Just in case there was anyone still out there who doesn’t think the very art-school, massive-wheel renderings that car companies release to preview a new design are total bullshit, Kia does a great job of reminding us. Are the drawings cool? Absolutely? Do they actually, really show us what he car will look like? Barely.


Take these drawings of the (European version) 2016 Kia Sportage just released before the crossover makes its debut in Frankfurt next month. Is there any way that you won’t be sort of let down at the cruel-reality-bludgeoned actual Sportage after seeing these images? Of course not. Sure, you can get some of the details from this: graphic taillight design, grille shape, headlight design bits, etc. — basically the details — but the proportions are so exaggerated, it’s really useless as a ‘preview.’

All automakers do this, I’m not just picking on Kia. Maybe I’m just tired and cranky and when I saw another ‘preview release’ that looks like a dazzling sci-fi cartoon car designed for people with massive legs and tiny short upper bodies and flat, squat cylinders for heads, I just realized I’m sort of sick of this crap.

Fun concept cars that are way out there, styling-wise, sure I get that and love those. They help push design farther, make tangible radical ideas. But drawing a production car with those same sort of exaggerated traits knowing full well that the production version, of course, won’t look like that, what the point? What are we getting here? A way to know what a designer wished the car turned out like?


Kia also says there will be some sort of new powertrain available and it’ll be made of nicer stuff like real leather and eagle beaks and thick slabs of smoked salmon and you’ll love it and all the usual stuff.

Sure, it’s fun to tease a design, but what’s the point if you’re teasing something that looks nothing like the actual car?


So, here, enjoy these daring renderings of a Kia Sportage that doesn’t, and won’t ever exist unless you eat a bunch of pages from Anime comics soaked in LSD.

Thanks, Kia. Thanks for nothing. I’m sorry to be like this in the morning, readers. It’s not you, it’s me. You guys are great.

Contact the author at jason@jalopnik.com.