Kia Motors SP Concept
Kia Motors SP ConceptIBT Media/ Ken Sunny

South Korean carmaker Kia Motors kick-started its India innings with style at the Auto Expo 2018 which began on February 7. The sister brand of Hyundai showcased a total of 16 international models at ongoing India's biennial auto show at Greater Noida.

The highlight at the Kia Motors pavilion is the SP Concept SUV which is exclusively made for India. The company had the global unveiling of the SP Concept on the first day of the show.

Kia Motors claims the SUV concept provides a glimpse of what's in store for motoring enthusiasts once it kicks off retail sales in India, in the second half of 2019.

Kia SP Concept
Kia SP ConceptIBT Media/ Ken Sunny

The Kia SP concept features an unmistakable SUV DNA with a boxy design and bold stance. The face of the concept gets a bold design with Kia's unique and hallmark 'Tiger nose' grille. It is flanked by slim headlamps that are reminiscent of the Kia Optima. Both the grille and headlamp unit has an integrated stance. The clamshell bonnet, bigger tires, Hyundai Creta like tail lamps and chrome beading between them gives proper SUV kind character to the SP Concept.

Kia Motors is expected to unveil the production-ready SP Concept with a different name in the beginning of 2019. The company has also not revealed any technical details of the SUV for now.

In addition to the SP Concept, Kia Motors' pavilion at the Auto Expo 2018 also showcases an array of cars that include the Picanto, Rio, Stonic, Cerato, Cee'd, Soul EV, Cadenza, Stinger, Mohave, Sorento, Sorento, Grand Carnival, Niro Plug-In Hybrid and Niro Plug-In Hybrid. It remains to be seen which models among these will be launched in India.

Kia Stinger
Kia StingerIBT Media/ Ken Sunny

Kia Motors' journey in India so far

After the announcement to start the business in India in April 2017, Kia Motors India is currently setting up a plant in Andhra Pradesh. Kia's first production facility in the country is a $1.1 billion investment.

In July 2017, the company put the second gear by launching a dedicated website for India. The company also conducted a series of road shows in India throughout August and September 2017 to meet prospective dealer partners.