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Seoul Motor Show: Kia Naimo EV Concept

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On: Mon, Apr 4, 2011 at 5:13PM | By: Chris Weiss


Seoul Motor Show: Kia Naimo EV Concept

Kia debuted a new electric concept called Naimo at the Seoul Motor Show. That's pronounced the same as everyone's favorite animated fish—Nemo. The Naimo bests the Nissan Leaf in terms of driving range and offers a series of new technologies.

The Naimo is powered by a 107-hp permanent magnet synchronous motor and a lithium-ion polymer twin-pack battery, the Naimo offers up to 124 miles of zero emissions range and 93 mph of speed.

The concept's name means simply "square shape" in Korean, and it's easy to see how they arrived at that name. Unlike the unconventional, pod-shaped 'Pop' that Kia unveiled at last year's Paris Motor Show, the Naimo is more of a conventional subcompact with particularly angular lines: the flat roofline, boxed off front-end, and square rear fascia, to get specific. Design elements include 20-inch alloy wheels and a high-powered air jet that replaces conventional windshield wipers.

Inside, the car is inspired by its home country with the use of locally sourced materials. Korean oak adorns the door panels and floor, while Korean han-ji paper lines the roof. Outside of that, the interior is quite simple and open. It appears to use a virtual instrument panel in place of a physical one.

Peter Schreyer, Kia Motors' chief design officer, describes the car in a statement: "Naimo is a perfect balance of innovation, high-tech, and Korean tradition."

I actually kind of like that distinctive, squared off front-end, although it looks about as anti-aerodynamic as possible. The flat rear-end is kind of unforgivable, though.

Kia wouldn't confirm any production plans, instead stressing that it is exploring possible options for the electric city car market.


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