying to move more metal.

Nowadays, this isn't the case. Just as V6 engines displaced many V8s, 4-cylinder powerplants are supplanting or supplementing 6-cylinder engines in today's models. Thanks to improvements in technology, engineering and efficiency, these smaller engines are powering bigger vehicles, and doing so quite well.

New Sorento, new engine

One of the latest examples of this is the 2016 Kia Sorento. With this all-new version of Kia's midsize crossover SUV comes an all-new engine option: a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder. Packing 240 horsepower and earning up to 27 mpg on the highway in front-wheel-drive (FWD) form, this innovative powerplant splits the difference between the Kia's naturally aspirated 4-cylinder and topline V6 engines. Like those other engines, this one is can be linked to an all-wheel-drive (AWD) system that even offers a locking center differential for better traction at low speeds on rough and rugged roads. The more-with-less theme continues in the towing department. The Sorento's new 2.0-liter engine is rated to pull up to 3,500 pounds in both FWD and AWD form. That matches the tow rating of a front-drive V6 Sorento, though it still can't match the 5,000-pound towing ability of an AWD V6 Sorento. (The base 4-cylinder Sorento's tow rating, by comparison, maxes out at 2,000 pounds.)

So how's it drive?

Numbers are one thing, real-world driving another. And the news is good. Exceptionally good, in fact. The turbocharged Kia Sorento is surprisingly potent, and in these hands felt even more powerful than its impressive 240-horsepower figure would indicate. Among this Sorento's X-factors are its torque rating -- 260 lb-ft that is actually 8 more than the V6 -- and its fine turbocharging technology that is void of lag. Turbo lag is an oft-griped trait of many such engines. It is characterized by a lapse in action between when you press the accelerator and the turbo spools up to power the vehicle forward. It's no fun when you're trying to get around that slow-moving vehicle on a 2-lane road and need power like, now.

Thankfully that isn't the case with Kia's 2.0-liter turbo. It delivers thrust quickly and smoothly, similar to a V6. In fact, the engine is so good that I popped the hood just to confirm I wasn't actually driving a V6 Sorento.

One more thing to know

As the middle child in the Sorento's engine lineup, this new turbo-4 makes is a fine choice that delivers the satisfaction of a V6, the potential to save some fuel and, with a starting cost of around $32,000, a slightly lower price than a comparable V6 trim level. One caveat, though: this turbocharged Sorento is only offered in 2-row, 5-passenger form. If you want seating for more, you'll have to pick another engine. A 7-passenger/3-row setup is optional on Sorentos with the base, 185-horsepower 4-cylinder and standard with the 290-horsepower 3.3-liter V6.   

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Kia's Optima Hybrid Makes An Impact

Muskoka Kia in Bracebridge is committed to environmental responsibility.  We are proud of the success of the 2015 Kia Optima Hybrid, a mid-size sedan which appeals to both professionals and families.  If you're looking for a high impact hybrid car, take a Optima Hybrid for a test drive.  It may be the hybrid car you've been waiting for.  Muskoka Kia invites you to visit our showroom at 21 Robert Dollar Drive in Bracebridge.

The 2015 Kia Optima Hybrid is a thrill for your eyes and your spirit.  One look and you're hooked!  This car tells people you've arrived.  If you're interested in lowering the impact of your driving on the environment, a hybrid car is the way to go.  Filled with lots of great features, you can feel good about helping the environment while travelling in luxury. 

Many Canadians are excited to go green.  It's the right thing to do for our communities and our planet.  Kia understands your passion. Our engineers are eager to come up with new ways to make our vehicles more efficient.  Gas guzzlers are a thing of the past.  We are proud to make cars that fit your needs while reducing our environmental footprint.

Starting with the 2015 model year, Natural Resources Canada in partnership with  automotive manufacturers, have introduced a new testing procedure that will result in higher fuel consumption ratings that are more representative of everyday driving. Kia Canada is one of the first automotive manufacturers to implement the new testing practice and would like you to fully understand the difference. This new procedure includes three additional test cycles which measure air conditioner usage, cold temperature operation, and higher speeds with more rapid acceleration and braking. Visit this link to learn more about fuel efficiency ratings.