Kia Trailster SUV with e-AWD could be headed for production!
Kia of USA unveiled a concept vehicle at the Chicago Auto Show that perfectly fits the 2021 Kia Soul crossover range.
Kia Trailster specs
The new Kia Trailster uses styling and drivetrain components that take the production Soul from an urban vehicle to a more rugged all-wheel-drive vehicle that is at home off the city streets as it is on them.
It is coated in a Polar Pearl Snowdrift / Terra Bronze Metallic color scheme, and has a canvas roof that can be rolled back.
Snowy trails and muddy fire roads are all handled with consummate ease by the Kia Trailster, thanks to a rear axle-mounted electric all-wheel drive system.
It’s impossible not to see the production Soul lying at the heart of the Trailster, but there are also elements of the Soul Trackster and Soulster concepts to be found there, too.
All three concept vehicles have shown just how far the Soul can be pushed in terms of performance.
Kia Trail’ster exterior colors
The colors used in the exterior are inspired by the elements, with springtime snow and mud the main focal points.
These are both terrains that the Trailster is designed to hand with ease.
The Polar Pearl Snowdrift color is modern and neutral, serving as the perfect contrast to the warmth of the Terra Bronze Metallic tone used on the roof and the lower cladding, which represents the soft dirt roads found in nature.
The Trail’ster also has some sporty, high-tech elements to go with the more natural tones.
These include fire-red wheel accents and polished billet aluminum sections, both of which hint at the performance that the concept vehicle delivers.
The use of LED lighting throughout gives the car a very unique sense of style in every direction.
At the front of the car, Kia’s signature grille bars extend through the projector headlamps, which are similar to those seen on the K900 luxury sedan.
The addition of fog lights gives the front of the car a bold look, but they also serve a practical purpose, adding powerful light to off-road tracks.
LED lighting is also used around back, with the lights there built into extremely rugged light housings.
Inside the Trail’ster
One the inside, brown leather and aluminum accents are used to convey and earthy yet upscale environment that is both comfortable and durable.
The materials used in the cabin are inspired by snow gear and equipment.
What immediately draws the eye is the sturdy center console which features a bold red ignition button, AWD controls, and a thick gear shifter.
The leather-trimmed seats look incredibly inviting, while the floor mats come with aluminum inlays to add a high level of traction.
1,6L turbo engine
Under the hood, the Trail’ster features a 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that is mated to a 6-speed automatic, cranking out 188 horsepower and 251 Nm of torque.
e-AWD System: how it works?
An electric all-wheel drive system is in place to deliver low-speed assist that will deliver a higher level of traction when the vehicle encounters less than perfect terrain.
The entire set-up also helps with fuel economy, as the all-wheel drive only operates as needed.
The Trail’ster employs what Kia calls a “through the road” hybrid system, with a front gasoline engine and a rear electric motor.
You won’t find the usual mechanical link between the engine and the motor, as it is the road that serves as the connection between the two.
The electric component of the new Kia Trails’ter concept gets its energy from a 1.2 kWh Lithium Ion Polymer battery that powers a 27 kW, 270 volt electric motor.
A hybrid starter generator is used to start and stop the engine as needed, sending energy to the battery in the process.
The technology may sound like it would take up a lot of space, but it has been designed to be light and easy to store under the cargo floor.
The rear electric drive system kicks into operation in a trio of different scenarios that are dependent on the position of the throttle and the condition of the road.
When light throttle is employed, the Kia electric motor moves the vehicle forward for about 2-3 miles.
Normal driving conditions sees the turbo engine and electric motor combine to increase power and torque when navigating wet roads that may cause the car to lose traction.
Lastly, the electric motor will recover kinetic energy when the vehicle is coasting or braking, with that energy sent to the battery to help with recharging.