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Kia is preparing a new CUV called the Trail'ster, and it really seems like it is trying to directly compete against the Jeep Renegade. It's also electric, which is pretty cool. Here I've put together all the teaser images that I could find. If this came out around the same time as the Renegade, would you consider it?







It will have an AWD system though we don't have any details on that yet. Rumor has it that it will probably utilize a gasoline FWD powertrain paired with an electric motor moving the rear axle.
 

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Meh, does not have the boxy upright appearance of the Renegade, does not have the ground clearance of the Trailhawk. Then four hours into your Saturday adventure, deep in the middle of nowhere, a place you need 4x4, and your RWD batteries go dead, no thank you.
 

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Meh, does not have the boxy upright appearance of the Renegade, does not have the ground clearance of the Trailhawk. Then four hours into your Saturday adventure, deep in the middle of nowhere, a place you need 4x4, and your RWD batteries go dead, no thank you.
They would be charged off the gasoline engine. It is also pretty boxy. If they lifted it any over the normal soul, it's probably closer in clearance than you think.

I like the looks, I'd cross shop it.
 

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If it is only electric and intended for for off-road purposes or less pretentiously said, for Outdoors purpose, no thanks.

However if it has a gasoline engine why not. It could be a great competition card in the hands of consumers to negotiate better deals on the Renegade, especially that, this little one will cost allot in its Trailhawk trim here in Canada...

Any competition is a good thing for us. However Electric is not a bright idea for a car that goes into the wilderness and needs power to negociate rough terrain...
 

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If it is only electric and intended for for off-road purposes or less pretentiously said, for Outdoors purpose, no thanks.

However if it has a gasoline engine why not. It could be a great competition card in the hands of consumers to negotiate better deals on the Renegade, especially that, this little one will cost allot in its Trailhawk trim here in Canada...

Any competition is a good thing for us. However Electric is not a bright idea for a car that goes into the wilderness and needs power to negociate rough terrain...
The AWD is in theory electric.IT is a FWD gasoline powered vehicle with a supplementary electric motor on the rear wheels. IMO I think there is a lot of cool stuff that can be done with series hybrid setups. I'm kind of psyched to see this, although I'd rather avoid kia dealers at this point.
 

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Watched the live TFLCar broadcast of this "off-road" KIA Soul and I really like the design and I think if it goes in production, it can be a serious alternative to Renegade... Again, all competition makes deals better...

However my opinion is that the price won`t be cheaper than the Renegade, let`s say Trailhawk... At least here in Canada...
 

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. . . If this came out around the same time as the Renegade, would you consider it? . . .
No, I don't like its looks. I abhor the look of many current vehicles that "drag" the headlights back on the sides of the fenders.

The Renegade has its lights in the front where they belong. My current cars (Dodge Challengers) are made the same way.
 

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I guess I don't know what "preparing" means. Is this definitely going into production (and if so, when would it be available)? Or is this just a trial balloon to see if they get much buzz out of the concept. To answer your hypothetical question - yes - I would definitely consider looking at it. But that's pretty meaningless. It's even less available than the Renegade, 500X, HR-V and CX-3.
 

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Watch the new Kia Trail'ster concept tackle Extreme Off-Road Challenges, including smooth dirt roads, pine needles and plowed snow parking lots.

 

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IMO, I doubt it would directly compete. First, all that hybrid electric gear and new rear suspension and floor plan changes are going to add substantial cost, taking it another cost notch or two higher, out of Renegade range. Then, the existing platform does not seem to have the "Engineered from the beginning" articulation and chassis design to compete in true offroad, other than as CalTom noted, perhaps over pine needles. Lastly, as a concept, have to figure a solid year or more until it hits the market. So, say a 2017 model maybe. By then, Jeep may have deisel and maybe the new Turbo to increase the power and economy.
 

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And OMG, when you listen to that video, the Ham'ster sounds just like the Lil Tykes electric ones.

And did you guys not think of how now they'll be in the crosshairs of the Wrangler guys and not us?

I say speed up development!
 

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There isn't a single vehicle in the Renegade's class that can compete with the TrailHawk's off road capabilities. Not a single one.

Now for the Sport, Latitude and Limited Renegades, there is a TON of competition on many different fronts (quality, economy, price, etc.).

So if you are purchasing a TrailHawk, you will not find a single vehicle that can compete with it. If you aren't interested in ground clearance, skid plates or the upgraded suspension the Trail'ster might suit you just fine.
 
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