• Revised Picanto and Rio announced, both with striking re-designs for their ‘GT-Line’ models. The Picanto was made available with ‘Automated Manual Transmission’ increasing efficiency, whilst the Rio was made available with 48-volt mild-hybrid technology
  • Kia awarded ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ at the Car Dealer Power Awards


  • Kia scores 9.4 out of ten in the NFDA survey, placing first overall in terms of how they supported their dealer network throughout the COVID-19 pandemic


  • Kia recorded best ever July as customers return to showrooms, selling 9,110 cars
  • Double win for Kia at the first What Car? Electric Car Awards, with the e-Niro winning ‘Best Electric Small SUV’ and the Niro PHEV winning ‘Best Hybrid Small SUV’
  • All-New Sorento goes on sale in the UK
  • e-Niro shines in Kia’s record August sales, making up 533 out of the 1,417 Niro models sold


  • All-New Sorento Hybrid enters production
  • Niro family dominates DieselCar and EcoCar Top 50 Awards, winning ‘Best Hybrid’, ‘Best Plug-In Hybrid’ and ‘Best Medium Electric Car’
  • MyKia app launched giving users the ability to book a service, check manuals and videos, find your vehicle location and much more
  • Kia and Rafa Nadal extend partnership for a further five years


  • UVO Connect ‘Phase II’ revealed, offering more accurate navigation, augmented-reality Last Mile Navigation, and User Profile Transfer functionality


  • Kia Dealers fully reopen after COVID-19 shutdown with social distancing in place


  • Sorento tops Auto Express Driver Power survey
  • Soul EV and Telluride win ‘World Urban Car’ and ‘World Car of the Year’ at the World Car Awards
  • Record sales of electrified cars in Q1 for KME, accounting for 18.9 per cent of all sales in the first quarter


  • All-New Sorento revealed, which will accommodate both Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid powertrains for the first time
  • Kia wins ‘Red Dot’ ‘Product Design’ award for the XCeed, the fourth member of the Ceed family to receive a Red Dot prize


  • Kia beats almost all competition in ‘Crossover of the Year’ at the Car of the Year awards with the e-Niro winning, the XCeed finishing in second and the Soul EV coming home in fourth.
  • e-Niro wins ‘New Car of the Year’ award and Kia wins ‘Franchise Partner of the Year’ at the AM Awards
  • Kia and Hyundai develop world’s first ICT connected shift system


  • Kia marks another record year in 2019, selling 97,323 cars – the Sportage remaining the most popular model having delivered 34,500 vehicles
  • ‘Plan S’ announced – Kia’s plan to spearhead transition to All-Electric vehicles, and be offering 11 EVs by 2025
  • Double win at What Car? Car of the Year Awards for the Picanto and e-Niro
  • Kia Motors tops half a million sales in Europe



  • Kia e-Niro wins Carbuyer’s ‘Best Electric Car’ Award and Soul EV wins DrivingElectric’s ‘Best Medium Electric Car’ Award


  • Double win at Scottish Car of the Year Awards for the Sportage and ProCeed
  • Kia e-Niro and Optima Sportswagon take home awards at the Professional Driver Magazine Car of the Year Awards


  • Kia Picanto awarded Sunday Times ‘Best Value Car of the Year’
  • e-Niro wins ‘Best Electric Car’ at the Business Car Awards and the Eco Award from CarWow


  • Kia ranked top in NFDA Survey again with a score of 9.1 out of ten
  • Kia partners with League of Legends European Championship Finals
  • Kia Motors invests in IONITY, a collaboration between BMW, Daimler AG, Ford and Volkswagen committed to expanding the network of high-speed chargers along major European highways


  • Kia records best ever half year sales performance, reaching 53,232 new cars delivered to customers by the end of June
  • Kia e-Niro wins ‘Affordable Electric Car of the Year’ at Auto Express New Car Awards
  • Kia wins ‘Car Maker of the Year’ at Motor Trader Industry Awards
  • Kia marks 15 years of collaboration with Rafa Nadal
  • Kia and Surrey County Cricket Club extend partnership to 2024
  • Kia Stinger ‘GT420’ revealed, a custom made track-car with 420bhp specifically for track use


  • A new body style for the Ceed family, the All-New Kia XCeed revealed


  • Kia wins NFDA ‘Manufacturer of the Year’
  • Kia hits new May record sales, selling 7,279 vehicles


  • Kia sets a record sales quarter in the UK, selling 29,954 cars


  • Kia showcases all-electric concept car ‘Imagine by Kia’ at Geneva Motor Show
  • Triple win at Red Dot Awards with the Ceed, Ceed Sportswagon and the Proceed winning best Car Design.


  • Kia launches new competition for UK Women’s Cricket Clubs: the Kia Summer Smash
  • Kia wins Award for best Fleet Dealer Network for new vehicle sales in the ExpertEye awards


  • Kia sets another record year for sales, having delivered 95,751 vehicles in 2018
  • Kia delivers its one millionth car, a Sportage ‘GT-Line’, in the UK
  • Kia Motors Europe recorded its tenth consecutive year of growth with sales more than doubling over the last ten years
  • e-Niro wins the coveted ‘Car of the Year’ at What Car? Awards, making it the first electric car and car from a Korean brand to win the award
  • All three of the Ceed family models win at the ‘iF Design Awards’



  • Stinger awarded ‘Sports Saloon of the Year’ by Evo Magazine


  • All-New Kia Soul EV debuts in Los Angeles
  • Kia and Hyundai enter partnership with Vodafone to provide customers with a fully-connected in-car infotainment and connected car service
  • e-Niro named ‘Electric Car of the Year’ at the DrivingElectric Awards


  • Sportage in the UK turns 25 years old, and Sorento arrived in the UK 15 years ago
  • Kia awarded ‘OEM of the Year’ at the Automotive Global Awards
  • Stinger wins ‘Executive Car of the Year’ and Sportage wins ‘Used Car of the Year’ at Scottish Car of the Year Awards


  • Kia tops NFDA survey for a second summer running
  • All-New Kia ProCeed shooting brake revealed, with a 594-litre luggage capacity
  • Kia Motors announced as official partner with UEFA Europa League until 2021
  • Kia sets a new sales record in September of 16,299 vehicles sold


  • Kia reveals all-electric e-Niro at the Busan International Motor Show, with a 450 kilometre range and a zero-emissions powertrain
  • Kia wins Car Dealer Power ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ for the third successive year
  • Kia named ‘Company of the Last 30 Years’ at Auto Express New Car Awards


  • Kia Niro wins ‘Best Hybrid’ in DieselCar and EcoCar top 50
  • Kia extends partnership with England and Wales Cricket Board for two years, becoming official car partner
  • Stinger wins ‘Game Changer’ award at Autocar Awards


  • Kia Stinger, Stonic and Picano win Red Dot awards for design, bringing the brands total wins to 21 awards since 2009


  • Kia at 2018 Geneva International Motor Show
  • Kia Motors celebrates five million cumulative sales of its global best-selling Kia Sportage compact SUV
  • Kia Motors manufactures its three millionth car in Europe since production began in Žilina, Slovakia in 2006.


  • Kia Motors wins three prestigious 2018 ‘iF design’ Awards for the Picanto, Stonic and Stinger
  • The third-generation Kia Ceed revealed with updated name and ‘level two autonomy’


  • Kia Stinger wins ‘Best Performance Car’ in the UK Car of the Year Awards 2018
  • Kia Motors (UK) set new sales record for sixth consecutive year



  • Kia Leads World Car Of The Year Nominations
  • The All-New Kia Stinger launches in the UK
  • Kia Motors Corporation renovates Healthcare centre in Uganda


  • The All- New Kia Stonic launches in the UK
  • Kia Motors hands over an All-New Stinger to Rafael Nadal


  • Kia at 2017 Frankfurt International Motor Show
  • Kia Motors (UK) Limited has topped the summer survey of dealer attitudes conducted by the NFDA
  • Kia Extends Partnership With England Women’s Cricket


  • Kia Motors (Uk) Ltd Proud To Be Title Sponsor Of Kia Super League For Second Year
  • Kia Motors Proud To Sponsor Fifa Interactive World Cup Grand Final 2017 In London
  • Kia Signs New UEFA Europa League Sponsorship Deal


  • Kia Wins Car Dealer Power Manufacturer Award For Second Successive Year


  • D. Power’s 2017 Initial Quality Study (IQS) today recognised Kia Motors as the highest-ranking nameplate in the United States for the second year in a row.


  • Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia Produces One Millionth Sorento in the U.S.


  • Third-generation Kia Picanto launches in the UK
  • Kia Motors announce plans to build manufacturing plant in India


  • Kia Motors (UK) Ltd. support Surrey County Cricket captain Gareth Batty in his testimonial year
  • Kia and the Childrens Trust launch ‘The Power of Wheels’ partnership
  • Kia at 2017 Geneva International Motor Show


  • Kia Motors (UK) Ltd. and Surrey County Cricket Club extend sponsorship til 2020


  • 2018 Kia Stinger makes world debut at Northern American International Auto Show
  • Kia Stinger receives EyesOn Design award for Production Car Design Excellence
  • Fourth-generation Kia Rio launched in the UK



  • Kia marks the tenth anniversary of European production in Slovakia
  • Kia Niro sets Guinness World Records™ title for Lowest Fuel Consumption by a Hybrid Vehicle


  • Kia Approved wins Car Dealer’s ‘Manufacturers Used Car Scheme’ for a third time


  • Kia Motors rises to 69th in Interbrand’s Best Global Brands Report 2016


  • Kia at the 2016 Paris Motor Show
  • Kia unveils its biggest European dealership - in London
  • Kia officially opens Mexico production facility

  • Kia expands green space around production sites
  • Mobile app for Optima -  awarded at Red Dot Design

  • Kia Optima and Sedona earn Autopacific's 2016 Ideal Vehicle Awards
  • Kia reduces environmental impace of vehicle production
  • Kia Motors returns as Official Sponsor of Telemundo's web series 'El Maestro' featuring Latin Grammy winner Luis Enrique
  • 2017 Kia Sorento achieves top safety pick plus rating form the Insurance Institute for highway safety
  • Kia Motors Mexico celebrates first-year anniversary and announces hybrid model for local market

  • Kia Motors ranked number one in the auto industry for Initial Quality by J.D. Power
  • Kia Motors recognised as one of the highest quality brands in the US auto industry by Strategic Vision
  • Kia brings fans closer to the UEFA 2016 with five-a-side tournament and new social media campaign
  • Kia Motors ranks highest among all popular brands in 2016 AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Awards
  • Kia Optima and Soul named among The Best Family Cars Of 2016 by Parents Magazine and

  • Kia Motors backs creation of community auto mechanic training centres in Ethiopia and Kenya
  • Kia hands over vehicle fleet for UEFA Euro 2016

  • Kia Motors and Total renew partnership
  • 2017 Kia Sportage receives top safety pick plus rating from the Insurance Institute for highway safety
  • Kia Motors returns to Mom 2.0 Summit for second straight year

  • March
  • Kia Motors reveals three new models for Europe at the 2016 Geneva International Motor Show
  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay for latest Kia Models
  • All-new 2017 Cadenza takes the stage at the New York International Motor Show
  • Kia Motors produces two millionth vehicle in the US

  • February
  • The new Mohave launched
  • Kia Motors America announces pricing for the all-new 2017 Sportage
  • Kia Optima Sportswagon world debut
  • Kia to unveil Optima Plug-in Hybrid, the Next Step in its 'green' car revolution
  • All new Kia Optima Hybrid unveiled at Chicago Auto Show
  • All 2017 Niro Hybrid Utility Vehicle arrives in the Windy City for global debut at Chicago Auto Show

  • January
  • All-new K7 launched
  • Participated in 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES)
  • Participated in 2016 North American International Auto Show
  • Official Support for 2016 Australian Open
  • CoveDesign Awards for all-new Kia Sportage and Optima


  • Five-star safety ratings for all-new Kia Optima and Sportage
  • Kia takes first place in Auto Bild magazine’s Quality Report
  • Kia Motors granted Nevada autonomous driving licence
  • Three brands (Sorento and K5, etc) – Received 2015 Good Design Award
  • 2nd Release of X-Car Series – Mystique
  • Official Website of Kia Motors Corporation – Received 2015 Web Award Korea Grand Prize
  • The New K3 launched
  • K5 Hybrid launched

  • Kia Sorento wins coveted Public Car of the Year title at Middle East Car of the Year Awards
  • Kia celebrates the spirit of the American road trip at 2015 SEMA Show
  • Kia Motors previews next-generation Cadenza
  • 2016 Kia Optima earns Kelley Blue Book’s Best Buy Award

  • Kia Announces Fifth Consecutive Monthly Sales Record
  • Kia Motors continues Sorento marketing campaign with expanded ‘NBC Sunday Night Football’ partnership
  • Kia Motors America Expands Soul EV Availability to Four Additional States
  • Kia Motors America Announces Pricing Of All-New 2016 Optima
  • Kia Soul Wins Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year Award

  • Russian Branch - Hit accumulated sales records of 1 million units
  • Super Racer Enzy, a racing animation, premiered at cinemas nationwide
  • Released Sportage, The SUV
  • Joined 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show
  • Kia unveils all-new Sportage and Optima at 2015 Frankfurt International Motor Show
  • Global debut for all-new Kia Sportage at Frankfurt Motor Show (with video)
  • Kia launches stylish new ‘Rhythm in Basic’ brand collection

  • Launched 2016 Sorento
  • Launched morning sports
  • Mobile Web for All New Sorento & Soul EV – Awarded at Red Dot Design
  • Official Sponsor of the 20th PIFF Pusan International Film Festival
  • Kia Cadenza earns AutoPacific’s 2015 Ideal Vehicle Award in Large Car category

  • Launched New K5
  • Kia K900 (Quoris) sets record-high score in AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Awards
  • 2015 Kia Sedona (Grand Carnival) receives J.D. Power APEAL award
  • Kia Motors posts global sales of 230,227 vehicles in July

  • Transfer Fund 'k7 doneisyeon'
  • RV Camping Zone operations inside the exhibition
  • Kia Motors vehicle exports from Korea to surpass 15 million units in June
  • Kia Motors earns best-ever ranking in 2015 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study
  • Kia Motors holds official brand launch ceremony in Mexico

  • Hosted Brand experience event 'Surprise Weekend'
  • Hosted Korea Ladies Professional Glof Association 29th
  • Hosted KIAREDMEMBERS 'Palpitating Driving class' 

  • Launched The new 2015 Sportage
  • Sedona (Grand Carnival) named to Ward’s 10 Best Interiors list
  • All-new Optima(K5) makes debut and launched the new Quoris(K9) at the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition 2015
  • 2016 all-new Sorento CUV receives NHTSA 5 Star rating

  • 'Morning' small car brand power No.1 in the Korea Brand Power Index, KMAC
  • Second consecutive sponsorship of Copa America Chile 2015
  • Became the official sponsor of the KBO league in automotive sector
  • Launched '2016 all-new Sedona'
  • Soul EV and all-new Sorento, Double win for Kia in the 2015 Red Dot design awards

  • February
  • Received 2015 iF Award for Sorento

  • Became the official sponsor of the Australia Open Tennis Championships 2015
  • Reported production of over 1 million units of the Kia Soul at the Gwangju Plant
  • Launched The New Morning
  • Launched Kia Red Members, Kia's membership brand


  • Launched the Forte 2015
  • Launched The New Rio
  • Recertified as a Customer Focused Company

  • Launched The New K9
  • Received 2014 Korea Color Award for the all new Sedona and all new Sorento
  • Opened Kia's corporate culture communication website
  • Assisted the 10,000th person in need of transportation

  • Ranked 74th in Interbrand's Best Global Brands rankings
  • Launched a smartphone app for roadside assistance
  • Ran Carnation, an online donation campaign
  • Unveiled the Taste of Kia

  • Officially sponsored the 2014 Busan International Film Festival
  • Ran RE:Design, a global brand campaign
  • Hosted an amateur tennis tournament in celebration of Kia Korea Open

  • Launched the All New Sorento
  • Opened a middle school in Malawi, Africa
  • Received two awards for its sustainability report for 2014
  • Officially sponsored the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup

  • July
  • Received the Visiono Award in the US for 2014 MOVE, Kia's sustainability report
  • Ranked highest in the APEAL study

  • June
  • The all-new Sedona is launched

  • The Soul EV is launched

  • The Soul EV becomes the first in history to be given Underwriters Laboratory's environmental validation


  • Kia’s first hot-hatch, the pro_cee’d GT, is unveiled at Geneva
  • An urban crossover concept – provo – also debuts at Geneva and points to future B-segment plans
  • The new Carens goes on sale in the UK in May – all versions have seven seats


  • The second-generation cee’d and cee’d Sportswagon are the stars of Kia’s Geneva show stand
  • The flagship Quoris (K9) saloon is unveiled – it has rear-wheel drive, V6 power and an in-house eight-speed auto gearbox
  • Work starts on Kia’s third Chinese production plant to take capacity in China up to 730,000 a year
  • A new Carens and pro_cee’d debut in Paris
  • A left-hand-drive-only Optima hybrid is launched in Europe
  • The new Sorento goes on sale after its Paris debut


  • KV-7, a Californian design study for a stylish seven-seat MPV with gull-wing rear doors and pillar-less sides, wows the Detroit show
  • The second-generation Picanto, available with three as well as five doors for the first time, is unveiled at Geneva
  • A sleeker Rio supermini also appears at Geneva. The range includes an 88.3mpg, 85g/km 1.1-litre diesel – the world’s lowest for a non-alternative powertrain vehicle
  • Kia announces plans for a 109bhp turbo version of its three-cylinder Kappa petrol engine
  • Kia joins the Clean Energy Partnership to promote fuel-cell vehicles
  • The Naimo electric concept car is the star of Kia’s Seoul show display
  • Engine production at Žilina reaches one million in less than five years in May
  • The eye-catching Kia GT rear-drive coupé concept debuts at Frankfurt


  • Seven-year warranty is now standard on every new Kia model as of New Year’s Day
  • The Ray plug-in electric city car, designed in Kia’s Californian studios, is revealed at Chicago
  • Kia makes its American motorsport debut with two Forte Koups at Daytona.
  • The stylish new Sportage makes its debut at Geneva alongside a 98g/km version of the cee’d
  • The style barrage continues with the debut of the new Optima at New York.
  • The diminutive Kia POP electric concept is rolled out at Paris
  • Soul Flex, Kia’s first flex-fuel car, is unveiled for the Brazilian market in Sao Paulo
  • An Optima hybrid for the US market makes its debut in Los Angeles.
  • Another sales record for Kia in the UK – 56,114


  • The Kia Soul’ster open-air concept car is revealed at a freezing Detroit.
  • Kia reports record global sales of more than 1.3 million in 2008
  • Kia redefines the mini-MPV market with the stylish No.3 concept at Geneva – the car that is to become the Venga
  • Kia introduces its EcoDynamics environmental sub-brand in March and announces an LPI hybrid version of the Forte small saloon for Korea
  • A new Sorento, now featuring monocoque construction instead of a ladder frame, debuts at the Seoul show
  • The Venga debuts at Frankfurt alongside the restyled cee’d
  • Kia takes the wraps off the Cadenza mid-sized saloon
  • The first US-built Sorento rolls off the line at the company’s Georgia plant
  • Kia announces its first in-house direct-injection (GDI) engine, a 2.4-litre unit from the Theta II family
  • 2009 sales of 50,636 were yet another record for Kia UK


  • Borrego, a large SUV sold as the Mohave in some markets, breaks cover at Detroit
  • Three Soul concept cars dominate Kia’s Geneva show stand. There are also two eco_cee’d models, giving clues to the company’s future EcoDynamics strategy
  • The stunning Kia KOUP concept, from the company’s Californian design studios, debuts at the New York show
  • Kia’s new US headquarters and design centre opens in Irvine, California, in June
  • The Soul is unveiled at Paris. Kia also reveals its ISG stop/start system plus hybrid concept versions of the Soul and cee’d
  • The Borrego fuel-cell vehicle is unveiled at the Los Angeles show. It will develop the technology for future Kia and Hyundai production fuel-cell cars


  • Dramatic Kia Kue crossover concept is rolled out at Detroit
  • Kia’s new European headquarters and design studio in Frankfurt becomes operational in March
  • cee’d SW is Kia’s headline attraction at Geneva
  • KND-4, a 4x4 concept aimed at younger buyers with active lifestyles, grabs the limelight at the Seoul show
  • Peter Schreyer’s striking KEE coupé concept shows the company’s future design direction at the Frankfurt show
  • Kia’s football links are strengthened with a deal to be a UEFA partner for the European Championships


  • Kia introduces its seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty for the cee’d range.
  • Kia Soul concept is the star of the Detroit show
  • European-designed Kia cee’d concept is unveiled at the Geneva show
  • Kia announces plans to build its first US production plant at West Point, Georgia
  • New Carens makes its debut at the Madrid show
  • Kia recruits Peter Schreyer from Audi to be its Chief Design Officer. He joins on September 1
  • Kia cee’d is revealed at the Paris show alongside the sporty three-door pro_cee’d concept and pictures of the forthcoming cee’d SW
  • Dedicated Kia US design centre opens at Irvine, California
  • Žilina produces its first car, a cee’d hatchback, on December 8


  • The North American Kio Rio saloon breaks cover at the Detroit show, to be followed by the European hatchback at Geneva two months later
  • Kia’s KCD-2, or Mesa, rugged SUV concept also appears at the Detroit show
  • Kia opens its $60m proving ground in California
  • The new Kia Sedona appears at the Chicago show
  • Kia joins Hyundai in becoming a FIFA partner in the Football World Cup
  • Kia opens its new £8m import and distribution centre at Killingholme, on the Humber estuary
  • Kia and its Russian partner, SOK Group, begin production of the Spectra mid-sized saloon at Izh-Avto
  • Kia and Hyundai’s shared environmental R&D centre opens at Mabukri, in Seoul’s southern suburbs
  • The new Kia Magentis has its world premiere at the Frankfurt show alongside the Multi-S seven-seat crossover concept
  • Another record year in the UK, with sales reaching 39,761


  • The Kia Cerato makes its debut at the Brussels show. It is the first compact Kia with diesel engines
  • Kia Motors UK moves into its new home at Weybridge, Surrey
  • In March Kia announces plans to build its first European factory at Žilina in Slovakia
  • The all-new second-generation Sportage makes its debut at the Paris show alongside a fuel-cell research version
  • Kia’s UK sales are up again, by 57.6%, to 33,419. Cumulative UK sales top 100,000
  • Kia reveals the KCV-4 Mojave pick-up concept to test the water for a potential entry to the US truck market


  • Kia’s UK sales hit 21,177 – 71.5% more than the year before
  • Namyang creates the KCV-3 coupé-cabrio concept for the Frankfurt show. It was built by the French coachbuilder, Heuliez
  • The Sorento is introduced to the UK after a debut at the Birmingham motor show the previous autumn
  • The Kia Picanto is unveiled at the Frankfurt show


  • Kia takes direct control of its UK sales operation from MCL Group. Annual sales had grown to 12,351 vehicles
  • The company’s European design studio creates the KCV-2 concept for the Paris show
  • The first Kia Sorento appears. It features European styling and a rugged ladder-frame chassis for go-anywhere capability


  • At the Frankfurt show Kia reveals its first concept car, KCV-1 – a Carens-based crossover between a saloon, an estate and an MPV. It was created at the Namyang R&D centre


  • Kia moves into the MPV market with the launch of the Sedona (known as Carnival in some markets)
  • Asia’s ‘Tiger economies’ collapse and Korea is sucked into the crisis. Only Hyundai, of Korea’s auto-makers, avoids receivership
  • Hyundai rescues Kia and positions it as a youthful, sporty brand


  • The second-generation Sephia is revealed
  • Kia buys the design rights for the Lotus Elan and begins small-scale production, substituting one of its own engines for the original Isuzu unit


  • The Credos, sold in some markets as the Clarus, replaces the Concord and Capital


  • The Avella hatchback is launched. In the US it is sold as the Ford Aspire to replace the Festiva


  • Kia launches the large Potentia saloon, based on the Mazda 929
  • Kia begins sales in mainland Europe and the US
  • The first Sportage, designed with the help of the UK’s Mayflower Corporation and Hawtal Whiting, appears
  • Production of the Ford Festiva for the US ends after a total of 300,000 sales


  • Hwasung begins to make the first true Kia – the Sephia (Mentor in the UK). It is based on a Mazda platform with a 1.5-litre Kia engine. Lotus and Hawtal Whiting helped with body engineering


  • Kia begins exports to the UK with the Pride – 1,786 find homes in 1991 and are sold via an importer – MCL Group


  • Kia opens its second plant, Hwasung, at Asan Bay on Korea’s western seaboard. It will eventually have the capacity to build 600,000 cars a year


  • Kia’s first overseas design centre opens in Tokyo
  • The Kia Capital, another car based on the Mazda 626, is launched


  • The Pride is exported to the US to be sold as the Ford Festiva
  • Five-door Kia Pride launched. A saloon, the Pride Beta, and an estate follow in the 1990s
  • Kia builds its one millionth car


  • Production of the Mazda 626-based Kia Concord starts


  • The Korean government relaxes its restrictions on car production. Sohari begins manufacturing the 1.1-litre Mazda 121 as the Pride
  • Ford takes a 10% stake in Kia to add to its stock-holding in Mazda


  • The close ties with Mazda lead to Kia adding the Ceres pick-up and Besta, Rhino and Trade trucks to its line-up


  • Kia is ordered by the Korean government to stop building cars and concentrate on light commercial vehicles
  • Brisa production ends after a successful run of just under 76,000
  • Mazda takes an 8% equity stake in Kia and the Japanese trading house Itochu takes a 2% shareholding


  • The one-tonne Bongo van is introduced


  • Kia returns to CKD assembly to make 4,759 Fiat 132s and 381 Peugeot 604s


  • An estate is added to the Brisa K-303 range in November


  • The Brisa K-303, based on the Mazda 323, goes into production powered by a 1272cc petrol engine.
  • Kia buys Asia Motors, which makes heavy trucks, buses and military vehicles


  • A Brisa pick-up becomes the first Kia to be exported – to Qatar


Kia launches the Brisa S-1000 saloon, based on the Mazda 1000, in October The 1.3-litre S-1300 is added the same year


  • Three-wheeler truck production ceases after a run of 25,000
  • Mazda grants Kia a licence to build the four-wheel Titan light truck. ‘Titan’ becomes the generic name for trucks in Korea
  • Kia opens its Sohari plant in the Young-deungpo district of Seoul
  • Kia begins producing 1.0-litre petrol engines at Sohari – the first Korean company to manufacture its own power units


  • Kia joins the Korean auto industry by starting production of the 1.2-litre Fiat 124 saloon in January; 6,775 would eventually be made from CKD kits


  • The 600cc K600 three-wheeler truck is added


  • Kia starts production of 100cc C100 motorcycles, based on the Honda C100 Super Cub
  • Production of the 360cc K360 three-wheeler truck, based on a contemporary Mazda design, begins


  • Siheung plant opened to cope with rising demand


  • Company name changed to Kia Industrial Company. The word Kia means ‘rising out of Asia’
  • Kia begins building the Samcholli-ho bicycle, the first to be mass-produced in Korea


  • Export of bicycle components to Hong Kong begins – the first Korean goods of any kind to be shipped overseas


  • Kyungsung Precision Industry formed on December 1 to make bicycle components