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Kia’s Provo concept set to take on Mini


The Kia Provo concept is a very clear signal that the South Korean carmaker is looking to take on the Mini, its stunning ‘coupe-style hatchback’ having been officially unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.

The Provo concept is described as a mix of ultra-modern technology and luxury materials, and these are two factors that will clearly place the concept car into the world of premium small cars – which is dominated by the Mini, but it also includes other vehicles such as the Citroen DS3.

The Kia Provo will be something of a testing ground for the company’s new seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox which will be initially added to other production models, and then there’s an all-wheel-drive system that will employ an electric motor to provide a 33kW power boost to the rear wheels when the vehicle is cornering or accelerating. We should note that the Provo will be able to run only in the electric-only mode at low speeds, with the electric motor recharging on the go thanks to regenerative braking.

The vehicle will be powered by the same 150kW 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine that will be featured in the Kia Pro_Cee’d hot-hatch.

The design cues the Provo takes range from many brands, with elements like wraparound windscreen from Saab, a floating-style roof from the Mini and a rollover-bar-mimicking rear roof section from the Smart.

The concept features a rather aggressive-looking front end which incorporated large lower air intakes as well as a carbonfibre splitter and headlights that are comprised of 850 LEDs.

The LED lighting design features several configurations which can be selected through by the driver.

The entire dash is made of carbonfire and the door releases, footrests and pedals are made of polished aluminium. There is one truly striking aspect of the Provo cabin that we must mention, and that is the single-piece, wave-like construction used to create the two front seats – covered in diamond-quilted leather.

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