Home2011 Detroit Auto Show
Consumer Reports auto experts report from the 2011 North American Auto Show in Detroit.
Kia KV7
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What is it? A "utility van" based on the same box-like form that spawned the Kia Soul, the KV7 is a look at what may eventually replace the Sedona minivan in Kia's lineup. Rather than use a swoopy exterior, the KV7 has an upright windshield and a vertical design.

The heart of the KV7 is its interior, which Kia has filled with four swiveling seats and a mini-lounge in the rear corner of the van. Kia has the elusive active-lifestyle, fun-loving young urbanite in mind with the KV7, not the typical mommy-mobile or swagger-wagon moms that traditional minivans target.

Hidden underneath the LED lights, snazzy paint, and lounge-like interior is Kia's 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission in the KV7 concept.

What is new or notable? Rather than employ sliding doors on the side, the second-row passenger-side door is of a gull-wing design, while the dashboard moves six inches closer to the drive when the push-button starter is engaged.

CR's take: Look for elements of the KV7 to appear in the replacement for the Sedona, which is a mostly-bland also-ran in the world of traditional minivans.

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