The truck was built to help Kia conduct consumer research, with no production plans at the time of its introduction. Peter M. Butterfield, President and CEO of Kia Motors America, made this statement to the press:
- "The idea behind the Mojave project was to take advantage of Kia's research and development resources and create a concept vehicle that is closely aligned with Kia's positioning in North America. Despite the fact that we do not currently have a factory with the capacity, or the location, to manufacture this truck, the Mojave is an outstanding example of what Kia is capable of delivering, and will allow us to conduct consumer research at the Chicago International Auto Show to gauge consumers' reactions."
Since their goal was to gauge consumer acceptance, the design team purposely steered clear of creating a typical concept truck with far-out styling elements.
The mid-size Mojave truck features a two-plus-two interior with front-facing rear seats. All seating positions are accessible through four center-opening doors. The B-pillar is absent, creating a large entryway into the vehicle.
Mojave's design team used aircraft design as their inspiration to create an interior space that is focused around the truck's instrumentation, including a center stack with oversized graphics, and controls for entertainment features such as onboard navigation and trip computers that can accommodate an add-on DVD video system.
There's a removable center console storage box, and a built-in storage bin underneath the rear seat offers waterproof, concealed storage. The rear doors feature angled, fold-out storage bins.
All four seats are upholstered in bleached tan leather.
A Few Facts About the Mojave Truck
Push a button and the Mojave's rear bed will stretch into the passenger compartment. The power-operated rear wall slides forward to extend the bed from 71 inches to 86 inches in length, enough room to fit a 4x8 sheet of plywood. The extended bed position provides built-in protection from forward-sliding cargo due to the design of the folded rear seat back.
The rear tailgate creates a flush, extended load floor when folded flat, making the removal of heavy or rolling items much easier.
There's extra storage space for smaller items inside the truck bed, behind each wheel well.
Powertrain & Suspension
The Mojave concept truck has a 3.8-liter, DOHC 24-valve V6 that puts out an estimated 280 horsepower, coupled with a 5-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission. Its 130 inch wheelbase is longer than the Kia Sorento platform on which it is based.
- Fully-boxed ladder frame with nine cross members
- Double-wishbone, coil-over-shock front independent suspension
- Five-link rigid rear axle with coil springs and level-control
- Front and rear suspensions augmented by stabilizer bars and gas-pressure shocks
- Power-assisted rack and pinion steering
- Power-assisted four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, electronic brake force distribution (EBS) and brake assist
- 20-inch sport tires on 20-inch machine-finished wheels
Kia and Hyundai Research & Development are building a 4,300-acre facility in the Mojave desert, set to be the proving ground for the next generation of Kia vehicles for the North American market. If consumer reaction to the new concept truck is high, maybe it will be among the early vehicles tested there.