Updated to include comment from Kia.
Kia is hard at work on a pickup aimed at taking on mid-size options from the likes of Ford and Toyota. The news comes courtesy of Kia’s Damien Meredith, who told CarsGuide that “work has begun” on the truck. The South Korean brand’s Chief Operating Officer for Australia also shared that the forthcoming pickup is due to arrive Down Under in 2022 or 2023 with a Hyundai variant expected around the same time.
According to Meredith, the Kia pickup is no “lifestyle vehicle” like the unibody Honda Ridgeline or the Hyundai Santa Cruz concept. “What we’ve requested is the full gambit,” Meredith shared with the Australian publication, with the COO adding that the truck is due to offer both dual and single cabs, as well as gas and diesel engine options.
Of course, any geographer will tell you that Australia is not the United States, which is why we reached out to Kia Motors America to determine the truck's U.S. potential. A spokesperson for the brand was unable to "comment on remarks made about the brand outside the US market," but acknowledged that Kia is "always studying the [American] market" for new opportunities.
Assuming the truck is earmarked for the states, we anticipate the model forgoing the Australian markets single-cab and diesel engine options, as both are not prevalent among its U.S.-market competition, which includes the Chevrolet Colorado, Ford Ranger, Jeep Gladiator, Nissan Frontier, and Toyota Tacoma.
Still, anything's possible, and both could find their way to the truck if or when it makes its way stateside. We’ll update this space once a Kia spokesperson gets back to us with a comment on the truck's U.S.-market potential.