The manufacturer, which has taken a lion’s share of sales under the UK scrap scheme, showed an updated cee’d, a new Sorento SUV and an all-new compact MPV called the Venga.
Kia president Hank Lee told press at the Frankfurt show that despite the recession the marquee has continued to invest in new models and marketing.
‘Our sales are up worldwide 8.5 per cent,’ he said. ‘And with these new models we will continue our offensive.’
The revamped cee’d has revised styling, lower C02 than outgoing models, a six-speed gearbox and still comes with the famous seven-year guarantee.
The ‘soft-roader’ Sorento features the marque’s excellent new 2.2-litre diesel engine as well as having the fresh six-speed automatic gearbox as an option. It’s packed with tech too, with keyless entry, reversing camera and start button all standard equipment.
But the most important debut of the three was the Venga. A smart compact SUV aimed at families that need space, but want a car that’s still fun to drive.
Poking around it on the stand, it’s large interior and impressive build quality are very apparent. There’s even a full-panoramic glass roof option that makes the interior incredibly bright.
Engines will include both 1.4 and 1.6-litre diesel and petrol units with stop/start engine technology for improved emissions and efficiency.
KIA Europe Chief operating officer Paul Phillpott said the brand has aspirations to be a top-three maker in Europe.
At the launch of three new models for the marque at the Frankfurt Motor Show, he said: ‘We’re gaining momentum all of the time. These new cars are the start of an important evolution for Kia in Europe.
‘We’re debuting new design with the same excellent warranties. And we’re focussing on our sales – our dealers are fired up and we’re raising our profile all the time. We want to be a major player in Europe.’
by James Baggott