Kia has commenced road trials of the production version of the Kia SP concept SUV (Kia Tusker), in its home market in South Korea as seen in these spy shots. Peter Schreyer, Chief Design Officer of Kia Motors Corporation, said at the unveiling of the SP concept at this year's Auto Expo that the production version "will be very close" to the concept, and on closer observation of these images that certainly seems the case.
The production version is likely to be called the Kia Tusker, as the company set up a poll asking the public to vote between the names 'Kia Tusker' and 'Kia Trazor' with the former reportedly having managed maximum votes. The Tusker will be the first product for Kia in India, and sales are set to commence in the second half of 2019.
Reports state that the Tusker will be based on an updated version of the Hyundai Creta's platform. However, it is reported to debut new powertrains which will later become a mainstay on premium Hyundai and Kia models. An all-new BS6-capable 1.5-liter diesel engine with reported improvements to refinement and fuel efficiency could power the Kia Tusker/Kia Trazor. This engine is reported to develop 115 hp and 250 Nm of torque (as compared to the Creta's 1.6-liter CRDi which makes 128 hp and 260 Nm).
The petrol engine too will be an all-new 1.5-liter unit, which from 2023 onwards will be capable of supporting a hybrid drivetrain.
The Kia Tusker will be manufactured at the company's brand new plant located in Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh. In June this year, at the 2018 Busan Motor Show, Kia confirmed that the SUV would be sold in its home market as well.
[Images from - Cafe.Naver.com]