Inside, Kia's SoCal design crew aimed to create a comfortable, lounge-style feel. There are four rotating captain's chairs and a three-seat mini-lounge in the rear, allowing all occupants including the driver (as long he or she isn't actually piloting the vehicle) to face each other as in what Kia calls an "inviting social space ideal for a gathering of friends." Part of that inviting social space includes the ability to connect devices to an integrated Wi-Fi hotspot or use the available onboard computers. There are two in the vehicle -- one accessed through the rear tabletop-video display and the other through the dashboard infotainment system.
Additional interior appointments include the moveable dashboard, which retracts six inches to allow for more passenger space, and integrated storage compartments in the rear mini-lounge. The KV7 also features green LED accent lighting built into the floor, dash, and rear-video display.
Although it's officially a concept, the KV7 has a completely realistic powertrain under the hood -- a departure from the future tech vaporware many modern concepts employ. It's powered by Kia's new turbocharged, direct-injected, 2.0-liter I-4 as found in the Kia Optima SX. It reportedly produces 285 horsepower -- 11 more than in the Optima -- and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. According to Kia, this combination is good for more than 30 mpg highway.
Will we see a version of the KV7 on U.S. streets sometime soon? It's certainly possible, given the Soul's quick move from concept to production, its real-world powertrain, and the fact that both the Borrego and Rondo have been jettisoned from the Kia lineup. Just don't bet on that gullwing door making the production line.