Kia Hits The Road For The Vans Warped Tour

Kia Warped Tour Kia Motors America has signed up for a second year as auto sponsor of the Vans Warped Tour, a multi-city music, extreme sports, skateboarding and youth culture fair with several music stages, events and products. Both Kia and the Warped Tour are in their 15th year.

Kia, which is doing similar programs with the National Basketball Association, has extended more heavily into lifestyle marketing in recent years. The new arrangement with Vans has Kia hosting and sponsoring on-site events and activities during each stop. The tour -- which began in Pomona, Calif. on Friday -- hits more than 40 markets nationwide through the summer, and features over 100 bands from signed, nationally known acts to local, unsigned performers.

The Irvine, Calif.-based Kia will have a tent featuring a live MC, tattoo artists, a "Bare Your Soul" video confessional and other activities dangling Kia Motors merchandise and giveaways, as well as wristbands access to a VIP riser in front of the main stage.



Kia is also sponsoring a blog, "Words of Steve," written by someone who is traveling around with the tour at the behest of Kia -- which is integrating the blog with a promotion, "A New Way to Roll" for a chance to twin a 2010 Kia Soul; and the "Warped 15" sweepstakes for the chance to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the 15th anniversary concert event in Los Angeles. Fans can enter to win online or by visiting the Kia Motors tent at tour stops.

Kia Motors is also presenting sponsor of a solar-powered performance stage called "Kia Kevin Says Stage," devoted to local, up-and-coming and unsigned artists.

The vehicles that Kia will spotlight with the effort are the Soul and Forte. Advertising for the former launched in February. David and Goliath handles Kia advertising. Media is handled by Innocean, formerly World Marketing Group.

Kia, which has been a sponsor of the NBA for about a year and a half, has also delved into tennis in the past, with sponsorship of British tennis, the Australian Open Grand Slam tournament, and the Davis Cup.

The company promoted Soul via a video game marketing program with Xbox 360 and Xbox LIVE, in April. That effort included a national sweepstakes, sponsorship of the game E3 on Xbox LIVE, and Xbox's NBA Live 09 in June.

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