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New Car Buyers Rank The Kia Sorento And Sportage As The Best Value In Their Segments In Newly Released Consumer Survey

IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Kia Motors America (KMA) is one of the fastest-growing car companies in the U.S., and its two popular crossover utility vehicles have acquired an impressive collection of awards and accolades from industry observers.  This week, the brand's two CUVs received a different type of recognition when Strategic Vision revealed that new car buyers identified the 2013 Sorento and 2013 Sportage as the number one ranked vehicles in Total Value in the Medium and Small SUV segments, respectively, in the research firm's latest Total Value Index ® (TVI) study.

More than 350 new vehicles were vetted and over 77,000 buyers who purchased models from September 2011 to June 2012 were surveyed to compile Strategic Vision's 16 th annual TVI study, which revealed that quality and innovation shaped buyers' opinion of overall values.  "The result shows that innovation is the strongest single predictor of which cars, brands and corporations are seen as the best value, or 'Total Value' in our study," stated Alexander Edwards, president of Strategic Vision.

"Kia takes great pride in advancing value to new levels of sophistication, and Strategic Vision's 'Total Value' recognition is gratifying because it is based on feedback from Sorento and Sportage customers," said Michael Sprague, executive vice president, marketing & communications, KMA.  "This honor speaks to Kia's goal of producing cars that are not only affordable but also dynamic in terms of their design, performance and cutting-edge technology attributes."

The Sorento combines fun and functionality in a refined and value-minded CUV with impressive power.  Kia's longest running nameplate, the Sportage, offers design and performance in a compact CUV with modern amenities and a fun-to-drive personality.

Kia's Unprecedented Growth

Kia Motors is one of the world's fastest moving global automotive brands; from 2009-2011 Kia launched more new vehicles in the U.S. than any other automaker, and under the guidance of chief design officer Peter Schreyer earned a reputation as an industry leader in automotive styling.  Kia Motors America's full line of fun-to-drive cars and CUVs has earned critical acclaim and dramatically increased consumer awareness, perception and consideration for the brand.  In 2011, KMA recorded its 17th consecutive year of market share growth, thanks in part to the largest increase of any major brand in perceived quality[2] and the industry's highest brand loyalty ranking[3].  Kia's U.S.-based manufacturing facility in West Point, Georgia – KMMG – is responsible for the creation of more than 10,000 plant and supplier jobs and builds two of the company's best-selling vehicles in the U.S. – the Sorento CUV and Optima midsize sedan*.  Kia's value and technology-laden lineup also includes the Sportage compact CUV, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Optima Hybrid, Forte compact sedan, Forte 5-door compact hatchback, Forte Koup two-door coupe, Rio and Rio 5-door sub-compacts and Sedona minivan.

About the 2013 Sorento

The 2013 Sorento incorporates all of the comforts of Kia's signature crossover utility vehicle with the functionality consumers have come to expect.  Built at Kia Motors' U.S. manufacturing plant in West Point, Georgia, the Sorento can be powered by any one of three capable engines including a robust 3.5-liter V6 engine with sportmatic shifting.  The Sorento also offers optional All-Wheel Drive, third-row seven-passenger seating, Bluetooth ®[4], SiriusXM radio[5], Infinity ®[6] surround sound and Kia's UVO powered by Microsoft ® voice- activated infotainment and communication system[7].  The refined and value-minded 2013 Sorento is offered at a starting MSRP of $23,150[8].

About the 2013 Sportage

The 2013 Kia Sportage offers value-, image- and safety-conscious consumers a striking design and a standout combination of fun-to-drive performance, the latest in-vehicle technologies, and an abundance of comfort, convenience and safety features all at a tremendous value.  The sleek and modern Sportage is available with either a 2.4-liter, 176 horsepower engine or a 2.0-liter, 260 horsepower Turbo GDI engine.  Inside the cabin, the Sportage offers a host of available technology features, including Kia's all new UVO Powered by Microsoft ® hands-free, voice-activated infotainment system.  The 2013 Sportage features a starting MSRP of $19,000[9].

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea.  KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 755 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA.  In 2011, KMA recorded its best-ever annual sales total and became one of the fastest growing car companies in the U.S. [10]  Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, advanced safety features and new technologies.

Information about Kia Motors America and its full vehicle line-up is available at its website –  www.kia.com.  For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.

About Strategic Vision

Strategic Vision is a research-based consultancy with over thirty-five years of experience in understanding the consumers' and constituents' decision-making systems for a variety of Fortune 100 clients, including most automotive manufacturers.  Its unique expertise is in identifying consumers' comprehensive motivational hierarchies, including the product attributes, personal benefits, value/emotions and images that drive perceptions and behaviors.

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