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Kia Optima loses top and adds suicide doors for SEMA

Four-door convertibles are a rarity, but at the annual Specialty Equipment Market Association trade show in Las Vegas, they’re just par for the course. Every year, manufacturers put together unique builds to showcase what they are capable of, and Kia is coming in hot for 2015. Inspired by the Florida A1A highway, the Korean automaker is chopping the roof off its 2016 Optima sedan. The custom teal paint, shaved down windshield and suicide rear doors add a sporty look to the traditionally sedate sedan. The ride height has been lowered and the A1A Optima sits on chrome 20-inch wheels and a Ksport coilover suspension.

The body structure has been strengthened with hidden reinforced steel tubes to retain the rigidity usually lost in convertible models. The 245-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine is the same one found in the production model, but Kia has bolted on a high-performance exhaust.

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Inside, front and rear off-white leather bucket seats provide room for four sunbathers. The rear seats are separated by extended armrests and a custom center console.

As with many custom cars found at SEMA, don’t expect to see the A1A Optima go into production anytime soon, if at all. Some design elements may make it into future models, but the vehicles themselves are mostly one-offs. You can look for new variants of the Optima, however. At this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, Kia announced that it will be expanding the Optima lineup to include a station wagon and plug-in hybrid.

Kia has already teased other SEMA-bound vehicles, including the Forte Koup Mud Bogger concept and the Pacwest Adventure Sorento. The latter is described as a “tough, off-road utility vehicle equipped with custom suspension, snorkel intake system and a paint scheme inspired by the lush forests of the region.” Kia plans to unveil a total of six vehicles at SEMA on Tuesday, Nov. 3.