FRANKFURT -- Kia has unveiled its Europe-only XCeed compact crossover, which joins the hatchback, wagon and shooting brake variants in the Korean brand's Ceed family.
Sales of the XCeed will begin in the third quarter of 2019 and it will be built at Kia's plant in Zilina, Slovakia, alongside the rest of the Ceed's portfolio.
The XCeed is 85mm longer than the hatchback variant and 36mm taller, Kia said.
The coupe-styled crossover "merges the strengths of both hatchback and SUV," Kia Europe Chief Operating Officer Emilio Herrera said.
The XCeed's sporty design also makes it more desirable than many taller, larger SUVs without compromising on versatility because of its "intelligent packaging," he added.
The XCeed will be positioned above the Stonic small crossover in Kia's lineup and below the Sportage midsize SUV. It will compete against models such as the Volkswagen T-Roc, Toyota C-HR, Ford Focus Active and Renault Kadjar.
The XCeed will be offered at launch with a choice of 1.0-, 1.4- and 1.6-liter gasoline engines. A 1.6-liter diesel will also available. Electrified powertrains, including 48-volt mild hybrid and plug-in hybrid options, will join the Ceed family in early 2020.
"Production of the plug-in hybrid versions of both the XCeed and the [Ceed] station wagon will start in November and the cars will be on the market in January 2020," Herrera told Automotive News Europe.
November is also when Kia Europe will start production of the mild-hybrid version of the Ceed hatchback, Herrera said.
Mild-hybrid versions of other Ceed body styles might be launched later, depending on how much Kia will need them to meet the European Union's tougher fleet CO2 targets that start to take effect in 2020, Herrera told ANE.
Sales of the current three versions of the Ceed rose 32 percent to 42,625 in the first five months of 2019, according to JATO Dynamics
Prices for the XCeed will be announced in September, just before the car's public debut at the Frankfurt auto show, Kia said.