Kia is getting a head start generating buzz around its 2010 New York auto show offerings, with a set of conceptual sketches of its upcoming Magentis. Magentis not ringing a bell? Perhaps you're more familiar with the sedan's North American nameplate: the Kia Optima.
The Optima appears to be receiving some rather substantial changes for the next generation, although the previous design was so forgettable that we're having a hard time calling up a mental image. Changes include increased width and length, while simultaneously lowering the roof line for a more coupe-like profile, a la Volkswagen CC. Up front, the Optima receives a grill and light combo that is very reminiscent of the Forte Koup. Out back, the sedan features wrap-around tail lamps, dual exhausts, and some complex sheet metal creasing.
Surprisingly, Kia claims that the next-gen Optima will go on sale as early as autumn 2010 in non-European markets (that means us). We're not sure whether that release date will include the rumored Kia hybrid drivetrain, or if that will be a mid-cycle refresh. It'll be interesting to see how these sketches pan out in three dimensions when the Magentis/Optima debuts in New York in April, 2010.