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Just like its big sister company Hyundai, Kia Motors is on a fast track to the top.

The Koreans are on a mission, and that mission is to be the dominant player in the volume car game.

And for anyone in the know, they’re well and truly on the way to doing just that, by building great looking quality vehicles at the right price.

Any doubts you might have, are summarily dispelled with just one look at the new Hyundai ix35, or the strikingly similar iteration from Kia, the  new Sportage.

So you shouldn’t be at all surprised at the visual treat that is the next generation Kia Magentis.

This car is bound to turn heads at the New York International Motor Show next month, where it makes its world premiere.

Kia design guru Peter Schreyer (he penned the original Audi TT) is the man responsible for this new direction, which is likely to put even more pressure on the Japanese carmakers such as Toyota and Mazda.

Styling wise, both Kia and Hyundai may already be ahead of the Japanese giants, if models like the new Kia Cerato and ix35 are any indication of what is to come.

But what is really interesting with this next generation Magentis is how close the car looks to the actual concept sketches.

So often, great looking concepts are discarded by omnipotent bean counters for more conservative approaches, which can be bitterly disappointing from a brand perspective.

Moreover, it’s often the styling that will convince nervous buyers to jump ship and take a chance on a manufacturer that they may have avoided in the past.

The new Magentis is longer, lower and wider than the current car, and with a coupe like appearance and low profile, it should be a big hit with savvy new car buyers.

And its not just the exterior styling that Kia seems to have nailed. Equal effort has gone into spicing up what were rather bland, if not, low rent interiors.

Created by the Kia design team in California, we are told that the interior will be similar to that in the latest Kia Sportage.

That is, the car will be spacious with class leading safety and luxury specifications, while being very much a driver-focused cabin.

CarAdvice will bring you coverage of the New York Motor Show including a photo gallery of the new Kia Magentis.

  • James007

    Looks fantasic!! Both the new Magnetis and Sportage look like winners to me. I have a feeling Kia in Australia will be knocking on the door of the Top 10 sellers list by the end of this year.

    What Kia Australia needs to do though, is drop the ‘Magentis’ name and go back to the ‘Optima’ name, like what they use in the US. It’s a much better name!

    • Innova

      Agree. Optima sounds better than Magentis.

      • GoHyundai

        Yea true, when i first saw the word magentis, I had to stare at the word to pronounce it hehehe…hmmm…praying mantis…magentis…

        maybe kia will follow hyundai and do a
        K1, K2, K3, K5, K2x thing?

        • Innova

          It will be called Kia “K5″ in South Korea, follow K7/Cadenza

  • Baddass

    Wow, that is a fantastic looking car. Well done Schreyer, this is a masterpiece. The only fault I can see is that the tail lights are a little too similar to the Sonata, but still look great. One question though, is the Cadenza significantly bigger than this, and will they be sold in the same markets? I heard the Cadenza is closer related to the Equus, but I can’t be sure.

    • Martin

      The Cadenza is somewhat bigger. It’s meant to replace the Amanti/Oprius.

  • Baddass

    Is it just me, or is the side profile in the second pic look sorta like the Jaguar Xf?

    • James007

      That or very SAABish 9-5 looking!!

    • D

      Looking at the top picture the side profile also looks like an FG Falcon

    • GoHyundai

      or is it just that all cars are cars, and all cars look like cars????? especially today.

  • Robin Graves

    Looks like Hyundai give schreyer some fairly strict anchor points under the skin to stick too, very similar to the Hyundai siblings with a slightly different face. Schreyer probably spends about half an hour a week at work these days, just has to draw a grill.

  • Reality

    I keep telling the Toyota dealer we get cars from that the Camry is about to get serious competition. Toyota’s only chance will be if Hyundai and Kia don’t offer fleet discounts. These upcoming new Korean cars are just getting too good to be taken for granted.

  • Shak

    Beautiful car both inside and out, just ine quarrel with the front end. I dont like the fog/LED combo. Its as if the designers couldnt make up their minds and stuck both on. They should stick with the LED’s on the top specs and fogs on the rest.

    • Ectomorphian

      Interesting thought.

      But fog lights and LED daytime running lights have different purposes. Fog lights are bright and obviously are used to aid with ‘foggy’ environments and such. Whilst, LEDs with their strong intensity can probably penetrate through fog, but it isn’t really their purpose. Unless of course they develop LED fog lights.

      The Kia’s arrangement does remind me of the new HSVs though…

  • Patrick

    Toyota, Honda or Nissan would look much better if they weren’t desigened by those fat bastards in California. Let the Japaneses do their job please Toyota, Honda, and Nissan.

    • The Oracle’s Teacher

      I have to agree. I look at this car and wonder why on earth toyota can’t do this sort of styling level with the Camry.

  • Patrick

    Look at Lexus or infiniti(Nissan\’s Luxury brand) and see how nice their lineups are. They look nice because they were designed by Japaneses. Except for Lexus Rx and Hs since they were designed in California.

    • GoHyundai

      Lexus…??? their cars used to look nice,

      that was long time ago. not anymore. just look at them today. yuk.

  • Valet Dabess

    looks good but don’t forget the ft 86. mazdas already look good. toyotas on the other hand…

    • Shak

      Performace coupe, and family sedan. Why bother comparing.

    • GoHyundai

      yea mazdas look good i must admit. but let’s admit, they have a “plastic toy car” face to all their cars…

  • Hung Low

    One of the very few decent looking cars to be released in the past couple of years!
    Shockingly good!

  • Tom22

    Very fantastic. This is the first time ive seen a Korean brand that can take cues from other manufacturers without being a mangled mess. Props to Kia.

  • The Oracle’s Teacher

    Awesome design.

  • Howard

    Nice design , Poor Quality.. That’s Irony for Kia…

    • ptwhite2003

      I’m not so sure that’s true anymore. I really haven’t heard any commentators criticise the quality of Kia’s current efforts.

  • Matt

    I like your work Mr Schreyer

  • GoHyundai

    a whopping woops wow from me,

    regarding my K2, K3, Kia’s future naming,

    Kia’s already started on that just like Hyundai’s i series
    with their new Kia K7,
    will be interesting to see from now on,

  • Jo

    Howard you have no idea. The Koreans are running rings around the japs and germans when it comes to quality.

    Welcome to 2010

    • ADLover

      I still think Kia and Hyndai’s quality of plastic especially interior, isn’t good as rival European or Japanese company.
      And also I never ever ever read a article review said, good handling, good suspension and fun driving car from Kia/Hyndai.
      They are still cheap buy and cheap run cars.

      • jinsei

        ADLover, which planet are you living on?

        YEARS ago, CA said in their review on the old Magentis that its handling is already on par with that of the Mazda 6. Where were you back then?

        The i30, Cerato, Cee’d and ix35 also are receiving positive responses for its ‘good’ handling and suspension from Australian, European and the U.S journalists. Are they not Hyundai/Kia vehicles?

        So your comment above is totally misleading. Read some up-to-date reviews.

  • GTR

    Sadly enough I don’t like it! But it is a hell of a lot better looking then the old Magentis!

  • Martin

    I am amazed! haha. Only really one stupid negative comment. Maybe people are finally waking up to themselves and realising just how good a car from South Korea can be.

    Will this actually make it to Australia though…?

    Considering how little the Magentis sold will KIA even bother with this here too? I think they should and just advertise the crap out of it! Get it noticed properly this time. 😀

    • The Oracle’s Teacher

      It’s coming here.

  • david

    Gr8!…Love it! Magentis/optima who cares about a name.
    Now do i want a new sportage or magentis?…

    • The Oracle’s Teacher

      Same dilemna here.

  • sj

    I’m a so optimistic person.
    so i like optima name.

  • Anf

    Looking good, especially liking the design of the front ends on both, looks different and fresh, hopefully they dont tweak it so much so when its released it looks completely different…dont know why they do that, real annoying puts u off.

  • GoHyundai

    what will the price be in Aus?

  • http://huh martin

    Yes the Koreans are discovering style as to a Euro designer on board – it must be something missing in the genetics. What worries me is that a state-of-the-art diesel engine is absent from both the Kia and the Hyundai sister car. If the diesel comes I may buy Korean for the first time.

    • jinsei

      Hyundai/kia diesel range currently has no competitor except from German marques but equally good are their petrol engines.

      The 4 cyliner Theta engine is now directly injected and produces 149kw, which easily beats its Japanese competitors. Even Mitsubishi and Chrysler paid Hyundai US$60 million in royalties to use their 4 cyliner motors so there can’t be any quality issues.

      The V8 Tau 4.6 has been voted the Ward’s top 10 engine 2009 as well. So it’s quite clear not only that Hyundai have come a long way in engine technology but their engines are starting to stand out from the crowd.

      I m pretty sure the petrol wouldn’t dissapoint you so don’t rule it out until you test drive one.

  • david

    Dying to seeeeeeeeeee inside…*foams @ the mouth*

    • david

      Interior shots on kia-world.net