New Magentis will be called K5 or Optima in the UK
1 April 2010

The all-new Kia Magentis has been unveiled at the New York motor show - although it won't be called the Magentis when it arrives in the UK this time next year.

Kia is currently debating what to call the car, but has ruled out keeping the Magentis name. Company insiders are debating between calling it the K5, as it is known in Korea, and the Optima, as it is known as in the US.

See the Kia Magentis pics

A Kia source has also said an estate version of the car will be built. Asked about this, chief designer chief designer Peter Schreyer said: "I would love to do a station wagon and coupe version of the car. The station wagon would only really work for Europe but the coupe would work in the US. There are no firm plans though."

The Kia source also told Autocar that the car encompasses everything it wanted to achieve with its future design under Schreyer and all new Kias were likely to feature styling cues taken from the Magentis.

The Magentis is longer, wider and lower than the model it replaces and sits on a longer wheelbase than the outgoing car. This has significantly increased both cabin and luggage space.

Autocar understands that the car will feature Kia’s next generation of petrol and diesel engines. The big-seller should be the 2.0-litre diesel taken from the Sportage.

A 2.0-litre petrol engine will be the staple of the petrol range, although Kia could introduce smaller-capacity petrol engines, should there be sufficient demand.

Kia concedes that the Magentis is never likely to be a major seller in Europe, but believes the large saloon segment is one in which it must compete, as a volume manufacturer.

But the real demand for the car will come from the US and domestic markets, where its much improved styling and dynamics should hold appeal for buyers.

Schreyer also revealed that styling differences between Kia and Hyundai models competing in the same markets will begin to be more marked.

"They're already there but will will see more and more differences between Hyundai and Kia in the future as we develop Kia as a design led and sporty brand," he said. "Designing a sports car is still an ambition of mine, but we'll have to wait and see what happens."

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Comments
11

31 March 2010

As long as it's reasonably cheap, rear-wheel-drive and based on the Hyundai Genesis platform, it ought to sell. They've got the platform and Kia is the new Skoda in terms of huge brand turnarounds, so I reckon they really could go after a slice of the premium car market. If it's front-wheel-drive, it's had it. I'll say this, though, the big Cadenza/K7 looks good (if generic). If they can pull off the same trick again, the K5 ought to be a looker.

31 March 2010

We are beginning to see the excellent results of Kia having ex-Audi man Peter Schreyer as their top designer.

31 March 2010

I think this is a smart move to disassociate this car form the Magentis, it's a bit of a crummy name anyway. Model numbering is the safest bet.

1 April 2010

[quote Rover P6 3500S]As long as it's reasonably cheap, rear-wheel-drive and based on the Hyundai Genesis platform, it ought to sell.[/quote] It's FWD and shares the platform with the new Hyundai Sonata. Mainstream saloon cars that it will compete with are all FWD (only some of the "premium" ones are RWD) and the Genesis platform would be far too large. It looks decent enough to me, nothing overly striking or new, but definitely continuing the general improvement from kia/hyundai.

1 April 2010

It must be nice for a designer to start with essentially a clean sheet of paper rather than being constrained by the 1001 design cues that underline the marque identity of most European manufacturers, especially at the prestige end of the market. It's a nice looking machine.

1 April 2010

Those Wing Mirrors look like they came from a Scirroco or New Golf very similar design

1 April 2010

[quote theonlydt][quote Rover P6 3500S]As long as it's reasonably cheap, rear-wheel-drive and based on the Hyundai Genesis platform, it ought to sell.[/quote] It's FWD and shares the platform with the new Hyundai Sonata. Mainstream saloon cars that it will compete with are all FWD (only some of the "premium" ones are RWD) and the Genesis platform would be far too large. It looks decent enough to me, nothing overly striking or new, but definitely continuing the general improvement from kia/hyundai.[/quote]

Genesis saloon platform might be too big, what about that of the Genesis coupé? It's certainly shorter, if not narrower. Anyway, front-wheel-drive will be the kiss of death if they want to be seen to be moving upmarket. They at least need a torque-sensing rear-biased AWD system like that of the Nissan Skyline.

1 April 2010

[quote Rover P6 3500S]Anyway, front-wheel-drive will be the kiss of death if they want to be seen to be moving upmarket. They at least need a torque-sensing rear-biased AWD system like that of the Nissan Skyline.[/quote] They definitely do not need RWD for this model. This is designed to compete directly with Accords, Camrys, Fusion, Malibu etc in the NA market. Less so to take on the Mondeo/Insignia group in the EU market. Now, what do ALL of those models have in common? FWD. RWD would have packaging and cost implications that would force the car to be too expensive compared to what people are willing to pay. Now, even if they're trying to move towards competing with something like Buick in the NA market the competitor would be the Regal which is just a rebadged FWD Insignia. Maybe they really push the boat out and go after Audi and the A4? FWD... What you're suggesting with a torque sensing AWD system from the skyline is a system from a car costing about $100,000 in the NA market for a car that will have an entry point of just over $22,000 probably. Kia have produced a decent looking car that will probably handle reasonably well, have competitive powertrain options, holds its value and make the company money. Basing it on the Genesis platform would price the car out of the market, losing Kia money. It's business, get used to it.

2 April 2010

[quote theonlydt]What you're suggesting with a torque sensing AWD system from the skyline is a system from a car costing about $100,000 in the NA market for a car that will have an entry point of just over $22,000 probably[/quote]

The Skyline isn't expensive just because of its AWD system, there's a lot more to it. That engine, the gearbox, the god knows how many propshafts, the gyroscopes, the sensors, etc... that car has more computing power than the entirety of Silicon Valley. Torque-sensing AWD doesn't cost THAT much in itself. Would be useful to have as an option, anyway.

2 April 2010

[quote Rover P6 3500S]They've got the platform and Kia is the new Skoda in terms of huge brand turnarounds, so I reckon they really could go after a slice of the premium car market.[/quote]

Kia have certainly turned themselves around astonishingly quickly, but I think they've got a bit to go before they reach Skoda quality. I still find the latest Superb to be an epically impressive motor... I don't see what an Audi A4 or A6 offers apart from the badge and possibly better drive. But cars like the Soul - a genuinely interesting car, to be coming from Kia, shows they're really catching up with everyone else. Same goes for Hyundai.

Only thing is, they need to get a steadier dealer network; their current dealers seem to be on tiny premises, which might hold them back.

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