Kia Motors is set to kick off its operations in the Indian market in 2019. First to arrive will be the production version of the Kia SP Concept that was unveiled at the 2018 Auto Expo earlier this year in February. The manufacturer had invited people to choose the name for the SUV via an online poll.
As per the latest results, the 'Trazor' moniker appears to the frontrunner followed by 'Tusker', 'SP-Z', and 'Trailster'. 'Trazor' leads the poll with 718 votes, more than double the number 'Tusker' (270) has managed. Expect the company to officially announce Kia Trazor as the name of the SP Concept based SUV soon.
According to a report, the production version of the Kia SP Concept will be launched in Mid-2019. It will rival the Hyundai Creta, Renault Captur, and Maruti S-Cross in India. Specifications and engine details remain under wraps. Kia may opt to borrow the engine and transmission from sister company Hyundai. For now, there will be a 5-seat version only. However, the company has confirmed that the platform can accommodate three rows as well and that a 7-seat variant may be introduced later based on customer response.
While test mules of the upcoming Kia SUV are yet to be spotted on Indian roads, spy shots of a similarly sized SUV emerged in March. The images were captured inside Kia Motors' premises in South Korea. Kia will manufacture the SP Concept based SUV at their new facility in Andhra Pradesh, which has been built with an investment of $ 1.1 billion.
Kia will follow up the launch of the SUV with that of a premium hatchback and another SUV/crossover. As per recent reports, based on the public response to its products at the Auto Expo, the Kia Stonic and Kia Grand Carnival are also under evaluation for the Indian market.
In August 2017, Kia commenced dealer roadshows in India giving potential dealerships owners a chance to acquaint themselves with the company and its products. The models on display included - Kia Picanto, Kia Sportage, Kia Sorento, Kia Niro, Kia Rio, Kia Cerato, and the Kia Optima. These products, however, are not confirmed for the Indian market.