CHICAGO - Kia Motors America (KMA) on Feb. 10 unveiled the Ray Plug-in Hybrid concept during a press conference at the 2010 Chicago Auto Show.
As a plug-in hybrid, Ray is designed to reach driving distances of more than 50 miles using its electric motor on a single charge. The car has a fuel economy rating of more than 202 miles per gallon and a total range of 746 miles.
Kia expressed hope that the introduction will help build momentum for the automaker's alternative fuel and powertrain research program and its sub-brand, coined "EcoDynamics."
Recently, the EcoDynamics sub-brand took a step forward with the introduction of the Kia Borrego Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV), followed by the Forte LPI Hybrid, the gasoline Kia cee'd Hybrid and the twin-turbo diesel Kia Sorento Hybrid.
The Kia Ray concept, a four-seat compact sedan based on the Kia Forte platform, features a prospective plug-in hybrid vehicle configuration. The vehicle is designed with lightweight and recycled materials, as well as hexagonal roof-top solar cells embedded in the glass roof panel that power extra lighting or climate control systems.
The Kia Ray is the fifth vehicle from the Irvine Calif.-based Kia Design Center America (KDCA) to be revealed in the past year.
"It is important to imagine what people will want in the future from a green perspective early in the design process, because people want to reduce their carbon footprint without driving carbon copies," said Peter Schreyer, chief design officer of Kia Motors Corp. "Being green doesn't have to be an obvious statement anymore and the Kia Ray exemplifies a viable blend of modern, eco-minded features for today's environmentally conscious consumers."