New Model News

2021 Kia Sedona enters the ring with an evolved exterior

Kia's redesigned minivan is poised to make a big play for U.S. buyers.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

It's only a partial reveal but Kia has given the world its first look at the redesigned 2021 Kia Sedona, which is called the Kia Carnival in global markets. The minivan's fresh looks showcase what the company calls "Grand Utility Vehicle" style, perhaps as a dodge around the minivan stereotype.

Compared to the 2020 Sedona, the 2021 model has a front end with a shorter overhang. The base of the A-pillar has been moved back, allowing for the creation of a new, longer hood. Many of the design hallmarks on the front end, including the headlamps, are straight out of the Kia cars playbook. The car's high beams are integrated into the corners of the grille. Low beams sit separately.

2021 Kia Sedona The minivan has similar light design features on the front and rear.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Beneath, the sculpted bumpers and lower air intake are matched with metallic trim and a black lower bumper, giving clear indications of the minivan's SUV-focused design inspiration.

It features a longer wheelbase, which allows for more cabin space and gives the car a beefier design vibe. Kia has given the model bolder wheel arches and sharper body linens. A horizontal character line runs the length of the model connecting front to rear.

Designers have chosen to give the model a new "island roof" design, which features blacked-out A- and B-pillars that support the body-colored roof. The van's C-pillar, however, features a chrome design inspired by the 2021 Kia Sorento. The chrome fin, which wraps beneath the tapered rear windows and extends towards the tailgate, is finished with a subtle diamond pattern that is also reflected throughout the inside of the car.

At the black of the van there are combination lights inspired by the design at the front of the vehicle. A lighter extends across the back of the vehicle and is accented by a chrome line that sits high on the tailgate. A metallic lower skid plate protects the undercarriage.

More details about the minivan are expected soon. Expect to see the model reach U.S. shores later this year.

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Polestar currently operates four showrooms in the U.S.

Photo courtesy of Polestar

Polestar, an electric performance car brand, will be opening 15 new sales locations in the U.S. by the end of 2021. Called Polestar Spaces, the showrooms are more in line with what Tesla offers and less like a traditional auto dealership.

Each Polestar Space features minimalist Scandinavian-like design, pulling together the heritage of the company with a modern sales environment. Each location is staffed by non-commissioned Polestar Specialists. Test drives can be coordinated on-site or at home.

In the next few months, locations in Austin, Texas; Boston; Denver, Seattle; South Florida; and Washington D.C. will open. Those new showrooms will be established in connection with established retailer groups in the area. Additional information regarding the D.C. and Florida locations is expected soon.

2021 Polestar 2 The fastback Polestar 2 is a head-turner. Photo courtesy of Polestar

The second-half of 2021 will welcome the opening of additional showrooms in Atlanta; Central and South New Jersey; Connecticut; Dallas; Detroit; Minneapolis; Phoenix; and Orange County, California.

Specific showroom details are available at Polestar.com/Spaces.

"In 2019 we stated our goal of servicing 85% of the addressable EV market within a year of the Polestar 2 launch," said Gregor Hembrough, Head of Polestar in North America. "With these 2021 appointments, we will accomplish that and more- especially with our free pickup and delivery servicing within 150 miles of a brick-and-mortar Polestar location."

Polestar Spaces are already open in Los Angeles (Santa Monica) and Manhattan, plus two locations in the San Francisco Bay Area (Corte Madera and Santa Clara).

The automaker currently offers the Polestar 2 for sale in the U.S. AutomotiveMap recently had the opportunity to test drive the car for review.

It was recently confirmed that the Polestar Precept concept is headed to production. The concept version of the car is noted for its sustainable materials and minimalist design.

Additionally, Polestar and Koenigsegg are working on a project.

Further markets for expansion will be announced later in 2021.

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A diamond mesh grille fronts the 2022 Kia K8.

PhPhoto courtesy of Kia Motorsoto courtesy of Kia Motors

Goodbye, Cadenza. Hello, K8. The Kia Cadenza is one of those cars that is easy forgotten about (if you ever knew about it in the first place) and frequently passed over in favor of the Toyota Avalon or the like. Still, most every automotive journalist who has driven it likes it.

So, Kia's taking the lessons learned from the Cadenza and some from the K5 and Stinger, and rolling them into a new large sedan, the 2022 Kia K8. This week the company unveiled the first official images of the car ahead of its debut. This is the first vehicle named the K8 in Kia history.

2022 Kia K8 The K8's headlights have integrated turn signals.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

2022 Kia K8

"Following our recent company rebrand, we keep moving toward our new brand values with a new model – the K8. This modern sedan has been designed with innovation and elegance at its very core," said Karim Habib, Senior Vice President and Head of Kia Global Design Center. "While paying homage to the K7, the K8 looks to the future. Its progressive exterior takes on character and emotion, and combines those qualities with an expressive looking front and a dynamic swooping rear, giving the K8 a high-quality, premium presence that takes direct inspiration from some of the world's most technically advanced yachts."

As seen in the photos, the car wears Kia's new logo on its badging, and has design lines reminiscent of the vehicles it has taken lessons from. There's a frameless tire nose grille with diamond lattice, turn signals integrated into the headlights, an elongated side profile, chrome finish along the bottom of the doors, and a roofline that trails off into the trunk. It's all very much from the Kia sedan lineup.

Kia promises that the car will have a "first class" interior that establishes "new benchmarks in premium quality". The sedan will deliver a high-performance driving experience yet be comfortable to ride in, according to Kia messaging.

The rear of the Kia K8 features elongated taillights.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The Kia K8 is expected to arrive in showrooms later this year but the U.S. might not get it until after it's arrived in Korea and Europe.

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