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by Brett Davis

Kia has announced it is thinking of producing an all-new two-door sporty convertible to take on the popular Mazda MX-5. The model hopes to develop a fresh, youthful personality to the brand.

Kia is currently going through plans to expand and separate itself from sibling company, Hyundai, and is thinking of way which could help it do this. Paul Philpott, European CEO of Kia, recently spoke about future plans, saying,

“There’s a big programme going on right now: How do we best differentiate Hyundai and Kia? In the past, we have been too close together, but if Kia is fun, dynamic and more youthful, Hyundai is more about style and comfort: more upmarket. VW manages brands more effectively than most. If you think Hyundai is more like VW, Kia is more like SEAT.”

One potential way to help the company expand, Kia says, could be to produce a small, two-door convertible sports car, targeted specifically at the Mazda MX-5 and its market. Mr Philpott added,

“I’d like to have a Kia MX-5. 2011 and 2012 are about establishing the brand. But for 2013 and 2014, we’re thinking about halo models that stretch the company forward.”

Kia chief designer, Peter Schreyer, has also recently commented on the potential of such a vehicle, saying,

“The brand deserves a sporty car, like a roadster”.

Although no specific information or design details have been revealed yet, a Kia convertible is expected to take on Kia’s current design language with the tiger nose grille and sharp, sword-like angles like the Kia Kee Concept car we saw in 2008 (pictured). However, additional design elements are likely to be created solely for the new sports car, differentiating it from the rest of Kia’s showroom lineup.

As mentioned, such a car isn’t likely to exist until at least 2013. We will keep you updated though.