Kia Motors fights slump with an upgraded Morning minicar
The second-largest automaker in Korea said Tuesday the latest release, an upgraded version of the third-generation Morning launched in 2017, comes with an enhanced exterior design, high-tech convenience features and high fuel efficiency.
The car has been popular and is fondly remembered by many in Korea as a budget-friendly option for young consumers. The new Morning is priced between 11.95 million won ($9,800) and 14.8 million won.
With a “tiger nose” shaped radiator grille and eight uniquely shaped LED headlamps, the new Morning has been designed to look more urban than the predecessor, Kia Motors said. The car can be equipped with either 14-inch or 16-inch wheels.
Kia Motors also equipped the new Morning with an collision avoidance assist system for all sides and lane keeping assist features for the first time. It has ventilated the driver’s seat and placed a 4.2-inch dashboard and 8-inch wide touchscreen infotainment system.
The company added car-to-home technology, remote control and voice command in the new Morning.
With 1.0-liter gasoline engine, the new Morning is rated at 76 horsepower and 9.7 kilogram-meters (70.2 pound-feet) in torque. It has fuel economy of 15.7 kilometers (9.8 miles) per liter with 14-inch wheels.
By appealing to younger consumers, Kia Motors said it hopes to boost its sales, which have remained weak for months since the coronavirus pandemic started. As overseas sales slumped even more than the domestic side from the Covid-19 outbreak, the company has been focusing on increasing production and sales at its home front.
For the first four months of the year, Kia Motors sold a total of 782,901 vehicles, down 11 percent from 877,839 units posted in the same period last year.
BY KO JUN-TAE [firstname.lastname@example.org]
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