Here you have our next Interview, in this opportunity we have and a very special car from an special friend, Rockford from Indonesia and his Kia Sportage, telling us his story of how he tranformed his Sportage into an incredible SUV inspired by Kia’s Provo concept, debuted at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.
1. Give us some background about yourself.
I’m Rockford from Jakarta Indonesia, an active member of the Indonesian Sportage Community (also a mascot of some sort…) and an all round Car Enthusiast.
I’m a 23 year old IT consultant slash young designpreneur and I just finished my 2nd degree in economics.
2. Can you tell us some of the cars you had before?
In the past Ive had a Honda Fit, Nissan Xtrail, and Hyundai Accent Wit. But currently in use are my mom’s Chevy Sonic and of course my beloved Sportage.
3. Which car you modified first and why?
To be frankly honest with u, none of my car has ever been left stock. Light touches are given to each and every one of them to express individuality, but the first one to be “strikingly modified” was my Chevy Sonic because at that time i was challenged to pull of a “Bumblebee” look for the premier of Transformers 3 Dark Side of The Moon.
4. When was the first time you heard or seen the Korean Automaker?
I began my interest for the brand when Soul was first released (as a design conscious person, Soul immediately caught my attention with its uber chic design, too bad its not available here in Indonesia) and it escalated when Schreyer took charge of Kia’s design department.
5. How did Kia grabbed your attention?
Sportage was the first “Halo Car” to bear the “Tiger Nose” trademark here in Indonesia and its premium looks, list of features, and best in class value for money won me over. I love cars that stands out and Sportage definitely delivers. Even in stock form it already turns heads, but i love exploring the possibility of designs, thus I decided to add a bit of customization.
6. Tell us your current modifications on your Sportage.
I designed custom bodykits which consist of custom front bumper, sideskirts, and rear add-on inspired by the Kia Provo Concept. Wheels are a must and my pick goes to 20 inch RAV Predators finished in Gunmetal Polish wrapped in 245/40/R20 Nankang Noble Sport tyres. To make it stand out even more, I wrapped it all up in 3M Brushed Titanium vinyl coupled with Harley Orange accents on the roof, spoiler, sideskirts, and door handles.
Interior-wise, i wrapped most of the original upholstery with black nappa leather and orange stitching. And finally to top it all off, I switched the taillights with a Smoked LED Bar taillights i got from Korea. My most recent mods were the LED Foglamp Module courtesy of the Indonesian Sportage Community and the matrix LED turn signal module that enables the original DRL to flash orange sequentially like one of those new Audis~
– Kia “K” emblems
– Custom PROVO inspired bodykits
– Roadruns radiator grille
– Sequential turn signal LED DRL Module
– 20 inch RAV Predator wheels finished in Gunmetal polish
– 245/40/R20 Nankang Noble Sport tyres
– Kspeed rear wing
– Carbon eyelids
– 3M Brushed Titanium vinyl wrap (body)
– Oracal Harley Orange vinyl wrap (accents)
– Smoked LED bar tail lights
– LED arrow foglamps
– F1 Brake lights
– Custom nappa leather interior upholstery
– Custom dual output exhausts
7. What inspired you?.
In order to truly respect Mr Schreyer’s work, I decided to turn to one of Kia’s own concept car as a reference because I dont want to ruin the car’s original persona. Thus i was greatly inspired by the KIA PROVO CONCEPT in terms of exterior bodywork. I love taking inspirations from concept cars because it enables me to truly explore what the future of automobile has to offer.
8. What is the modification you like the most?
I love most of em, but if i have to pick one, it would be the exterior bodywork. Its still a Kia by any means, but it shows that a Kia can be both striking and chic to look at. Its unbelievable how many necks Ive broken with it.
9. Since you have now modded your Kia, what potential you see in it now?
I see a car that is flexible enough to be driven as a daily commute, yet at the same time cool enough to be taken to a gathering during weekends and events. Since Kias are rarely modified here in Indonesia, having one with such striking mods shows that a Kia can be just as cool as those JDM and USDM cars out there. The potential is there from the start, its just a matter of exploring and experimenting.
10. Tell us what you love about your Kia Sportage?
The balance between design and feature is simply stunning, but as a true Petrolhead there’s no way Im letting my car off Stock. Now with the added
touch of PROVO’s DNA, the car stands out even more. I call my car Kia “ProTage” which stands for “Provo” and “Sportage” and I love how easy it
is to spot at the parking lot 😉
11. How difficult is to modify your car in Indonesia?
Modifying a car in Indonesia is not that difficult to be honest, since there arent many road rules regarding modification, we are free to explore as long as the car is still street legal. Parts are not that hard to obtain (if your car is jdm) but since Kia is scarce here, modifying it takes a huge amount of patience. Either you custom build the parts from the ground up or import it directly from Korea (which can be a pain due to the high tax and fees)
12. Are you part of a car club?
Most definitely yes, Im an active member of ID-S, which stands for Indonesian Sportage. I would like to give them a HUUUGE SHOUTOUT because I couldnt have accomplished such mods without their support and knowledge! Ive got a picture of our group shot attached! Indonesian Sportage is filled with enthusiastic Sportage owners, each with their own twist n styles. Here are some of the mods that caught my attention:
– Optima Ice Cube transplant
– Compressed Natural Gas fuel convertion
– Full KDM OEM model convertion
– Custom pneumatic in car entertainment system
– Custom in-house arrow foglamp covers
And lots of other mods that are equally unique 😀
13. Do you usually work on your Sportage by yourself?
While the idea and concepts are done by yours truly, most of the work had to be done in a custom workshop. Custom bodyworks had to be done from the ground up and it takes professional custom hands in order to accomplish such detailed and clean overall result. So in the end, I would like to say that its a group effort.
14. What are the future plans for your Sportage?
Im still searching for the right lowering kit, since the car is a daily commuter and I couldnt compromise on ride quality. Custom springs are widely available here but mostly at a cost of ruining the car’s ride and drivability. So yeah, hopefully one will be available to complete the look of my car soon.
15. We are dedicating this space for you, for example thanking everyone you like or giving some inspiring words.
This is the 2nd Kia I’ve owned, my father used to own a Carnival back in 2004 and my how things have changed. The car runs smooth and the dealer is always superbly responsive to all of my requests and complaints (Shout out to KIA BINTARO for being such an awesome community-centric dealer!). I’ve never owned a car that has this much bond between man, machine, dealer, and community.
Secondly I would like to address a special shoutout to the INDONESIAN SPORTAGE COMMUNITY for establishing such a Family-like bond between all Sportage owners in Indonesia. I’m a proud active member and I will always do my best to take the ID-S name to a whole new level! Thanks a bunch guys~
And finally all of this wouldnt be possible without the invitation from the one Blog that serves as my source of information and reference regarding KDM Automotive and Lifestyle. The KOREAN CAR BLOG. Thank you so much Jose Antonio Lopez for the awesome opportunity, I really really appreciate it mate. Thank you to each any every one who ran the Blog with such passionate updates regarding KDM automotive. KDM deserves to shine in the ever growing automotive industries and you guys helped to achieve that!