KIA confused us launching a KIA K3 in Mexico last week and showing what it was the 7th generation Rio Sedan (codenamed as BL7) renamed as K3 for strategic markets. Now we have new pictures of the “real K3” which is the next-gen Forte/Cerato sedan that after all could be renamed as K4. This prototype was spied somewhere in South Korea by our colleagues at Motorsjason.
The new Kia K3 was revealed on August 8th at 8:00 pm in Mexico City, aligning with Kia’s 8th anniversary celebration in the region. Initially expected as Forte Sedan successor, the All-New Kia K3 sedan will combine sophisticated design and a spacious interior, redefining market segments and drawing attention from upper-segment buyers but it is not confirmed that will arrive into the U.S.
Codenamed as CL4, the real Kia K3 (that could be renamed as K4) is a vehicle that will carry over the current generation in terms of chassis and powertrain, despite minor updates and the possibility to include a Hybrid variant. Following what Kia have done with the Optima/K5 nameplate, it was expected to be renamed as K3, but that will depend if KIA decides to sold the Mexican K3 in U.S too.
Current line-up in the Forte Sedan is a choice of a gasoline engines, including a 1.6 Turbo GDi with 201 hp used for the GT variant, while the rest of the line-up conforms with a 2.0 naturally aspirated and 147 hp. This is the same line-up as Hyundai’s Elantra, despite Elantra has the hybrid, but will Kia launch a new K3 crossover with a hybrid powertrain and compete against its own Niro?.
In the US-market, Kia discontinued the Forte hatch after the second generation of the model while Kia still builds a hatch version of the current generation model but only for markets like South Korea, Australia or Chile marketed as Cerato.
In terms of design and despite the heavy camouflage of the prototype we can see design cues similar to what we already have seen in the EV9. It also remains us to what Kia have done in the recently debuted Picanto facelift, a model that is only available in Europe, South Korea and some emerging markets.