In the last few years, Kia Motors has gone from making cars often brushed off as a runner up to other Asian automobiles to being one of the frontrunners in the import car world. Much of their success is due to a sincere effort to raise the bar in the economy car division, with Kia providing a higher degree of luxury and comfort features in even their base model cars.

The Kia Motor Company is based out of Seoul, South Korea. During the history of the company, bicycles, motorcycles and light trucks were all made for sale within the region. However, in the 1980’s, Kia patterned with the American car company Ford to begin producing automobiles for the open world market. By the 1990’s, Kia was producing and selling cars for the American market.

Today Kia cars have a strong presence in the American market. The hiring of Peter Schreyer as Chief Design Officer has resulted in a complete updating of style and luxury in Kia’s lineup of cars. Schreyer, who was previously known for his work with Volkswagen and Audi, came up with the idea of a distinctive grill design for Kia car models. The idea behind this Tiger Nose, as the grill design is known, is that it would make the Kia cars instantly recognizable. Beginning in 2009, all cars by Kia are bestowed with the Tiger Nose grill.

A few remarkable things about the Kia Company:

  • The name Kia roughly translates into “To rise up from Asia”
  • The Kia Company originally produced bicycle parts, later branching out into motorcycles and then car manufacturing.
  • During the military rule of Korea, Kia was ordered to produce only small trucks.
  • When Peter Schreyer was hired as Chief Design Officer, he undertook a re-design of the overall Kia style, it was determined that the grill of the cars should be have a distinct expression.
  • Kia shows its confidence in their cars reliability by offering a 10-year warranty on their vehicles.

Most popular KIA models

Since 2009, Kia has introduced a number of vehicles that are popular with drivers and professional car reviewers alike. The Kia Soul is now one of the most instantly recognizable cars on the market. The Soul combines a highly efficient economy car design with fresh, unique styling and loads of features. This combination attracts a wide gamut of drivers, from young college age drivers to middle aged adults. The Kia Rio is another compact car in Kia’s line-up that has been well received. The Rio is efficient, comfortable, and lauded by car review sites as being well equipped and fun to drive.

Kia has also become very well known for their affordable family cars, such as the Optima. The Optima is a midsize sedan, available also as a hybrid. The Optima is considered one of the best buys in the midsize sedan sector, as it comes standard with several features only available as extras with other car brands. The Optima is also renowned for its styling and interior design, with many reviews saying that the car has a European feel.

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