Horki concept car for China’s market

Kia Motors, together with its joint-venture partner in China, Dongfeng Yueda Kia (DYK), today unveiled a new concept car as well as new local brand name at the Shanghai Motor Show.

DYK has announced the new brand (logo shown above) will be called “Horki” – a combination of two Chinese characters, “Hor” signifying China and “Ki” signifying driving. Together, the name suggests ‘harmony and driving’. Horki’s product portfolio will have a range of vehicle types, and will also have a model with an alternative powertrain.

The concept car is based on Kia’s all-new Cerato (Forte) platform and is a ‘China-specific’ concept. No final decision on mass production of the concept car has yet been made.

Kia announced that the new brand is aimed at better meeting the specific needs of Chinese customers and will allow Kia Motors and its joint venture partner to follow a dual-brand strategy with clear distinction between the passion, sportiness and style of Kia products and the practical, economic and trustworthiness of the planned Horki vehicles.

It was also announced that the new brand would make its first appearance on the Chinese market during the second half of 2015 with vehicles produced at one of the DYK’s three Yancheng factories.

The introduction of new brands by joint-venture companies is a recent development in China’s auto industry. Having found that the early efforts to force foreign carmakers having joint-ventures in China to transfer technology had not been as successful as expected, the central government now sees these ‘j-v brands’ as being an acceptable alternative which still brings some technology transfer as well as helps develop ‘domestic’ brands.

To find out more about Kia models in Malaysia or to locate a showroom for a test-drive, visit www.kia.com.

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[Chips Yap]