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Kia’s design boss will welcome a pickup “with open arms”

That seems to be inching towards the lucrative American pickup truck segment. The company The project was approved in 2019, although we haven’t seen any proof of that, and their head of design recently stated that he’d love to work on a truck.

“I’m very welcome [a pickup] with open arms,” ​​Karim Habib said in an interview with British magazine Autocar. Kia’s legacy certainly doesn’t stem from vans, but the company has proven it is capable of venturing into new segments as needed (especially by releasing Telluride), and sister company Hyundai fight with each other Santa Cruz that entering the trucking world does not require decades of experience building pickup trucks.

Of course, the definition of a pickup varies depending on who you ask and where they live. Habib seems to be alluding to a product that can reliably be sold in the United States: “It will fit in with our portfolio and brand. In the pickup truck market in the United States, there is a There’s a huge amount of loyalty to existing brands. But, there’s also new things opening up, so there might be room for another brand.”

Reading between the lines reveals that a muscular Kia truck is on purpose Ford F-150 will not soon see the light that awaits at the end of the production line. He doesn’t elaborate on the new things he sees unfolding; while this is pure speculation, he could be referring to a renewed US interest in smaller models, like Ranger’s Ford and Maverick, or hype around electric pickup trucks.

Kia could take several paths to the truck market. The fastest, simplest and cheapest would be Santa Cruz, give it a Kia-like exterior design, and call it a well-done job. It is also possible to design a model from scratch. Another hot spot (and, in a grand scheme of things, much more realistic) worth mentioning is Kia’s Australian division asked the executives for a body-on-frame SUV in the veins of Chevrolet Tahoe. If the project goes through, the architecture will likely also underpin a Hyundai and Genesis-branded vehicle to split development costs. Putting it under a truck would also make sense.

There is no official information yet, but it seems that Kia is keeping a close eye on the pickup segment.

Kia has made trucks before, but not the kind you might see at Home Depot in Salt Lake City. In some markets, the company has been selling a cab-forward pickup truck called the Bongo (or in some countries, the K-Series) since 1980. Pictured above, it’s purely a car Commercial vehicle, it was not developed with family transport duties in mind, and it has been offered in several configurations including single and dual cab models.

Several factors have kept Bongo away from our market, including Chicken tax. Kia also explored the opposite end of the pickup spectrum when it announced Soulster concept in 2009. It never made the leap from the gallery floor to the show floor. Continue traveling back in time and you’ll come across KCV4 Mojave (pictured in the gallery above), envisioned as an alternative to forest ranger.

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