Kia’s new all-electric concept car, which will debut at the Geneva International Motor Show, finally addresses the issue so many of us have complained about for years: why are there no cars that have more screens than we have fingers and toes? Kia’s new as-yet-unnamed concept solves this problem (barely) and hints at some interesting evolutions of Kia’s design language.
Also, the press release has some ridiculous language of its own. Here, read this:
“Automotive design is about capturing the heart and making it beat that bit faster for that bit longer. We believe that there’s absolutely no reason why that should change simply because the car is powered by electricity,” says Gregory Guillaume, Vice President of Design for Kia Motors Europe. “That’s why our all-electric concept is designed to not only get your pulse racing, but to also signpost our holistic and emotional approach to electrification.”
“Signpost our holistic and emotional approach to electrification.” Yeesh.
The concept car is Kia’s first all-electric four-door design, and was designed to avoid strict characterization, incorporating “elements of a muscular sports utility vehicle, a sleek and athletic family saloon and a versatile and spacious crossover.”
From a more real-world design perspective, I think the most interesting element here is how Kia is re-interpreting their corporate dog bone-like grille shape (which they call a “tiger nose” for some reason that doesn’t seem to have much to do with tigers) into a grille-less front fascia that is more suited to future electric cars that don’t require the same sort of frontal air intake as ICE cars.
The new “tiger mask” (their words, not mine) incorporates the headlamps and other front lighting, and, I think, looks pretty damn good. I think this motif can work very well on future production EVs from Kia.
The absolutely bonkers dash with its insane 21 screens thankfully seems to be a bit of a joke. The press release describes the screens as
“...a humorous riposte to the industry’s current obsession with ever increasing dashboard screens, the concept features 21 individual ultra high-resolution screens. These curve their synchronised way across the top of the dashboard in a layout that’s at the same time both casual and coordinated.”
It’s a huge relief that Kia seems to see that 21-screen dashboard as a joke, because, holy hell, it has to be. Now, I wouldn’t be surprised to find that it didn’t start as a joke, but when they were done they found that, really, there’s no other way to deal with that.
Those geode-like wheels are interesting, too.
I’ll be curious to see this thing in its entirety next month. It’s a bit overdone and ridiculous like most concept cars are, but that’s their whole point. I’d rather have this than a boring concept any day, even if it means reading more PR paragraphs like this:
“Kia prides itself on its power to surprise, which is why we wanted to move away from the rational and focus on the emotional, and embrace a warmer and more human approach to electrification. After all, electricity is found within every atom – it’s the energy that flows within us and around us on our planet. Harnessing its potential has propelled us from one innovation to the next,” says Guillaume.
Uh, yeah. Namaste?