Interior Decorating

the KIA Niro Concept and interior design

The Kia Niro Concept is exploring the possibility of a B-segment car, which follows up on the earlier Provoke Concept Coupe but this time not as a pure driving machine with a racing attitude but more as a sporty concept which fits in for daily use.  On show as a pure 2-seater, the Niro can also be equipped with optional rear seats but the general idea is a fun vehicle for a young generation of drivers that just throw their outdoor sports gear in the back and go for a spin in the Niro. The exterior design appears very robust and simplistic with really big, muscular arches giving the Niro a very capable appearance.  The wheel design in anodised aluminium merges visually with the tyres to give the vehicle a very robust stance.  One dominant exterior feature is the brushed aluminium roof with a strong C-pillar but a very thin A-pillar which then runs down around the side windows to be connected again with the C-pillar to form one enclosed shape.  The next dominant feature is an underlying carbon tub which sticks out of the lower body shape to form the front and rear bumpers and the side skirts.  We spoke to the Niro’s interior designer Leslie Lau who explained that the Niro was designed ‘in Frankfurt for Frankfurt’ in Kia’s design centre just around the corner from the show site.  Leslie’s aim was to continue Kia’s simplistic design language with a very reduced, driver orientated interior design. Even though the interior is definitely aimed at the driver, the driver and passenger are visually connected through the silver seat material which wraps around the transmission tunnel to make both seats appear as one single unit.  Although the design appears simplistic, there is a lot detail work inside the interior and also on the exterior making the Niro really stand out from the pack of concept cars on show.  Wondering what those poles are doing on the interior? They accomodate the vehicle’s controls – the pole next to the driver features the gears and engine start button, the driver just shifts by twisting the pole.  If the controls are not needed they can be hidden with a cover, similar to a breech lock.  This Niro has a very refreshing attitude – Kia has surprised again with a compact and funky concept which will hopefully be the footprint of something that will go into production soon!


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