Kia Brings a Quintet of Souls to Crush it in Vegas [2013 SEMA Show]

Kia Brings a Quintet of Souls to Crush it in Vegas

Hunter S. Thompson is quoted as saying, “The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.” And while that may or may not be true—take it from someone with experience, it is—Kia remains undeterred, and it has prepped five Souls, each with its own distinctive music-business theme, to display at this year’s SEMA show.

Vans Warped Tour Soul

Like most people, we’ve wasted years of our lives trying to find a way to replace our car’s stupid pointless windows with kick-ass stereo speakers. And now, Kia, with the help of our friends at Popular Mechanics, has gone and done it. To deliver a true concert experience—assuming you’re not actually at the Warped Tour—the side windows have been replaced with custom-built fiberglass body panels each housing two Infinity eight-inch speakers. A 50-inch flat-panel monitor on the roof provides visuals. The requisite multicolor custom paint job with airbrushed graphics and 20-inch rollers are in place, and a slide-out BBQ ensures maximum scarfage. Best of all is the Warped Tour hood ornament, which will inevitably become a keepsake for the first sticky-fingered fan who comes across it.

DJ Booth Soul

Rides Magazine may have gone to great lengths to outfit the DJ Booth Soul with the all the latest and greatest audio gear, but it’s the minimalistic, three-spoke 19-inch Rotiform BRU wheels that make the biggest statement here. Taken with the ARK lowering springs and the purple paint, they manage to look retro without appearing tired, and could have been designed for the Soul from the start. Pioneer supplies two wheels of the DJ’ing variety, the mix channeled to five amplifiers and then out to three component speakers, two 10-inch and two 12-inch Champion Series subwoofers, and a sound bar housing four speakers of its own. The open roof allows budding mix-masters to stand tall, although the Maschine Mikro production studio molded into the passenger dash puts every control at your fingertips while seated, too.

Music Memorabilia Soul

The music industry never tires of bestowing itself with awards and accolades and deifying its top earners, and to commemorate the commemorations, the Music Memorabilia Soul is finished in platinum silver paint and features gold exhaust tips and 20-inch HRE wheels intended to evoke the gold (and platinum) records awarded to the industry’s top sellers. It’s also a rolling museum of sorts, displaying artifacts from all manner of music movers and shakers. Items on display in the Soul’s Plexiglas enclosures include a guitar signed by Slash, a G-Unit sneaker with Fitty’s autograph, a Jimi Hendrix gold album, and a signed mic from John Legend.

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Amped Soul

When the Kia Amped Soul concept ran into packaging complications while fitting the club style audio system, they simply pulled out the sawzall and removed the passenger-side B-pillar. That an otherwise key structural element would be so casually discarded in order to turn a Kia Soul into a “full size boom box on wheels” pretty much epitomizes the true spirit of SEMA. Rear hinged in a clamshell fashion, the doors contain JBL Pro Live speakers, and there’s a portable platform that musicians can use to show off their chops. When parked in display mode, the Kia’s 22-inch Forgiato custom three-piece wheels with Hankook 245/30/22 tires rest atop four 12-inch Infinity subwoofers housed in what must be extra-heavy-duty enclosures. Blacked-out windows and ambient LED interior lighting finish off the treatment.

The Voice Soul
Within minutes of the first airing of the TV show The Voice, it was clear that it would only be a matter of time until the show’s trademark loungers began to infiltrate other avenues of design, pop culture, and life. In this instance, four replicated red coaches’ chairs are added to the Soul’s interior, which is trimmed out in contrast-stitched red leather and black suede. The overall effect is not unlike the waiting room of the “Space Brothel” episode on the original Star Trek series. The exterior gets a bright-red airbrushed The Voice logo on the side—it’s vinyl on the window portion—as well as the words “I Want You” illuminated in the lower grille. (As in the show, you can illuminate the message using a red button, which here is on the dash, perfect for declarative stalking.) LED puddle-lamp projectors illuminate the people you’ve stepped on to get here. Twenty-inch three-piece rollers wear Falken tires. An iPad Mini and a 40-inch TV allow folks to access The Voice‘s app, and also karaoke to their hearts’ content through the car’s speakers. Your neighbors will love you.

Kia Has a Soul Pushing NBC's

2013 SEMA Show full coverage

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