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William Maley

Geneva Motor Show: Kia Sportspace Concept: Comments

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When we brought you the teaser shot of Kia's showing for the Geneva Motor Show next month, we thought it was a sedan. But there is more to this concept as Kia has revealed the whole vehicle today. Meet the Sportspace concept.

The Sportspace concept was done at Kia's European design studio in Frankfurt and was designed as a grand tourer "without sacrificing the performance, sustainability and economy that Kia is known for." The overall shape fits in with current Kia models with such details as the narrow tiger-nose grille, simple surfaces, and nice proportions.

"We set out to design a car that is a totally new breed of grand tourer – one for active people who need reasonable cargo space on the weekend, but don't want to compromise moving around in style, comfort and with an element of sportiness," explains Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer Europe.

Source: Kia

Press Release is on Page 2


Kia SPORTSPACE concept to be unveiled at Geneva

(SEOUL) February 17, 2015 – Kia Motors Europe will unveil an innovative new concept, the Kia SPORTSPACE, at the 85th Salon International de l'Automobile in Geneva on 3 March 2015.

Created for long distance driving, the SPORTSPACE has been designed for fast and efficient travel with maximum comfort and minimal stress, in the best grand touring tradition of the weekend getaway.

Designed at Kia's Frankfurt design studio, under the direction of Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer Europe, the SPORTSPACE features a unique and captivating body shape. The car is born out of a commitment to provide stylish and exciting transportation for four which is also spacious and functional, without sacrificing the performance, sustainability and economy that Kia is known for.

Recognisably a Kia due to its signature 'tiger nose' grille, finely judged proportions and simple, clean surfaces, SPORTSPACE has a bold, dynamic shape with real road presence. At the same time, it offers a high level of interior comfort and substantial practical load space.

"We set out to design a car that is a totally new breed of grand tourer – one for active people who need reasonable cargo space on the weekend, but don't want to compromise moving around in style, comfort and with an element of sportiness," explains Gregory Guillaume, Chief Designer Europe.


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WOW, Nice Looking Station Wagon, Reminds me of a knock off of the Cadillac Station wagon. RIP.

 

Clearly still a market for these kinds of auto's.

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I like the design, pretty refreshing. Chances of it getting in US, even if it's built, are remote.

 

Yes, definitely a hint of more curvy Cadillac wagon.

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    • By William Maley
      Kia introduced the third-generation Soul at the LA Auto Show today and we're happy to report that the model still retains the funk.
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      “The Soul has been a massive success since its introduction to the U.S. market, blowing its (now defunct) rivals out of the water and establishing itself as an automotive icon with its fun-loving character and eccentric style,” said Orth Hedrick, executive director of Car Planning and Telematics. “Even with an entirely new generation of competitors now crowding the marketplace, we are confident the all-new Soul will once again prove to be a tough contender given its unparalleled style and impressive level of invigorating technology and customization options.”
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      Design Beyond the Box
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      New exterior design highlights include:
      High-tech front headlight configuration with connecting trim piece accentuates width Slim-design daytime running lights and turn signal indicators Larger front grille with unique two-tone treatment Front fenders add volume to clean and smooth surfaces Roof rack mounting points Three-dimensional wraparound boomerang-shaped taillights C-pillars designed to resemble airplane wings Signature vertical rear window and “Island” stay true to Soul design heritage Distinctive C-pillar garnish features new “Soul” graphic Music has been an overarching theme for Soul since its inception, and it’s no different this round.. For the third generation, designers and engineers turned up the volume on the interior. Drawing inspiration from the “emotional visualization of sound,” the Soul’s interior space is adorned with shapes and textures that reflect acoustic inspired elements to create a full sensory experience.
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      Available sound mood lighting emits soft light from the center door panels and a unique 3D pattern surface on the upper door panels, with the ability to synchronize to the beat of the music playing through the Soul’s audio system Sound mood lighting features a rainbow of customizable colors Available wireless charging1 Available dual auto climate control Soul’s signature tweeter speakers HIGHLIGHT – SOUL’S MOOD LIGHTING SYSTEM
      Since the Kia Soul first arrived on the scene in 2009, it has established a very real and remarkable connection with music. This continues to be a core attribute of the Soul's persona and the volume has been turned up to 11 with a new mood lighting system that tailors the interior ambiance according to a variety of selectable “moods”:
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      Exterior Dimensions:
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      Wider and lower rear liftgate opening improves ease of loading and unloading Easy grip handle on liftgate Dual level cargo board offers flexibility with the ability to accommodate taller items using the lower level setting Larger front door openings as a result of sculpted front door panels The 2020 Soul’s stronger structure benefits from an increased use of Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS), hot stamped components, and structural adhesive. With stronger bones, the 2020 Soul is expected to achieve the highest safety ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and National Traffic Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA).
      Next-Gen Infotainment and Kia Drive Wise Technologies
      Recognizing that one’s car is an integral part of their social life, the 2020 Soul continues to surprise and delight with next-gen infotainment and technology.
      Available 10.25-inch HD color touchscreen2 with split screen function (standard on EX, GT-Line with turbo engine) and rear view monitor3 and parking guidance Android Auto4 and Apple Car Play5 Bluetooth®6 Multi-Connection - two Bluetooth devices can be connected at the same time Available 8-inch Head-Up Display2 Available 640-watt Harman Kardon7 audio system – twice the wattage of current Soul – with an amplifier and 10 speakers including tuned center speaker and subwoofer Like other newly designed Kia models, the all-new Soul offers a suite of available Kia Drive Wise features8 including:
      Forward Collision Avoidance (FCA) / FCA Pedestrian type Lane Keeping Assist (LKA) Lane Changing Assist (LCA) Driver Attention Warning (DAW)9 Blind-spot Collision Warning (BCW) Rear Cross Collision Warning (RCW) Smart Cruise Control (SCC) High Beam Assist (HBA) What Drives You?
      Soul enhances its fun-to-drive personality and versatility with different drivetrain combinations. From the all-new 2019 Forte, Kia’s Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) is now available on the 2020 Soul for those who require efficiency with their zip. Designed and built in-house, the IVT is Kia’s unique version of a continuously variable transmission that provides an engaging driving experience.
      2.0-liter Nu four-cylinder engine + 6-speed manual transmission or Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) 147 horsepower, 132 lb-ft. of torque For those that require even more zip, a turbocharged option is also available: 
      1.6-liter twin-scroll turbocharged I-4 GDI engine + 7-speed dual-clutch transmission 201 horsepower, 195 lb. ft of torque With the Soul’s all-new platform comes a more refined experience behind the wheel and on the road. Engineers designed suspension geometry to help quell noise, vibration and harshness while also improving handling and comfort in a variety of conditions.
      A Soul for Everyone
      The 2020 Soul can be outfitted to convey one’s unique sense of style through a variety of customizable options. Aside from the all-new Soul EV that debuts alongside its gasoline counterpart, the Soul offers even more flexibility according to different lifestyles.
      GT-Line
      Sporty front and rear fascia 18-inch alloy wheels P235/45 R18 tires Unique side sills and front fascia with red accents Integrated fog lights on front grille Gloss black side mirrors “GT-Line” badging Leather-wrapped D-shaped steering wheel and gearshift knob Available 201-HP turbocharged engine Chrome tip center exhaust Larger disc brakes Sport-tuned suspension X-Line  
      Rugged body kit Body cladding Overfenders for chunkier look Offroad-inspired accents Unique 18-inch alloy wheels Roof rail inspired accents Optional two-tone paint Fog lights EX Designer Collection
      18-inch alloy wheels with black spokes LED headlights and fog lights Two-tone roof treatment P235/45 R18 tires ALL-NEW 2020 KIA SOUL EV COMBINES SOUL-FUL VIBE WITH ALL-ELECTRIC BUZZ
      Super Cool and Electric Too Next-generation uber-popular urban runabout again available with battery-only power Powered by a state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-charge is standard equipment1 201-horsepower electric motor with 291 lb.-ft. of torque LOS ANGELES, November 28, 2018 – Today Kia Motors America (KMA) introduced the 2020 Soul, a completely new version of Kia’s beloved, award-winning and unconventional compact utility vehicle. In conjunction with that world-debut, the all-electric, battery-powered Soul EV was also unveiled. Just as quirky, fun-loving and crowd-pleasing, the Soul EV provides the opportunity for lovers of the Soul to drive without ever stopping for gas.
      A Much Better Battery
      The new Soul EV has a new state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery which is expected to mean much less need for daily charging, and with Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-charge2 as standard equipment, battery refills should be brief so road trip fun can happily continue after only a short break.
      The new battery is currently being tested to ascertain precise EPA-estimated range. Results are expected early in 2019 and will be announced at a later date.
      Driving Dynamics – The Soul EV is More Fun Than Ever
      The Soul EV has always provided a bit of a magic carpet ride, whisking along silently with seemingly effortless pull. Now, with 201 horsepower and 291 lb.-ft. of torque (way up from 210 lb.-ft. in the outgoing model), drivers will feel like a virtual Aladdin. Handling and driving dynamics are also much improved, thanks to the addition of independent rear suspension. The new Soul EV also provides plenty of tools for drivers to customize their driving experience and their battery usage, including:
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      The 2020 Soul is all-new with a refreshed exterior that stays true to its boxy origins – a distinctive look beloved by legions of fans. The new Soul EV is built with the same architecture, but imbued with unique styling that provides the car a flair of its own:
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      The Soul EV comes equipped with a long list of state-of-the-art features to help enhance safety, improve the driving experience and provide ease of operation and ownership. Kia engineers and designers have thought of everything. Every Soul EV includes a suite of “Kia Drive Wise” Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems, and a long list of standard and optional equipment, highlights of which are listed below.
      High-tech rotary shifter (shift-by-wire) 10.25-inch color touchscreen6 with rear view monitor7 and parking guidance 6-speaker audio system (AM/FM/SiriusXM)8 with USB input Steering wheel-mounted audio controls Apple CarPlay9 and Android Auto10 Bluetooth11 wireless connectivity with voice recognition 7 airbags12 (dual front advanced air bags, dual front seat-mounted side air bags, side curtain air bags with rollover sensor, driver's side knee air bag) Vehicle Safety Systems13 Antilock braking Traction control Electronic stability control Hill-start assist control Tire pressure monitoring system Pedestrian warning system “Kia Drive Wise” Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS)14 Forward Collision Warning (FCW) Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) Lane Departure Warning (LDW) Lane Keeping Assist (LKA) Driver Attention Warning (DAW)15 Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go Blind Spot Collision Warning (BSW) (available) Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Warning (available) Parking Distance Warning – Reverse only (available) New for Soul EV is a revamped UVO telematics system that allows owners to monitor and control a long list of vehicle operations, including:
      Notifications of battery and charging status Real-time charging station update Scheduled charging Panic notifications – the vehicle will send a notification to the server if the panic alarm is triggered and the system dials 911 emergency services, provides the car position via GPS, and opens a live microphone so that emergency workers can communicate with the vehicle occupants “Send2Car” points of interest (POI) and waypoints — owners will be able to plan a road trip with waypoints and send it to the vehicles’ navigation system
    • By William Maley
      Volkswagen will be trotting out the I.D. Buzz Cargo concept at this week's L.A. Auto Show with a bit of a twist. The concept already made its debut at commercial vehicle show in Germany earlier in the year. But Volkswagen has given the concept a fresh coat of paint and outfitted it to be a support vehicle for VW's I.D. R Pikes Peak electric race car.
      The cargo variant of the Buzz is about four inches longer in overall length when compared to the standard Buzz, allowing for more space to store stuff. The exterior is quite flashy with racing numbers, graphics, and a track outline of the Pikes Peak course. The interior has been fitted with a full set of shelves to store parts and tools; pop-out workbench, and a 230-volt outlet to plug in power tools. Volkswagen swaps out the captain chairs for a bench seat to boost seat capacity to three.
      Power comes from a single electric motor mounted on the rear axle with 201 horsepower. Volkswagen says the production model could be offered with two batteries, either a 48-kWh version for urban deliveries or a 111-kWh version delivering a range of 340 miles on the WLTP cycle.
      Volkswagen says the cargo version of the I.D. Buzz could arrive in Europe in 2022. No word on if it could arrive in the U.S.
      Gallery: Volkswagen I.D. Buzz Cargo Concept
      Source: Volkswagen
      VOLKSWAGEN I.D. BUZZ CARGO CONCEPT MAKES AUTO SHOW DEBUT AT 2018 LOS ANGELES AUTO SHOW
      Spacious electric panel van concept is based on the MEB toolkit Innovative zero-emissions panel van could be launched as early as 2022 340 miles of range on the WLTP cycle with the largest battery available "I.D. Pilot" mode allows full autonomous driving Unique features include: digital cargo system, 230V socket to provide power for workers' tools, and solar roof that can extend the daily range by up to 9.3 miles Vehicle is reimagined in LA as a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak record holder Los Angeles (November 27, 2018) – The original Volkswagen Transporter is the most recognizable light commercial vehicle of all time. With the auto show premiere of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is showing how an electrically powered and completely redeveloped Transporter might change the world of LCVs. Based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB), and a sibling to the I.D. BUZZ concept first shown in Detroit last year, the CARGO could be launched as a production vehicle in Europe as early as 2022.
      Such a vehicle has the potential to revolutionize parcel delivery. Between 2005 and 2015, the global number of parcels delivered grew by 128 percent, due in large part to the revolution in e-commerce and home delivery. In the U.S., delivery trucks account for 7 percent of urban traffic and 17 percent of congestion costs due to wasted hours and fuel. The use of autonomous electric delivery vans has the potential to lower the CO2 footprint of these vehicles, lower operating costs to delivery services (and thus, potentially, to customers), and make the whole process more efficient.
      As the newest member of the I.D. Family—a new generation of fully-connected electric vehicles—CARGO features long range driving capability. Depending on the size of the battery pack, CARGO can achieve ranges between about 200 and 340 miles on the WLTP cycle. If the vehicle covers fairly normal distances in the city on a daily and weekly basis, a lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 48 kWh is recommended. If greater range is needed, the energy capacity can be increased up to 111 kWh.
      Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has combined the battery in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO with a 201-horsepower (150 kW) electric motor, a single-speed transmission, and rear-wheel drive. However, an all-wheel drive system, like the one implemented in the I.D. BUZZ, is possible in the future simply by adding a motor at the front of the vehicle. The flow of high-voltage energy between the motor and the battery is controlled by the power electronics. Direct current (DC) stored in the battery is converted into alternating current (AC). A DC/DC converter supplies the on-board electronics with 12 volts. The vehicle’s top speed is electronically limited to 99 mph.
      The 111kWh battery in the CARGO can be charged to 80 percent capacity in 30 minutes with a 150 kW DC fastcharger. The battery system has also been prepared for inductive charging. To charge, the van is positioned over a charging platewhile parking. As soon as the control unit of the charging plate in the pavement has set up a communications channel with the vehicle, contactless energy can be transferred through an electromagnetic field generated between two coils (one in the floor of the parking space and one in the vehicle).
      Exterior 
      The design of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is defined by the interplay of familiar elements of the original Transporter’s DNAwith futuristic elements. The front end, in particular, with a characteristic "V" and a typically friendly "face" clearly reflects the old car, yetis a completely new interpretation. Instead of the round headlights of the original model, the CARGO has interactive LED systems which not only illuminate the road, but also communicate interactively with pedestrians. Another defining feature of the design is the short front overhang. The transporter is 198.7 in long, 77.8 in wide and 77.3 in tall, with a wheelbase of 129.9 inches. Since the rear overhang was extended by about 4 inches, the cargo version of the I.D. BUZZ is significantly longer than the vehicle shown in Detroit. The CARGO concept has a payload (maximum load) of 1,760 pounds.
      Outside, the CARGO concept is differentiated from the I.D. BUZZ by a new solar roof, wide-opening rear doors and a new rear bumper. The solar roof features a photovoltaic system that generates so much energy that it is able to extend the range of the vehicle by up to 9.3 miles a day. With a view towards optimizing cargo space via a shelving system, there is no sliding door on the driver’s side, typical of LCVs. The front doors and sliding door open electrically. Unlocking the vehicle from the outside is activated via a sensor. The CARGO recognizes authorized persons via a digital key which is sent to the van from a smartphone. Instead of the 22-inch wheels of the Detroit concept vehicle, new 20-inch wheels are used with 235/55 tires.
      The I.D. BUZZ CARGO shown in Los Angeles has been reimagined from the version first shown in Hannover earlier this year. As a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak record holder, its livery mimics the R’s colors and the design includes the course map for the prestigious race.
      Interior 
      Like all members of the I.D. Family, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is characterized by an exceptionally large interior, thanks to the packaging advantages brought by the MEB architecture. The battery is integrated into the vehicle floor, lowering the vehicle's center of gravity and improving handling significantly. The transporter's axles have been shifted outwards, because no space is required for a combustion engine at the front, and the compact electric motor is mounted on the rear axle, creating up to 7 cubic feet of extra space in the front of the vehicle.
      The interior has been tailored for commercial use, down to the smallest detail. Instead of two single seats in the front, the concept vehicle is equipped with a driver's seat and a double bench-seat on the front passenger side. The middle seat can be folded down to open up a workspacewhere the driver can use an integrated laptop. In the automated "I.D. Pilot" mode,this can even be done on the move. The driver activates the autonomous mode by simply pushing on the steering wheel for a few seconds, which then retracts into the instrument panel. Then the driver's seat can be turned 15 degrees to the right, enabling the on-board computer to be operated from the ideal ergonomic position.
      In driving mode, the main controls are located on the steering wheel and key information is projected in 3D via an Augmented Reality (AR) head-up display. Rear view mirrors become a thing of the past, with cameras projecting images onto small screens in the cab, and other information such as infotainment and climate control functions is displayed on a tablet.
      The cargo compartment begins behind the first seat row and a bulkhead. In cooperation with the German equipment specialist Sortimo, a shelving system with sensors has been developed for the cargo area. This shelving system is connected to the vehicle via a customer-specific function control unit and a CAN interface. The data is transferred by WLAN to tablets in the cargo space and cockpit. By means of a mobile radio network, the functional control unit might communicate with a company’s job or order-management system, theoretically making it possible to track all articles on the shelves. This enables precise online management of the type and quantity of freight and equipment in this futuristic Transporter. Further data is provided by the ConnectedVan fleet management system. In its LA role as a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak, the vehicle is outfitted with a workbench and parts for the I.D. R.
      During autonomous driving it is possible to accept, schedule, and process orders from the driver's workplace. Thanks to the connected shelving system's data it is also possible to perform order-related stock checks while on the move. It is also possible to perform optimum, flexible route planning,taking customer appointments into account. Thanks to the Safety Check function, any unsecured tools or missing parts are indicated before the start of the journey. Any components taken out get automatically registered, working times recorded and invoices issued. An 8.6-square-footlight integrated in the roof makes access to the items even easier and quicker.
      Driving up to loading ramps is made easier by the wide-opening, symmetrical rear doors. When they are opened, a workbench can be folded out. Even high-performance work tools can be supplied with power there from 230V electrical sockets (16A) via the battery. This has been implemented to ensure that the I.D.BUZZ CARGO is not just a means of transportation, but also a standalone mobile workshop.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Volkswagen will be trotting out the I.D. Buzz Cargo concept at this week's L.A. Auto Show with a bit of a twist. The concept already made its debut at commercial vehicle show in Germany earlier in the year. But Volkswagen has given the concept a fresh coat of paint and outfitted it to be a support vehicle for VW's I.D. R Pikes Peak electric race car.
      The cargo variant of the Buzz is about four inches longer in overall length when compared to the standard Buzz, allowing for more space to store stuff. The exterior is quite flashy with racing numbers, graphics, and a track outline of the Pikes Peak course. The interior has been fitted with a full set of shelves to store parts and tools; pop-out workbench, and a 230-volt outlet to plug in power tools. Volkswagen swaps out the captain chairs for a bench seat to boost seat capacity to three.
      Power comes from a single electric motor mounted on the rear axle with 201 horsepower. Volkswagen says the production model could be offered with two batteries, either a 48-kWh version for urban deliveries or a 111-kWh version delivering a range of 340 miles on the WLTP cycle.
      Volkswagen says the cargo version of the I.D. Buzz could arrive in Europe in 2022. No word on if it could arrive in the U.S.
      Gallery: Volkswagen I.D. Buzz Cargo Concept
      Source: Volkswagen
      VOLKSWAGEN I.D. BUZZ CARGO CONCEPT MAKES AUTO SHOW DEBUT AT 2018 LOS ANGELES AUTO SHOW
      Spacious electric panel van concept is based on the MEB toolkit Innovative zero-emissions panel van could be launched as early as 2022 340 miles of range on the WLTP cycle with the largest battery available "I.D. Pilot" mode allows full autonomous driving Unique features include: digital cargo system, 230V socket to provide power for workers' tools, and solar roof that can extend the daily range by up to 9.3 miles Vehicle is reimagined in LA as a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak record holder Los Angeles (November 27, 2018) – The original Volkswagen Transporter is the most recognizable light commercial vehicle of all time. With the auto show premiere of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is showing how an electrically powered and completely redeveloped Transporter might change the world of LCVs. Based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB), and a sibling to the I.D. BUZZ concept first shown in Detroit last year, the CARGO could be launched as a production vehicle in Europe as early as 2022.
      Such a vehicle has the potential to revolutionize parcel delivery. Between 2005 and 2015, the global number of parcels delivered grew by 128 percent, due in large part to the revolution in e-commerce and home delivery. In the U.S., delivery trucks account for 7 percent of urban traffic and 17 percent of congestion costs due to wasted hours and fuel. The use of autonomous electric delivery vans has the potential to lower the CO2 footprint of these vehicles, lower operating costs to delivery services (and thus, potentially, to customers), and make the whole process more efficient.
      As the newest member of the I.D. Family—a new generation of fully-connected electric vehicles—CARGO features long range driving capability. Depending on the size of the battery pack, CARGO can achieve ranges between about 200 and 340 miles on the WLTP cycle. If the vehicle covers fairly normal distances in the city on a daily and weekly basis, a lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 48 kWh is recommended. If greater range is needed, the energy capacity can be increased up to 111 kWh.
      Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has combined the battery in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO with a 201-horsepower (150 kW) electric motor, a single-speed transmission, and rear-wheel drive. However, an all-wheel drive system, like the one implemented in the I.D. BUZZ, is possible in the future simply by adding a motor at the front of the vehicle. The flow of high-voltage energy between the motor and the battery is controlled by the power electronics. Direct current (DC) stored in the battery is converted into alternating current (AC). A DC/DC converter supplies the on-board electronics with 12 volts. The vehicle’s top speed is electronically limited to 99 mph.
      The 111kWh battery in the CARGO can be charged to 80 percent capacity in 30 minutes with a 150 kW DC fastcharger. The battery system has also been prepared for inductive charging. To charge, the van is positioned over a charging platewhile parking. As soon as the control unit of the charging plate in the pavement has set up a communications channel with the vehicle, contactless energy can be transferred through an electromagnetic field generated between two coils (one in the floor of the parking space and one in the vehicle).
      Exterior 
      The design of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is defined by the interplay of familiar elements of the original Transporter’s DNAwith futuristic elements. The front end, in particular, with a characteristic "V" and a typically friendly "face" clearly reflects the old car, yetis a completely new interpretation. Instead of the round headlights of the original model, the CARGO has interactive LED systems which not only illuminate the road, but also communicate interactively with pedestrians. Another defining feature of the design is the short front overhang. The transporter is 198.7 in long, 77.8 in wide and 77.3 in tall, with a wheelbase of 129.9 inches. Since the rear overhang was extended by about 4 inches, the cargo version of the I.D. BUZZ is significantly longer than the vehicle shown in Detroit. The CARGO concept has a payload (maximum load) of 1,760 pounds.
      Outside, the CARGO concept is differentiated from the I.D. BUZZ by a new solar roof, wide-opening rear doors and a new rear bumper. The solar roof features a photovoltaic system that generates so much energy that it is able to extend the range of the vehicle by up to 9.3 miles a day. With a view towards optimizing cargo space via a shelving system, there is no sliding door on the driver’s side, typical of LCVs. The front doors and sliding door open electrically. Unlocking the vehicle from the outside is activated via a sensor. The CARGO recognizes authorized persons via a digital key which is sent to the van from a smartphone. Instead of the 22-inch wheels of the Detroit concept vehicle, new 20-inch wheels are used with 235/55 tires.
      The I.D. BUZZ CARGO shown in Los Angeles has been reimagined from the version first shown in Hannover earlier this year. As a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak record holder, its livery mimics the R’s colors and the design includes the course map for the prestigious race.
      Interior 
      Like all members of the I.D. Family, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is characterized by an exceptionally large interior, thanks to the packaging advantages brought by the MEB architecture. The battery is integrated into the vehicle floor, lowering the vehicle's center of gravity and improving handling significantly. The transporter's axles have been shifted outwards, because no space is required for a combustion engine at the front, and the compact electric motor is mounted on the rear axle, creating up to 7 cubic feet of extra space in the front of the vehicle.
      The interior has been tailored for commercial use, down to the smallest detail. Instead of two single seats in the front, the concept vehicle is equipped with a driver's seat and a double bench-seat on the front passenger side. The middle seat can be folded down to open up a workspacewhere the driver can use an integrated laptop. In the automated "I.D. Pilot" mode,this can even be done on the move. The driver activates the autonomous mode by simply pushing on the steering wheel for a few seconds, which then retracts into the instrument panel. Then the driver's seat can be turned 15 degrees to the right, enabling the on-board computer to be operated from the ideal ergonomic position.
      In driving mode, the main controls are located on the steering wheel and key information is projected in 3D via an Augmented Reality (AR) head-up display. Rear view mirrors become a thing of the past, with cameras projecting images onto small screens in the cab, and other information such as infotainment and climate control functions is displayed on a tablet.
      The cargo compartment begins behind the first seat row and a bulkhead. In cooperation with the German equipment specialist Sortimo, a shelving system with sensors has been developed for the cargo area. This shelving system is connected to the vehicle via a customer-specific function control unit and a CAN interface. The data is transferred by WLAN to tablets in the cargo space and cockpit. By means of a mobile radio network, the functional control unit might communicate with a company’s job or order-management system, theoretically making it possible to track all articles on the shelves. This enables precise online management of the type and quantity of freight and equipment in this futuristic Transporter. Further data is provided by the ConnectedVan fleet management system. In its LA role as a support vehicle for the I.D. R Pikes Peak, the vehicle is outfitted with a workbench and parts for the I.D. R.
      During autonomous driving it is possible to accept, schedule, and process orders from the driver's workplace. Thanks to the connected shelving system's data it is also possible to perform order-related stock checks while on the move. It is also possible to perform optimum, flexible route planning,taking customer appointments into account. Thanks to the Safety Check function, any unsecured tools or missing parts are indicated before the start of the journey. Any components taken out get automatically registered, working times recorded and invoices issued. An 8.6-square-footlight integrated in the roof makes access to the items even easier and quicker.
      Driving up to loading ramps is made easier by the wide-opening, symmetrical rear doors. When they are opened, a workbench can be folded out. Even high-performance work tools can be supplied with power there from 230V electrical sockets (16A) via the battery. This has been implemented to ensure that the I.D.BUZZ CARGO is not just a means of transportation, but also a standalone mobile workshop.
    • By William Maley
      I happen to be a big fan of the Kia Soul. Its daring looks, spacious interior, and overall value make it an interesting option in the compact class. It seems many others would agree as the Soul is one of Kia’s best selling models. To help keep it up there, Kia has introduced a new turbo engine for the top-line Exclaim (!) model along with minor changes for 2017. Let's see how these changes affect the Soul.
      Aside from the turbo engine, Kia made some design tweaks to the Exclaim to have it stand out from other Soul trims. This includes a new front bumper, red accents, 18-inch alloy wheels, a twin-tip exhaust, and exclusive colors like this copper color seen here. The little changes really make the Soul stand out even further than before. Moving on to the turbo engine, it is a 1.6L four-cylinder packing 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. This is only paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. If you really want a manual with your turbo-four, Kia will gladly sell you a Forte5 SX which features the same engine. There is a brief moment of turbo lag when you step on the accelerator, but the engine comes into its own after this with power building smoothly. There are no issues with getting up to speed when merging or making a pass. The dual-clutch transmission is a bit of a mixed bag. In stop-and-go traffic, the transmission exhibits some jerkiness and lazy shifts. We also noticed the transmission was slow to respond in terms of downshifting, making us think the programming for this transmission was focused on fuel economy. At higher speeds, the transmission is better with rapid and smooth shifts. The turbo engine has the highest fuel economy fuel economy figures in the Soul lineup with an EPA rating of 26 City/31 Highway/28 Combined. We saw an average of 25.3 mpg during our week in mostly city driving, which is slightly disappointing. With the turbo engine and racy looks, you might think that this particular Soul is fun to drive. Sorry to burst your bubble, but that is not the case. Out on a winding road, the Soul is competent with minimal body roll and okay steering. This would be ok if it weren’t for the sporty image that is being portrayed by the exterior. We do wish that Kia had made some changes to the suspension to make it slightly sportier.  The upside to not messing with the Soul’s suspension is it mostly retains the smooth and comfortable ride of other models. Mostly is the keyword as the 18-inch wheels do introduce some harshness to the Soul’s ride. There is a fair amount of wind and road noise, most of this due to the Soul’s boxy shape. The Soul’s interior is still as sharp looking as it first was when the current model was launched in 2013. Little touches such as the uniquely styled air vents and orange accent stitching give the Soul a bit of whimsy. The extensive use of soft-touch materials gives off an aura of quality. Driver and passenger get power seats which make finding a comfortable position very easy. Those sitting in the back will appreciate the large amount of head and legroom, due to the Soul’s boxy shape. Our test Soul came with optional Technology Package that includes an 8-inch touchscreen with Kia’s UVO infotainment system and navigation. It is beginning to show its age in terms of the graphics, but it is still one of the most intuitive systems on sale today. A simple layout and redundant physical buttons make it breeze to use. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration is an added bonus. The Exclaim begins at $22,650 and comes well equipped. Standard features include automatic climate control, 7-inch touchscreen with UVO, Bluetooth, leather and cloth wrapped seats, push-button start with proximity key, and automatic headlights. Opt for the technology to get the 8-inch system, blind spot monitoring with rear-cross traffic alert, heated seats and steering wheel, and power folding mirrors. For only $26,995, you get a nicely equipped vehicle. Our test vehicle is slightly more expensive at $27,620 due to an optional panoramic sunroof which we would skip. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Soul, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Kia
      Model: Soul
      Trim: ! (Exclaim)
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.6L GDI Four-Cylinder 
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Seven-Speed Dual-Clutch Automatic
      Horsepower @ RPM: 201 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 195 @ 1,500 - 4,500
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 26/31/28
      Curb Weight: 3,232 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Gwangju, South Korea
      Base Price: $22,650
      As Tested Price: $27,620 (Includes $850.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Technology Package - $3,000.00
      Panoramic Sunroof - $1,000.00
      Carpeted Floor Mars - $120.00

      View full article
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