Kia Motors Corp. has finally launched it’s much anticipated large SUV!
The vehicle, which took 29 months to develop and costed Kia $245 million, is based on the Mesa concept car which was revealed in 2005.
In a similar move to Hyundai Motor Co.’s challenging foreign auto brands with the sports sedan Genesis, Kia Motors will also be pitting the Mohave against foreign carmakers’ SUVs, including the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ford Explorer.
For this, Kia Motors has taken pains to ensure that the Mohave can match up to its supposed competitors. The car is equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission produced by the German parts maker ZF Friedrichshafen AG.
The Mohave also comes with a 3-liter, 6-valce diesel engine in it’s home market, which puts out 250 brake horsepower and has a fuel economy of 11.1 kilometers per liter of fuel.
The car also comes with a host of safety features, including curtain and side airbags that are deployed when sensors detect that the vehicle is about to roll over.
According to the company, 75 percent of the car’s frame has been constructed with high-strength steel for increased integrity of the cabin, and is equipped with an array of electronic systems to help prevent accidents.
Aside from using the latest technology in building this car, Kia Motors has opted for the badge used for the company’s large sedan Opirus to set the Mohave apart from other vehicles.
The company has set an annual sales target of 20,000 units for the local market and 60,000 units for exports from 2009. For this year, the company aims to sell 18,000 units locally, and export 30,000 units.