2012 Los Angeles International Auto Show December 6th, 2012

It was another exciting appearance for Kia at the Los Angeles Auto Show where the upgraded Kia Sorento and all-new Kia Forte (Cerato) premiered. Today on Kia-Buzz, we’re jumping onto the show floor to take a look at Kia’s presence at this year’s event.

The Aquaman-inspired Rio 5-door made an appearance after its premiere at this year’s SEMA show in Las Vegas. An ocean lover like Aquaman would be happy to know that the Rio has a reputation of being one the most eco-friendly vehicles in Kia’s lineup, especially since 85% of its material can be recycled at the end of its lifespan. The Rio 5-door received the world famous West Coast Customs treatment with special gold, green and orange exterior paint and custom metal fins attached to the body, along with oracle LED wheel rings and body lighting across the exterior and 20-inch color matched Asanti wheels wrapped in Continental rubber.

This fierce looking Batman-inspired Optima SX Limited was also on display at the auto show, with a matte and piano-black paint scheme exterior and dramatically lowered coilover suspension and muscular ground effects kit. It also features huge Ksport performance brakes for extreme stopping power, custom designed 20-inch black wheels with Batman logo center caps and a performance exhaust system. With a custom front grille shaped like a batwing that took over 40 hours to create, yellow LED lighting accents throughout the vehicle and the iconic bat signal etched into the SXL’s HID headlights, this ride truly captures the Dark Knight’s essence.

One of the main stars of the show was the upgraded Sorento CUV with an all-new platform, sophisticated new styling cues and significant improvements made to its ride handling and comfort. It boasts an all-new chassis, a new gasoline direct injected (GDI) V6 engine that delivers 290 horsepower, substantially redesigned interior and a next generation UVO infotainment system.The redesigned Sorento also adds a top of the line trim level– the SX Limited – which delivers an impressive roster of premium features and amenities. Although it’s dubbed ‘upgraded’ instead of ‘all-new’, a whopping 80% of its parts are either all-new or significantly redesigned, and it’s the first Kia vehicle to offer Kia’s next-generation UVO eServices voice-activated telematics system.

And now for Kia’s showstopper… The silk covers were pulled off and the all-new Kia Forte (Cerato) was revealed. It sits on an all-new chassis and is longer, wider and lower than the previous generation Forte, with more room, more performance and more premium amenities. It will be offered in LX and EX variants with a choice of an efficient 1.8-liter engine or a more powerful 2.0 liter engine. It also offers luxurious features like a ventilated driver’s seat and UVO eServices, setting a new standard for the compact segment.

The third-generation Forte (Cerato) boasts sleeker styling with ‘dynamic muscularity’ in a design that is longer, lower and wider than the current car, with an extended wheelbase. It also features an all-new bodyshell, upgraded equipment, a host of additional convenience and safety features, a more spacious cabin with enhanced quality, improved refinement and an upgraded powertrain line-up that delivers class-leading performance and fuel economy.

Here are some initial impressions:

“We’ve given it a good once-over in the flesh, and honestly, it might just be the best-looking car in the C-segment class.”

“The car is noticeably bigger than the old car, with a full two inches more in the wheelbase. There are also a few new toys to go along with the bigger size.”

Also making its North American debut was the K Velo, a mini velo bike designed by Peter Schreyer, which honors our humble bicycle beginnings.

NOTE – USA Specifications: Trim levels and specifications mentioned in this post are USA specific and may vary in other countries. Check with your local Kia dealer for models and specifications available in your country.


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