We’re used to seeing teasers being published by automakers days, weeks, or months before the actual debut. However, Kia is doing things differently. The company’s first-ever global pickup won’t go on sale until later in 2025, but here it is, attending a car show in South Korea. Named Tasman, the mid-size truck is making a colorful splash at the 2024 Busan Motor Show.

Since this isn’t an actual reveal, the Ford Ranger rival is cloaked in a special livery penned by artist Richard Boyd-Dunlop. Kia intentionally left some parts of the body exposed to highlight the plastic cladding around the square wheel arches. We can also spot the vertical headlights, a pair of tow hooks, all-round disc brakes, and 17-inch wheels with six lug nuts. The alloys come wrapped in chunky BF Goodrich All-Terrain T/A tires.

By the looks of it, Kia didn’t bring a near-production prototype. The absence of calipers tells us those brakes are fake. The fully enclosed underbody indicates the truck was missing suspension components. However, the design is the final one, right down to the tiny cameras mounted below the side mirrors for the blind spot system.

Hiding in plain sight, the steps integrated into the corners of the rear bumper provide access to what appears to be a decent-sized bed. The taillights are quite small in relation to the wide rear end, which seems to have a split tailgate. Kia applied a dark tint to the windows to conceal the interior, but the cabin was exposed weeks ago in a video published on TikTok. In case you haven’t seen it, we’ve attached it below.

The Korean brand remains tight-lipped about the engines, but reports state a turbodiesel, 2.2-liter four-pot will be offered with 4×2 and 4×4 configurations as well as an eight-speed automatic transmission. The jury is still out on whether a V-6 is going to be available to better fight the Volkswagen Amarok, Toyota Hilux, and other mid-size trucks.

 

Aside from all-terrain capabilities, the Tasman will offer a payload capacity of about 2,200 pounds and should be able to tow as much as 7,700 pounds. A purely electric derivative is said to be in the works for a launch in late 2026. This truck won’t be Kia’s only body-on-frame vehicle since the Mohave/Borrego is still around, although likely not for long.

As for size, it’s supposedly larger than a Ranger but smaller than an F-150. Kia has previewed the Tasman strictly with a dual cab body style but a single cab and a chassis cab could be coming as well.

Although the pickup was recently spied testing in the United States, it’s unclear whether it will be sold here. On a related note, a separate fully electric pickup was caught in the US this year as well.

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Last Update: July 2, 2024

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