The all-new 2018 Kia Cerato has been teased this week in a designer sketch ahead of its global reveal on January 15 at the Detroit motor show.
These images offer a first official look - albeit a heavily stylised one - at the car recently spied in hatch form. At the time, it was unclear if this car would be the Cerato or Europe's new C'eed, and it may indeed end up launching as both.
Known in the US as the Forte, the third-generation sedan is more of an evolution than revolution in terms of design, but looks to become more aggressive and move further upmarket than the current car.
The brand says the Cerato's "sleek and dynamic cues" have been inspired by the Stinger liftack, with a more "swept-back" exterior design giving the small sedan a more athletic look compared to the current model's cab-forward aesthetic.
New LED lighting signatures look to feature at both ends - though this will likely be reserved for higher grades - while the indicators have been removed from the head- and tail-light clusters and relocated to the bumpers.
Connecting the tail-light units is a horizontal strip, much like the Sportage SUV.
The biggest changes will be on the inside, swapping out the current car's dated layout and finishes for a more contemporary and simplistic design approach.
A floating tablet-style central display sits atop the dashboard, while far fewer physical buttons are present on the centre console - only the air-conditioning dials appear to have survived the button cull.
The new Cerato also scores a sportier new steering wheel, along with circular air vents inspired by aeronautical components at each end of the dash, again inspired by the Stinger.
Stay tuned to CarAdvice for our coverage of the 2018 Kia Cerato's reveal on January 15.
Listen to the CarAdvice team discuss the Kia Cerato below, and catch more like this at caradvice.com/podcast.