Kia GT five-door approved, will tackle A7, Panamera

Kia might finally be entering the four-door coupe market in the near future with a production version of its GT Concept from the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. According to Edmunds, Kia execs at that Paris Motor Show confirmed that the swoopy model finally has been given the green light to go on sale, and that would likely be sometime in 2016 in the US.

Kia would reportedly focus the GT on the US market, but a European version with a diesel is also a possibility. As with the K900 premium sedan, the brand is taking on some established competition with the new model, including the likes of the Audi A7 and Porsche Panamera. Judging from the rest of the Korean company's range, an attractive feature for many buyers would likely be a price several grand lower than the challengers in the segment.

"Four-door coupes aren't necessarily sales champs, but right now they are popular, just as the retro theme was the "in thing" 15 years ago," said auto industry analyst Dave Sullivan from AutoPacific to Autoblog. Something like the GT would also help with Kia's increasing focus on improving its design design because it can "make a statement about what your brand stands for."

In concept form, the GT sports a 3.3-liter turbocharged V6 making 389 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque and routes power to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. According to Edmunds, the prototype's suicide doors wouldn't make it to production. That's hardly a surprise since they're generally the first thing cut in the transition to the showroom. Hopefully, its weird, flying buttress air intakes at the front make it to the final form, though.

Rumblings about the GT seeing production go back several years and even include the possibility of wagon and coupe variants. However, anything beyond the four-door coupe version is pure speculation at this point because Kia has to figure out whether it's a success or not first.

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