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Kia XCeed

Kia XCeed

IS IT a Coupe or is it an SUV? In fact, it's neither, for this newcomer from Kia opens up a whole new compact car segment.

According to the Korean maker, the new XCeed is a CUV - a crossover utility vehicle - which, with its sleek looks and high ride height, falls somewhere between a hatchback and a compact SUV.

Full details will be made public later this month, but this first, side-view image of the new Kia urban crossover shows a rakish, coupe-like design which the company says represents a sporty alternative to traditional larger SUVs.

The styling is a product of the brand's European design centre in Frankfurt, Germany, designed under the direction of Gregory Guillaume, vice president of design for Kia Motors Europe. It's the fourth member of the new Ceed family and will likely share the same drivetrain and features as its hatchback, estate and shooting brake siblings.

The combination of an elevated ride height and lower hip point give the XCeed a sportier driving position than a traditional SUV but, at the same time, its raised driving position offers a clearer view of the road ahead than a conventional family hatchback. Kia claims it will offer comparable levels of interior space and luggage capacity to Europe's best-selling SUVs.

It's not a new concept, but, thus far, coupe-cum-SUV crossover models have been the preserve of prestige brands like BMW and Mercedes-Benz, so the new XCeed could open up a whole new segment at the lower end of the new car market for Kia.

Emilio Herrera, Chief Operating Officer at Kia Motors Europe, comments: "The sporty design and demeanour of the new Kia XCeed CUV makes it more innately desirable than many taller, larger SUVs. Yet it offers this without compromising on versatility, with its intelligent packaging achieving the cabin and storage space of an SUV in a sportier body and more compact footprint."

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