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Chicago show: Kia hits the Track’ster

Previewed: Kia has given us a sneak peak of the Track'ster concept ahead of its reveal at the Chicago motor show this week.

Kia reveals ‘ultimate sporting representation’ of its Soul, the two-door Track’ster

Kia logo2 Feb 2012

By MARTON PETTENDY

UPDATED: 6/02/2012KIA has lifted the lid on an aggressive new two-door version of its funky Soul city-crossover, in the shape of the wild Track’ster concept car.

It is not clear whether the Track’ster, seen here in a single artist’s rendering for the first time, is based on the current Soul or whether it previews a more sporting two-door derivative of either the existing model or its successor, which is due soon.

For now, the South Korean maker says the Track’ster “is intended to be the ultimate sporting representation of Kia’s Soul B-segment SUV” and is the creation of its Californian design studio, which also brought us the two-door four-seat Soul’ster convertible ute concept that debuted at the 2009 Detroit show.

Interestingly, although Kia says there are no plans for the Track’ster to enter production, it has revealed that its topless Soul’ster sibling “is currently under final assessment for production”, suggesting that two-door hard-top and soft-top versions of the Soul are on the cards for either the current or next generations.

17 center imageLeft: Official Kia Track'ster rendering.

However, the Track’ster appears far more aggressive than the Soul’ster, which was based on the current Soul five-door, with the single side-on rendering revealing it has an even narrow glass area, massive lower grille opening and deeply chiselled body-side scoops.

GoAuto understands the first actual image of the Track’ster will be released on Monday (February 6), ahead of the concept’s world debut at the Chicago Auto Show two days later on February 8.

Kia says the Track’ster is “envisaged with a 250ps (184kW) petrol engine, suggesting it could employ an even higher output version of the upcoming Veloster Turbo’s direct-injection 1.6-litre GDI turbo-four, which develops 150kW.

The boxy Soul compact car has been a smash-hit in the US, where it was designed and where it attracted about 102,000 buyers last year alone.

In Australia, where an upgraded version with 1.6 and 2.0-litre petrol plus 1.6-litre diesel engines was introduced last November, the Soul found just 431 customers – up 11.4 per cent on 2010 figures.

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