Kia Brings Heart-Pounding Horsepower, Athletic Luxury And Never-Before-Seen Vehicles To The 2018 SEMA Show

Kia’s 2018 SEMA Show Activation Showcases the Brand’s Youthful Spirit While Outrageous Outdoor Activation Showcases the Brand’s Newest SUV, the Telluride

– Massive outdoor off-road course offers breathtaking ride-alongs to experience the eye-popping capabilities of customized Tellurides[1]

– Telluride “Horizon Roamer” harkens to the Rubicon Trail

– Telluride “Cadet Leader” fearlessly blazes the trail less traveled

– Telluride “Desert Drifter” performs in some of the harshest conditions

– Telluride “Baja Glider” tackles the daunting trails south of the border

– Formula Drift drivers return to SEMA to provide thrilling rides in specially modified Stinger GTs[2]

– World debut of spirited Forte GT[3] sport trims bring athletic prowess direct from the factory to the show floor

– Queensland Police Stinger[4] Patrol Car ready to capture the speed demons inside and outside SEMA

– Bespoke DUB K900[5] and Stinger built to the exacting standards of today’s hottest athletes and musicians[6]

– One-off Forte Federation outfitted with parts and accessories from leading aftermarket suppliers makes a hot car even hotter[7]

– Forte drift car built in partnership with Red Bull is the hottest Stinger GT-powered Forte you’ll never be able to buy[8]


LAS VEGAS, Oct. 30, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Following the surprising appearance of Kia’s newest SUV, the upcoming Telluride, at this year’s New York Fashion Week9, the brand known for taking chances returns to SEMA with an outdoor activation that’s bigger and better than ever, eclipsing Kia’s 2017 SEMA drifting experience.  Designed as a thrill ride for those brave enough to jump into the passenger seats of four highly-modified Tellurides, Kia’s 2018 “Torque Track,” located just outside the sprawling Las Vegas Convention Center (Orange lot), promises to leave a lasting impression and will be running through Thursday. The custom off-road course puts these Tellurides through their paces, including a jump, mountain climb and water incursion – all showcasing their off-roading potential.  Meanwhile, back by popular demand, professional Formula Drift drivers will provide ride-alongs, granting those with an adrenaline addiction the opportunity to be pinned against Stinger GT’s race-inspired seats.  Drivers will effortlessly slide customized Stinger GTs around corners and launch the cars from 0-to-60 mph before bringing them to a full stop with the vehicles’ high-performance Brembo brakes.

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“We surprised everyone with Telluride’s special appearance in New York earlier this year; we showed its stylish swagger on a fashion runway and now at SEMA we are showcasing the vehicle’s more rugged side,” said Saad Chehab, Vice President, Marketing Communications, Kia Motors America. “Of course a production Telluride won’t be able to fly over extreme jumps like these modified versions, but we want the SEMA attendees to get to know Kia as the youthful brand we are and we think the Torque Track does that in a very special way.”

Kia partnered with LGE-CTS Motorsports to conceive the four special-built Tellurides and each vehicle has its own distinctive design and style.  Themed after different off-road environments, all four are powered by a stout V6 engine with all-wheel drive. The interiors showcase Telluride’s exquisite materials and craftsmanship and offer a quiet respite from the hectic SEMA show experience. Set to debut in its production form at the upcoming 2019 North American International Auto Show, the 8-occupant Telluride is planned to go on sale in the U.S. in the first half of next year.

Telluride Horizon Roamer

With its sights set on the difficult and challenging Rubicon Trail, the Telluride Horizon Roamer takes on the Kia Torque Track with the following modifications:

  • Unique Bright Orange paint
  • Roof-mounted cargo rack with integrated LED light bar
  • Custom front brush guard
  • Snorkel for deep-water fording
  • Front brush guard and skid plate
  • Straight-pipe exhaust
  • Black Rhino 32-inch wheels with Milestar Patagonia Mud Terrain tires

Telluride Cadet Leader

Trailblazing is the kind of off-roading that can get very tricky, very quickly. An unseen drop, an off-camber articulation, a break-over that rips out the oil pan, being in front of it all requires some specialized equipment, including:

  • Flat Military Green & Black paint
  • Rotopak carrier on the rear quarter panels
  • Brush guard with skid plate
  • Roof rack
  • Rear tube bumper with skid plate
  • Modified straight pipe exhaust
  • Black Rhino 32-inch wheels with Milestar Patagonia Mud Terrain tires
  • Amber Halo LED lights

Telluride Desert Drifter

One of the most hostile off-road environments lies just outside the glittering lights of Las Vegas and if your vehicle isn’t up to the challenge, it can mean serious consequences. Fortunately, the Telluride Desert Drifter is up to the test.

  • Desert Military Tan and Black paint
  • Hood-mounted Rotopacks
  • Brush guard with skid plate
  • Roof rack
  • Rear tube bumper with skid plate
  • Modified straight pipe exhaust
  • Black Rhino 32-inch wheels with Milestar Patagonia Mud Terrain tires
  • Halo LED light bar

Telluride Baja Glider

Don’t let the name fool you; “gliding” south of the border through Mexico’s legendary off-road countryside simply doesn’t happen. But properly equipped with some very tough gear, the Telluride Baja Glider makes a tough drive almost like a walk in the park.

  • Deep Black paint
  • Forged tube front bumper with skid plate
  • Curved LED front light bar and roof-mounted LED light bar
  • Custom rear tube bumper with skid plate
  • Modified straight pipe exhaust
  • Black Rhino 32-inch wheels with Milestar Patagonia Mud Terrain tires

Suspension Modifications

Regardless of each Telluride’s off-road personality, all four have highly modified suspensions that have been purpose-built to handle the rigors of multiple days of abuse on the Kia Torque Track.

  • Front suspension:
    • KW Motorsports inverted-shaft long-travel McPherson struts with remote reservoirs, linear bearings and 3-way adjustable damping
    • 3-inch wider track
    • Fabricated lower control arms
    • Corrected bump steer and roll center
    • 2-inch increased travel
    • King hydraulic bump stops, shock tower reinforcements
  • Rear suspension:
    • KW Motorsports long travel inverted WRC spec shocks with remote reservoirs and 3-way adjustable damping
    • 3-inch wider track
    • Fabricated multi-link suspension with toe curve and anti-squat correction
    • Longer trailing arms for constant geometry
    • 1.5-inch increased travel than stock
    • King hydraulic bump stops

New York Fashion Week Brandon Maxwell Telluride

A bespoke version of Kia Motors America’s largest and most refined SUV – the upcoming all-new 2020 Telluride – made its first public appearance during fashion designer Brandon Maxwell’s New York Fashion Week show in September and makes its West Coast debut here at SEMA.  Created by Kia’s U.S. design studio in Irvine, California, the customized Telluride that appeared on the runway drew influence from Maxwell’s Spring Summer 2019 collection: “Texas.”

The one-of-a-kind Telluride provides a thought-provoking glimpse into the creative process that takes place when designers in separate industries collaborate. This specially tailored Telluride includes several nods to Maxwell’s Texas roots, including natural wood interior trim and saddle-inspired double-stitched leather adornments on the dash, door panels and grab handles. Similar leather details cover the outside rearview mirrors and door handles. Outside, the Telluride’s deep green paint reflects the color of the concept vehicle that debuted in Detroit two years ago. Custom front and rear bumpers, skidplates and sidestep sills exude a ranch-ready look that’s backed up with a hidden winch and a snorkel for deep-river fording. Burly 265/50R-20 off-road tires wrap around flat-black alloy wheels and the spare tire has been custom mounted to the rear hatch, which opens to a metal- and leather-trimmed cargo area. A custom wood and aluminum roof rack with a beautiful custom leather tow strap tongue provide the perfect finishing touches.

2020 Kia Forte GT

Kia will also spread its amazing product looks and muscle inside SEMA with the debut of its new performance Forte, the GT.  The Stinger GT took the lead last year and now Kia welcomes the Forte GT. The Forte GT will be offered in GT1 and GT2 packages and is set to go on sale next summer.  The GT trim is fitted with a 201-horsepower turbocharged engine, fully independent front and rear suspension and growling sport-tuned exhaust – all direct from the factory to the show floor.  Available 18-inch high-performance Michelin Sport summer tires mounted on GT-exclusive two-tone alloy wheels, LED headlights, projector fog lights, GT-exclusive black sport grille with red highlights, gloss black power outside mirrors, sport side sills and rear spoiler help set this hot sedan apart from the crowd.  An available 6-speed manual transmission or 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, alloy sport pedals, leather-wrapped flat-bottom steering wheel with paddle shifters, elevate the driving characteristics of this compact sedan to all-out sport sedan.  Available “Sofino” GT sport seats with contrasting piping and performance side bolsters, an available power sunroof with LED interior overhead lighting, and LED ambient interior lighting with illuminated GT dash inlay advance the performance GT’s vigorous spirit.

Queensland Police Stinger

When Australia’s Queensland Police needed a new fleet of pursuit vehicles, they went all-in on the 365-horsepower Kia Stinger GT.  Citing the fastback’s performance during rigorous testing, Queensland police will put 100 Stinger GTs into service over the next 12 months.  Testifying to the Stinger’s build quality, the only modification Queensland Police made to the Australian-spec Stinger is a plug-and-play wiring loom to accommodate the police electronics. Otherwise everything is standard—engine, brakes, suspension, etc.  Special equipment, such as radios, emergency lights, and other equipment was added by Queensland Police.  Assistant Queensland Police Service Commissioner (Road Policing Command) Mike Keating said the selection process was extensive.  “It started with the desktop evaluation, then a track performance evaluation and then the operational evaluation conducted in real-world conditions.  The final overall evaluation and review included the very important aspect of maintenance and cost.  The Stinger performed very well in all areas and we had nothing but top reports from all the field officers.  The result is a road-policing first for us, the first foreign car to perform these duties.”

2019 DUB Kia Stinger GT

DUB took the aggressive fastback sedan and made a series of menacing modifications that take Stinger GT to unexpected places inside, outside and under the hood.  Wrapped in Avery Brushed Steel with carbon fiber accents, the wide body Stinger rolls on 22-inch staggered Dropstars forged wheels riding on 245/30-22 Nitto Tires (front) and 265/30-22 Nitto Tires (rear).  A stunning red leather and black suede upholstery upgrade the Stinger’s already outstanding driver-focused cockpit, and custom exhaust and air intake give the rapid Stinger GT even more muscle.  Meanwhile, a custom audio system, LED lighting, underhood dress-up kit, air ride suspension and DUBiR tinted windows further prove that no detail was missed per DUB’s exacting clientele.

2019 DUB Kia K900

Fans of DUB’s distinctive style will love the transformation this luxury salon has undergone.  Kia’s 2019 K900 provided the perfect canvas for DUB to unleash its creativity on this uninhibited custom ride.  Veiled in electric blue, the wide body K900 features gloss black accents and, not to be outdone, the cockpit has been elegantly detailed with custom blue and black leather and suede upholstery, DUBiR tinted windows, and remote-controlled LED headliner and lighting.  Riding on an air suspension to provide that perfect DUB look, this custom K900 rolls on 24-inch staggered TIS forged wheels and 275/25/24 Nitto tires.  A specially developed multimedia audio system, remote-controlled LED lighting, and MiFi internet capability make the DUB K900 a rolling paradise.

2019 Kia Forte Federation

Kia’s hot Forte Federation furthers Kia’s commitment to the aftermarket industry with a veritable cornucopia of performance and design enhancing accessories10.  The unique vehicle is outfitted with parts from leading aftermarket suppliers, including aggressive aerodynamic components by Air Design such as a rear deck spoiler, rear diffuser, side skirts, front lip spoiler and front air curtains which all provide a stunning contrast for the Livid Lime paint scheme.  A cold air intake by K&N coupled with an axle-back performance exhaust by Borla make this Forte scream.  Meanwhile, progressive-rate sport springs by Eibach, 19-inch “Mosport” wheels by TSW and ultra-high-performance tires by Falken enhance handling.  Adding fuel to the aftermarket fire, these parts and accessories will be available for purchase from the respective suppliers.

Kia Forte Drift Car

Kia’s Forte Drift Car was developed in partnership with Red Bull, the star of Kia’s recent ad campaign.  Built from a production Forte EX, this particular compact sedan was modified into a monster.  Kia shoehorned Stinger GT’s twin-turbo V6 into the Forte, but the twin-turbo V6 now points North-South.  With some tricky engineering, this Forte has became a 375-horsepower rear-wheel drive beast with a custom intake manifold, six-speed sequential transmission, quick change rear differential and a hybrid drift/grip suspension that begs to be drifted. This one-of-a-kind vehicle also features a hydraulic rear hand brake, custom wide body aerodynamics and a roll cage.  Red Bull and Race Service brought this fantasy into reality.

About Kia Motors America

Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America continues to top quality surveys and is recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand.  Kia serves as the “Official Automotive Partner” of the NBA and LPGA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and SUVs proudly built in West Point, Georgia.*

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* The Sorento and Optima GDI (S, EX, SX and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

1 2020 Telluride prototypes modified for off-road exhibition; modified vehicles NOT for sale. Professional drivers on closed course. Do not attempt. Production model expected Spring 2019 in limited quantities.
2 2018 Stinger GT prototypes modified for drifting exhibition; modified vehicles NOT for sale. Professional drivers on closed course. Do not attempt.
3 Custom 2020 Forte GT prototypes with options and aftermarket features will be shown; modified vehicles not for sale.  Production model expected Summer 2019.
4 Custom Australian-spec 2018 Stinger. Australian model varies from U.S. model.
5 Production K900 available in select dealers in select markets with limited availability.
6 DUB-modified vehicles not available for purchase.
7 Aftermarket accessories are not developed or warrantied by Kia, and may not meet Kia quality standards.  Any damage caused to your vehicle due to the failure of an aftermarket accessory may negatively affect the Kia original vehicle limited warranty.  Refer to Kia’s Warranty and Consumer Information Manual for terms and restrictions.
8 Drift car prototype NOT for sale. Red Bull’s marks are registered trademarks of Red Bull GmbH.
9 Custom 2020 Telluride with options and aftermarket features. Brandon Maxwell designed Telluride not available for purchase.
10 Aftermarket accessories are not developed or warrantied by Kia, and may not meet Kia quality standards.  Any damage caused to your vehicle due to the failure of an aftermarket accessory may negatively affect the Kia original vehicle limited warranty. Refer to Kia’s Warranty and Consumer Information Manual for terms and restrictions.

SOURCE Kia Motors America