Kia’s head of design says the production version of the new Kia Carnival had to be modified substantially from the concept car in order to accommodate the additional seating capacity required.

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Admitting the Carnival’s look was majorly changed midway through the design process, Peter Schreyer says the changes were necessary for the people mover’s requirements.

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The new Carnival, which remained the last piece of the revamped Kia design puzzle was unveiled at this week’s New York auto show, eight years after the second generation made its debut in 2006.

Although meant to be based on the Kia KV7 concept car which was shown at the 2011 Detroit Autoshow, the new Carnival looks substantially different.

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“Our intention really was to stay very close to the showcar” Schreyer told the Australian motoring media.

“But the way the project developed we needed to accommodate a lot of people inside the car and make it very practical and the show car was much shorter, so we had to make some considerable changes and we couldn’t do that just be extending the type of design.”

Schreyer admitted that the team attempted to simply stretch the concept car’s deign but it didn’t work.

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“It was quite straight so if you extend it, it was going to just look like a bus. We wanted to put a lot of dynamics into the car and give it a dynamic appearance and so we needed to develop [something new], where we changed the approach a little bit.”

Though the 2015 Kia Carnival may not look like the KV7, Schreyer said it wouldn’t have been what it is without its concept.

“You can still feel the spirit of the showcar, you can feel it somehow and without the show car we would not be where we are now, which is why I am happy we did it even if the car doesn’t look like it has been done straight from the showcar.”

The new Kia Carnival will go on sale in Australia in December with a choice of a 3.3-litre petrol V6 or 2.2-litre turbodiesel. More here.