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Saturday, July 11, 2009

Kia to launch Forte LP1 Hybrid next month

The Kia Forte LP1 Hybrid is due for release in the Korean market next month. Kia first introduced the Forte hybrid car at the 2009 Seoul Auto Show earlier this year and at the same time, the company also introduced it’s new eco-friendly sub-brand, called Eco-Dynamics.

The Eco Dynamics brand will find it’s place on new Kia vehicles with environmentally-pleasant technologies. Those include cars and crossovers equipped with ISG (Idle Stop and Go) systems, hybrid electric powertrains and fuel cell stacks. First to bear the Eco Dynamics logo will be the 2010 Kia Forte LPI hybrid.

Kia’s first ever mass produced hybrid car will be powered by a mild-hybrid system consisting of 1.6L LPI (Liquefied Petroleum Injected) Gamma engine - producing a crop of 114-horsepower - and electric motor that generates additional 20 horsepower. Mated to the CVT transmission, the Forte LPI hybrid will average an estimated fuel economy of 4.7L/100km.

On the outside, the Forte LPI hybrid differentiates itself from it’s non-hybrid variant with radically redesigned front and rear fascias. In front, Forte hybrid features a slightly redesigned Kia corporate grille and a bumper with attractive fog lights design, while at rear, there are new LED technology equipped tail-lights, lip spoiler and a revamped rear bumper. Inside the Forte hybrid features a navigation display and a Super Vision instrument cluster for hybrid system data.

According to Kia, the Forte hybrid LPI will be the first hybrid car in the world to use a Lithium Polymer battery pack, which will be supplied by Korean LG Chem, the same company charged with supply the battery pack for the upcoming Chevy Volt. The Kia Forte LPI hybrid electric vehicle is scheduled to go on sale in South Korean market in August this year.

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