Kia Trail'ster Concept Video, First Look

Jason Siu
by Jason Siu

Is the Kia Soul really off-road capable?

The Korean automaker is testing the idea with its Trail’ster concept at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show, adding an extra 2.5 inches of ground clearance to the boxy, compact car. Under the body are aluminum skid plates for protection while Pirelli Winter Carving tires has this all-wheel drive Soul driving on snow and mud with ease.

2015 Chicago Auto Show Coverage

Under the hood is a 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder engine with 185 hp and 185 lb-ft of torque that sends power to the front wheels while an electric motor is used to power the rear wheels under acceleration while adding regenerative braking capabilities. Combined, the total system output for the hybrid powertrain is 220 hp and 285 lb-ft of torque. Another interesting aspect of the Kia Trail’ster concept is its retractable cloth panel on its roof, offering some of the characteristics you’d expect from a convertible.

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GALLERY: Kia Trail’ster Concept

Discuss this story at our Kia Trailster forum

Jason Siu
Jason Siu

Jason Siu began his career in automotive journalism in 2003 with Modified Magazine, a property previously held by VerticalScope. As the West Coast Editor, he played a pivotal role while also extending his expertise to Modified Luxury & Exotics and Modified Mustangs. Beyond his editorial work, Jason authored two notable Cartech books. His tenure at saw him immersed in the daily news cycle, yet his passion for hands-on evaluation led him to focus on testing and product reviews, offering well-rounded recommendations to AutoGuide readers. Currently, as the Content Director for VerticalScope, Jason spearheads the content strategy for an array of online publications, a role that has him at the helm of ensuring quality and consistency across the board.

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