February 23, 2007 Kia will debut an all-new ex_cee’d cabrio concept car at the 77th Salon de l’Automobiles in Geneva in March. Based on the new three-door cee’d hatchback, due to go into production at the Zilina factory in Slovakia from December, the ex_cee’d shares the same platform, but features all-new exterior panels and a powered folding fabric roof. By adopting a fabric roof, the ex_cee’d deliberately goes its own retro way rather than following the trend towards cabrios with folding metal roofs. Kia’s new Chief Design Officer, Peter Schreyer paid special attention to designing a classic cabrio with a traditional soft-top roof: “I’m convinced that the fabric roof will have a renaissance. We’ve all lived with the romantic idea of open-air driving for a long time and for me, the fabric roof is the quintessential element of a truly rewarding cabrio.”
With its slight wedge shape profile, muscular wings over 19-inch alloy wheels, and aggressive nose with dynamic front styling, the ex_cee’d has instantly found a form that stands out from the cabrio crowd. The cabrio concept is finished in ‘meringue white’ exterior paint with a ‘bitter chocolate’ fabric roof – colours that are echoed by the interior’s two-tone leather.
“With this new cabrio concept car, Kia has once again demonstrated that it is a young, style-conscious company that knows how to combine elegance with dynamics,” enthused Mr Yong-Hwan Kim, Senior Executive Vice President and COO Kia Motors.
“The Kia ex_cee’d is a fresh aesthetic high-point in our history, an encouraging sign of the growing internationalisation of our brand and a step in the process of evolving into a European company with Korean roots,” he added.
The styling of the ex_cee’d cabrio hints at the future direction Kia vehicles could be taking under Schreyer’s guidance.