We May See a Good-Looking Premium Korean Yet: Kia Announces GT Production

Kia GT Concept

10 years ago, Kia, along with its Hyundai stablemate, housed a lineup of cars with styling that made the Toyota Avalon look like a Maserati Quattroporte. Then, in 2008, the Forte, molded by ex-Volkswagen and Audi designer Peter Schreyer, ushered in a new era of good-looking Korean cars that has completely transformed Kia’s image in just a few short years. No longer were the Koreans seen (as the Japanese automakers before them) as cheap imports competing on price above anything else. While the $35,100 Cadenza is the most obvious example of Kia’s move upmarket, the company has yet another trick up its sleeve: according to Automotive News, Kia is readying a production version of its GT concept car first shown at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 2011.

The sedan is not expected until late 2016 or 2017 at the earliest, according to the article. As the name suggests, it will be a large, RWD cruiser and will likely be the Korean manufacturer’s version of many of Cadillac’s offerings, that is to say a less expensive alternative to the glut of luxosedans hailing from Germany. The production GT will be the second RWD Kia on sale, as the range-topping K900 is set to debut early next year. There will obviously be design changes by the time the GT surfaces (the fender-mounted side mirrors immediately come to mind), but the final version should look a hell of a lot better than the similar, slow-selling Hyundai Equus. Hopefully the Kia will be less anonymous than that plain-looking sedan, and we’ll have a better understanding of how well the Koreans fit in a segment dominated by European competitors.

Photo courtesy of Kia

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About Cameron Rogers

Cameron Rogers is the founder and lead writer at Downshift Autos, the only automotive blog on the Internet*. Born in the back of an AMC Gremlin, Cameron vowed to never let this extraordinarily embarrassing detail define him, so help him God. He drives a GTI but absolutely will not shut up about it if somebody asks. He will not hesitate to let people know that no, they shouldn't get a Porsche 911 when a Morgan 3 Wheeler is so obviously the superior choice. He is obsessed with the seats of a Carrera GT and the steering wheel of a Fisker Karma. He once sat in the driver's seat of a Tesla Model S, his greatest accomplishment to date. He is just now realizing that writing an autobiography, however miniscule, in the third person is odd and unnerving. *As of this writing, Cameron has been informed that there are, in fact, many websites and blogs centered around cars and car culture. He regrets his grievous error.

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