- New C-segment vehicle will be Kia's first diesel passenger car
SEOUL 2 October 2003 - Kia Motors is providing a hint of its latest product offering at the Busan Motor Show currently running in Korea.
Beneath an acrylic cover that veils the exact details of the exterior, visitors to the Kia booth can see the silhouette of a new C-segment sedan, named Cerato. The vehicle which replaces the existing Spectra sedan, will be available in a four and five door version when it is released onto the market in 2004.
Aimed at young, white collar professionals, the Cerato’s styling is in line with Kia's young, sporty friendly brand aspiration. Shorter and higher than its predecessor, the Cerato is designed to fit more comfortably into the C-segment, where it will compete with cars like the Ford Focus, the Volkswagen Golf, the Honda Civic and the Toyota Corolla.
The Cerato will feature a range of engines including a 1.5 litre and a 2.0 litre common rail diesel powerplant. The Cerato will thus be the first passenger car that Kia has ever produced with a diesel option. The provision of a wider range of diesel models is in line with Kia's strategy to broaden the brand’s appeal in Europe.
Other engine choices will include a 1.6 litre gasoline engine and a 2.0 gasoline engine featuring continuously variable valve timing (CVVT) technology. CVVT increases the fuel efficiency of the engine and decreases emissions.
The four door version of the Cerato will make its global premiere at the Detroit Motor Show in January 2004. The car will retain the Spectra brand name in the North American market, where its predecessor has consistently topped the sales ratings for Kia.
The 5-door version will be unveiled for the first time at Geneva in March of the same year and will make its U.S. debut in New York in April. Production begins in mid-October for the domestic version of the car and in December for the export model.
Kia Motors chief operating officer, Yong-Hwan Kim said, "The Cerato is a very important car for Kia. It will continue to raise perceptions of the brand around the world by offering a full range of safety and convenience features at a very competitive price. More importantly, it aligns Kia’s C-segment product more closely with current and future market trends and will be a valuable asset in the Hyundai/Kia Group’s goal of becoming a top five global automaker by 2010."
Kia Motors Corporation (www.kiamotors.com) is one of the world's fastest growing automobile companies. As a part of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, Kia aims to be a top five global automaker by 2010. Kia's 15 manufacturing and assembly operations in 12 countries make more than a million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 190 countries. Founded in 1944 Kia is Korea's oldest manufacturer of automobiles. Kia today has 30,000 employees with annual revenues of $12 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and the international sponsor of the Davis Cup for the Euro/Africa zone.
Editor's Note: Exact specifications are not yet final. Photographs and full technical specifications of the Cerato will be released closer to the world premiere at the Detroit Motor Show in January.