SEMA 2010: Kia Unveils Forte Koupe Type R Concept in Las Vegas


Reconfirming its commitment to its motorsports program and showing just how much their street cars can benefit from track competition, Kia unveiled the Forte Koup Type R Concept at the 2010 SEMA Show today.

Painted in a menacing matte-black, the Type R Concept gets its inspiration from the Forte Koup race cars that competed in the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge last year.

Built by Kinetic Motorsports, which also builds Kia’s race cars, the Type R gets a widebody stance with a revised front fascia, big 18-inch BBS RG 18-inch forged aluminum wheels and modified suspension components. Inside the racing theme is continued with custom seats, carbon fiber inlays and a short throw shifter.

GALLERY: Kia Forte Koupe Type R Concept


See the official release and watch AutoGuide’s video of the car after the jump:

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Kia Will Return to GRAND-AM Road Racing in 2011

  • Two new Soul Special Edition1 concepts hint at future urban passenger vehicle variations
  • Success of first auto racing season in the U.S. inspires the Forte Koup Type R Concept

LAS VEGAS, November 2, 2010 /PRNewswire/ — Arriving at the gateway to the 2010-2011 auto show season, Kia Motors America (KMA) is ready to roll at the 2010 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas with a diverse and attention-grabbing lineup of concept and production-intent vehicles to further showcase Kia’s eye-catching new generation of vehicles. Additionally, following the success last year of its first road racing season in the U.S., including six top 10 finishes, KMA confirmed its plans to campaign the Kia Forte Koup in the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge in 2011, and unveiled the performance-inspired Kia Koup Type R Concept, built by Kinetic Motorsports. Amid the activity and DJ-spun tunes at KMA’s SEMA Show display (#10803), show goers also are privy to a sneak preview of two all-new Soul Special Edition concept vehicles developed with production intent, while KMA also has teamed with fashion and lifestyle magazine Antenna for the second consecutive year to create “The Duel,” two custom Sportage CUVs that demonstrate the playful and professional aspects of the vehicle with a closet full of style options.

“Customization makes up the fabric of the SEMA Show and Kia’s design-led brand transformation has paved the way for us to showcase clever, design-inspired vehicles that are production capable,” said Michael Sprague, vice president of marketing & communications, KMA. “Two more limited edition Soul vehicle concepts will artfully express the personalization options and fun available to consumers and tuners in the near future while our first year at the race track served as the inspiration for the exciting Koup Type R Concept.”

Soul White Tiger Concept

Building on the success and consumer interest in the four special edition Souls introduced over the past year, the Soul White Tiger Concept is a precursor to one of two all-new Soul special edition models planned for 2011. A combination of value, safety and technology with plentiful standard equipment, the 2011 Soul White Tiger takes design cues from this year’s Asian Lunar year animal — the Tiger — and dramatically combines an all-white exterior with one-of-a-kind tiger-themed graphics and a contrasting jet black leather interior.

Soul White Tiger Concept builds off of the Soul+ (plus) model with fog lamps, body colored bumpers, sport spoiler, black fender vents, rear bumper cat claw appliqué, alloy fuel door and features white-finish 18-inch alloy wheels to complete its expressive look. On the inside, the Soul White Tiger will captivate its passengers with its push-button start, black leather seating surfaces and heated front seats. A leather-wrapped steering wheel/shift knob and sport-styled floor mats with contrasting stitching and illuminated scuff plates add to the Soul White Tiger’s aggressive personality. The Soul White Tiger will be arriving in Kia retail showrooms in the coming weeks.

Soul Hamstar™ Concept

After three million views online and the launch of their own “Hamstar™” apparel line, the hip and music-loving hamsters from Kia’s award-winning Soul ad campaign are making their presence known at SEMA with a Molten Red Soul concept vehicle featuring custom Hamstar artwork and interior appointments. The Hamstar Soul Concept stands out from the crowd with its custom red and black color scheme, highlighted by a “star” graphic with the signature Hamstar script logo on the hood and off-black matte finish stripes on the urban passenger vehicle’s sides that are reminiscent of vintage warm-up pants. The exterior is dressed with black gloss and polished aluminum sport wheels for extra attitude and the all black interior includes red/black sport cloth seat materials with black chenille stars affixed to the back side of the front headrests. Special Hamstar sport floor mats and a rubberized Hamstar badge create an additional surprise design element.

A true game-changer for the Kia brand, the Soul was the first vehicle launched under KMA’s ongoing design-led transformation and kicked off the most aggressive new vehicle launch cycle in the automotive industry, which continues through 2011. The 2010 Soul has earned a trophy case full of prestigious awards and accolades since its launch, including earning a 2009 and 2010 “Top Safety Pick” from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), being a recipient of the “Best Family Cars for 2010” designation by and Parents Magazine, recognized as “Best Hatchback of 2010” by, achieving 2009 “Top 10 Coolest New Cars Under $18,000” status from Kelley Blue Book’s, being named to the 2010 Ward’s AutoWorld “Interior of the Year” list, and being named one of the “Most Exciting Cars of 2010” by

Forte Koup Type R Concept

Inspired by the excitement and competition Kia experienced in its inaugural season of racing in the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, and with an eye on future production vehicle applications, the Kia Forte Koup Type R Concept confidently showcases the performance possibilities Kia’s first two-door coupe provides. Developed by Kinetic Motorsports, who built and campaigns Kia’s Forte Koup race cars, the Type R features dramatically enhanced exterior panels that exaggerate the existing body lines, including the front fenders, rocker panels and rear quarter panels. The Forte Koup Type R rolls on BBS RG 18-inch forged aluminum alloy wheels and racing-inspired tires and suspension components. Inside, the Forte Koup Type R’s modified interior offers ergonomic improvements for the driver, while custom seat/door treatments and safety restraints reflect its sporty nature. A short throw shift kit with Kinetic gear shift knob and carbon inlay complements the dampened composite fiber disc clutch to enhance the driving experience.

Kia Forte Hybrid Concept

Proving that a compact hybrid sedan can be anything but boring, the Kia Forte Hybrid Concept demonstrates styling options for those looking for an alternative to a mundane hybrid ride. Created by Kinetic Motorsports, the Hybrid Concept combines a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine fueled by liquefied petroleum gas (propane) and lithium polymer battery with accentuated design characteristics, including body panel enhancements and a lowered stance, to create a one-of-a-kind personality for the environmentally-friendly sedan. The Kia Forte Hybrid Concept is accentuated by cast aluminum alloy wheels and low-rolling resistance tires for improved fuel economy and reduced road noise. On the inside, interior panel treatments feature custom enhancements, while a 1200 watt Infinity®2 audio system will entertain passengers.

“The Duel” Custom Kia Sportages by Antenna Magazine

Proving the 2011 Kia Sportage compact CUV can be both all business and all pleasure, KMA has again teamed with fashion and lifestyle magazine, Antenna, showcasing two custom Sportage concepts, created by Antenna, in “The Duel.” One of the customized Sportages is aimed at the recreational enthusiast and the other toward the on-the-go professional with cool gadgets, technologies, features and materials to fully appeal to all sides of the everyday male.

The matte red “Play” Sportage concept presents the fun, active side of the everyday male with a vehicle perfectly designed to pursue his personal interests. With new 20-inch MRR HR4 wheels, a custom Yakima® roof rack outfitted with a red and black Cannondale® QuikFX Bike with unique bike pedals and seat, drivers are able to stay active even at a moment’s notice. An iPod Touch®3 was molded into the center console for easy access to today’s latest news and music, while the cargo area was transformed into a tailgater’s dream with a custom-painted locker, motorized stainless steel barbeque grill and 22-inch LCD television.

For the tech-savvy professional on-the-go, the metallic blue “Work” Sportage concept is the perfect vehicle for business. With a full closet and dressing station fitted nicely within Sportage’s spacious cargo area, the professional male has the option of up to two suits, five shirts and five belts for any work situation4.

Design-Led Transformation and Product Line

Kia Motors is in the midst of a dramatic, design-led transformation, which has been delivering dynamically styled vehicles in several important segments at exactly the right time, contributing to the brand’s continued gains in U.S. market share. Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, safety features and new technology such as the soon-to-come UVO powered by Microsoft®5 in-car hands-free entertainment system. The launches of the 2011 Sorento CUV, the first vehicle to be assembled* at Kia’s first U.S.-based manufacturing facilities in West Point, Georgia, the dynamic 2011 Sportage compact CUV, sophisticated 2011 Optima midsize sedan and versatile Forte 5-door hatchback further enhance the lineup.

Kia’s model year 2011 vehicle line includes the Sorento CUV, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Forte compact sedan, Forte 5-door compact hatchback, Forte Koup two-door coupe, Rio sub-compact sedan, Rio5 sub-compact hatchback and Sedona minivan.