It's only taken a little more than three years, but Kia has finally given the greenlight to their Kia GT Concept from 2011. It's going to production and will hit U.S. showrooms by the end of 2016, because Kia thinks they can take on the Porsche Panamera and Audi A7.
Reading that sentence will probably be followed by a reaction somewhere along the lines of "HUH?" But I like this move. It's gutsy and different. Good on Kia for having the stones to do that.
But as we reported recently, Kia hasn't had an easy time segueing into the luxury market. Almost no one is buying their $60,000 Kia K900 sedan. Sure, it comes with a lot of value, but the badge means a lot to buyers who spend a ton of cash on their cars, even if people like to say that it doesn't.
Edmunds says the greenlit Kia GT will be rear-wheel drive and powered by a 3.3-liter turbocharged V6. The concept had nearly 400 horsepower, so let's hope that carries over to the production car.
One thing that won't is the concept's "suicide doors," Edmunds says, but buyers will get "a high-end cabin with a wide array of electronics systems." I hope so. They're increasingly playing to a tough crowd.