So Square Its Hip: Kia Debuts Electric Naimo Concept in Seoul

Unveiled today at the Seoul auto show, the Kia Naimo Concept, although only as long as a subcompact hatchback, is packed with futuristic technology into a wrapper influenced by traditional Korean design.

The Naimo Concept is a look into what a future electric crossover could be. Taking its name and design philosophy from the Korean word Ne-mo -- meaning square shape -- the petite CUV wears broad shoulders and a chopped-off overhangs. The front fascia is defined by LED headlamps and a dot-matrix-like outline of the signature Kia grille; the rear hatch mimics the front with LED taillights placed high on the hatch. A wraparound windshield, no B-pillars, and low-drag 20-inch wheels dominate the profile, and a set of suicide doors make entry and exit an easy task.

Inside, Kia’s design team worked to create a feeling of tranquility and calm using soft Korean oak for the trim and the floor. Han-ji paper was used for the headliner to create a more airy and open feeling, and an asymmetrical glass roof allows light to pour into the cabin. Transparent organic LED displays replace the instrument panel, which is mounted high on the dashboard.

The Naimo is powered by a permanent magnet synchronous motor with a maximum output of 107 horsepower and 206 pound-feet of torque, carrying the Naimo to a top speed of 93 mph. Twin lithium-ion polymer battery packs sit under the rear floor and provides a range of 124 miles on a full charge. Depending on the charging cycle, the battery packs can be filled in anywhere from 25 minutes to 5.5 hours.

While technically only a concept, Kia will put the Naimo into testing to help develop future low- and zero-emission vehicles.

Source: Kia

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