Kia setting up Mazda MX-5 rival, all-wheel-drive Soul
26 March 2011
Kia is seriously considering adding a two-seat droptop along the lines of Mazda's MX-5 to its portfolio. European CEO Paul Philpott has stated that the automaker will expand and enhance its volume offerings during 2011 and 2012, but that a roadster could be in the cards shortly thereafter.
Philpott is not alone in his desires for a Kia sports car. Paul Schreyer, Kia's Chief Designer, believes that the Korean automaker needs a truly sporty vehicle in the line-up.
UK-based magazine Auto Express has put together a rendering of such a vehicle, and it clearly draws heavily from the Pontiac Solstice. However, it should be noted that the idea of a sports car in the lineup is not a totally foreign concept. From 1995 through 1999, Kia held licensing rights to the Lotus Elan and produced the Kia Elan for the Korean Market.
Kia is also reportedly working on a small, all-wheel-drive vehicle to slot below the Sportage. The Soul is due for a revamp within the next two years, so it makes sense that the funky hatchback could get all-wheel drive as part of its overhaul.