If you had seen Michael Jordan passing you on the highway in a Kia 20 years ago, you would likely assume your eyes were playing tricks on you. Kia, which now is second only to Porsche in initial quality and has taken home a slew of awards in recent years, hasn’t always been a major player in North America. But whatever you do, don’t tell Lebron James he doesn’t drive a Kia these days: he might make fun of you on national television.
When Lebron became the face of Kia’s flagship K-900 last year, internet commenters came out of the woodwork to cast doubts about whether one of the greatest players in NBA history actually drives a Kia, or whether he is simply paid to appear in one for advertisements. King James and Kia have recently teamed up for a new campaign to take these spurious allegations to task, pulling no punches about Lebron’s love of the K-900.
As it turns out, it was Lebron who approached Kia about a partnership, and not the other way around. Lebron saw, tested, and fell in love with Kia’s luxury sedan, and then did what any of us would probably do in his position: he started a conversation to get himself a free car. As the official automotive sponsor of the NBA (Lebron is a previous winner of the KIA MVP award,) Kia understandably handed over the keys.
So if you’re ever in doubt that a world-class athlete would drive a Kia around town, keep those doubts to yourself; you might get challenged to a game of one-on-one by Lebron.