DEL MAR, CA – Consider this: South Korea’s Kia Motors Ltd. was bankrupt just six years ago, its fate uncertain. Ford Motor Co., which at one time owned 10% of Kia – 20% if Mazda Motor Corp.’s 10% is included – took a look and passed. Only a takeover by Hyundai Motor Co. Ltd. saved the company. What a difference a few years can make. Kia, which roughly translates into “rising out of Asia,” once again is on the rise. Known chiefly for low-price, entry-level vehicles, Kia in December took ...

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