When Kia first unveiled the Soul-based Soul’ster concept at the Detroit Auto Show it almost seemed like a production certainty. But almost a full year since the car debuted and we’ve yet to hear anything more about the unconventional “convertible” version of the compact car/crossover. Now Kia’s design boss is putting his weight behind the project.
“Kia’s internal design community is firmly behind building the Soul’ster,” said Tom Kearns, chief designer of Kia Motors America, to the staff at PickupTrucks.com during an interview at the LA Auto Show. “We’d like to see it happen. There’s no official decision to build it but it’s still possible.”
An unnamed executive at the Korean automaker also told the truck site something about the car’s target demographic, saying that in the 1980s and ’90s, compact pickup trucks (which serve a similar purpose) were popular amongst college student and retirees, but that eventually those trucks became too expensive. In order to target that market again, such a vehicle would have to cost from $10,000 to $15,000. Currently the Soul retails for $13,995. We could also see the Soul’ster conquesting lifestyle buyers from brands like Jeep.
Executives weren’t willing to say any more on the matter but perhaps this year’s Detroit Auto Show will bring more Soul’ster news from Kia.