Kia K8 debuts brand's new design direction

We may never see the K8 on Australian roads but elements of its design, like the frameless grille, may trickle down to future models here.

2 weeks ago
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Derek Fung
Journalist

While it’s extremely unlikely to ever appear in Australian showrooms, the new Kia K8 “epitomises Kia’s new brand direction”.

It is the first car to debut after the company announced its updated product strategy, and is the first vehicle to sport Kia’s new logo.

The K8 could provide a few clues about the upcoming Cerato facelift, which was recently spied undergoing testing, and is scheduled to arrive in Australia in May.

Up front the K8 features a new “frameless” take on the brand’s tiger nose grille. The bumper is relatively free of fake vents and scoops, but features diamond-shaped accents.

The indicators are said to light up like a star cloud.

According to Karim Habib, Kia’s design director, the K8 “takes direct inspiration from some of the world’s most technically advanced yachts”.

Towards the rear there’s a dimpled chrome wedge on the D-pillar, while a set of Y-shaped tail-lights that stretch all the way across the boot.

Although it has a strong fastback shape, the K8 has a sedan boot lid rather a lift-up tailgate.

Measuring around five metres long, the K8 replaces the K7/Cadenza as the company’s flagship front-wheel drive sedan, and will sit above the Optima-replacing K5. Although it’s pitched as a “sports sedan”, the K8 will be a more sedate alternative to the rear- and all-wheel drive Stinger.

Although the company has committed to releasing seven EVs by 2027, the K8 will use a traditional platform with internal combustion engines, although hybrid drivetrains may be available.

With the car set to go on sale in South Korea “later this year” details about the K8’s drivetrain options and the interior have yet to be revealed.


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