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Is this our first hint of the Kia ute? Tough Mohave SUV sports pick-up-style ladder-frame chassis


Kia last week pulled the covers off its tough Mohave SUV, but the bigger news for Australia could be lurking just beneath the surface, with the Korean brand's latest off-roader sporting a ladder-frame chassis. 

Kia has made no secret of the fact the brand's new ute - expected to begin testing in Australia as soon as 2021 - will be a proper body-on-frame pick-up, and suggested a yet-to-be-revealed SUV spun off the same platform was on the "wish list".

This is actually the second-generation Mohave, with its predecessor (and seemingly this one, too) powered by a 3.0-litre V6 diesel good for around 190kW and 560Nm. That engine was paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox and a proper 4WD system with low range.

Kia in Korea is yet to reveal any further details about the Mohave, though we do know already that this is car is left-hand-drive only. That not only rules it out for us, but it would take major engineering work to provide the right-hand-drive vehicle that is on Kia Australia's wish list.  

"(A ladder-frame SUV) has been on our wish-list, but it's something that hasn't been discussed with HMC. But it's certainly on our wish list," Kia's Australia COO, Damien Meredith, told CarsGuide last month. 

"There are many plans for the future ladder-frame platform, and it's under study at the moment on what essentially could be the platform for the group for the future pick-up if it is developed."