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Overview of Kia’s Peter Schreyer

Overview of Kia’s Peter Schreyer

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We all know what early Kia cars looked and drove like. We also know the reputation they had as cheap looking, average quality Asian cars. That all changed in 2006 when the Korean automaker bagged one of the best design minds in motoring, Peter Schreyer.


Had you asked anyone back in 2006 whether they thought Kia would be where it is now, with some of the best looking cars around and we all know what the answer would have been. A resounding no. While it isn’t all down to Schreyer, his is the hand at the helm. The modern Kia Motors range offers a selection of cars comparable to our own domestic brands and isn’t afraid of taking risks.


So it was with interest that I read a post on Kia-buzz about Peter Schreyer and how he has evolved the design philosophy of this brand. The interview talks about how they take aspects of Korean culture, such as the ‘the simplicity of the straight line’ and use it to create a family of vehicles that appeals to a global audience.


We know from those earliest days that what works in Asia wouldn’t necessarily work here and vice versa. When our cultures were still getting to know each other, automakers built separate editions to work in Western and Eastern markets. Now our tastes and expectations are aligning closer, automakers build a global model to suit all of them, with smaller regional differences.


This video is an interesting one, describing the design process of the new Kia Optima. Well worth a watch if you have the time.

2016 Kia Optima

The 2016 Kia Optima sees a lot of improvements over the outgoing model. It is quite the refresh that improves pretty much everything across the board. This is a midsize sedan designed to compete on par with anything the European or our own domestic brands can put out. It does it commendably too.


The Optima is a sleek looking car that does indeed use the straight line well. Each panel has an element of the straight about it, while the roof flows nicely from the raked windshield round to the trunk and beyond. The Kia grille and angled lights are still present and correct, along with cool-looking vents and a lower grille.


Inside, the cabin of the 2016 Kia Optima also sees improvement in design, content and quality. It has a flowing character with smooth edges, soft touch materials and a feeling of comfort in any seat. The driving position is very comfortable and the new steering wheel really works for us.


Under the hood is a 2.4-litre four cylinder, a turbocharged 1.6-litre and a tuned 2.0-litre turbo four. Each uses either a six speed automatic or a seven speed dual clutch automatic transmission. Each has enough power and efficiency for just about any use.


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Categories: Car News