South Korean car giant Kia plans to "attack" the premium market in the UK and to take on the likes of Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

Paul Philpott, president and chief executive of Kia UK, told IBTimes UK that the company has moved from the low-price, budget end of the market to the mainstream.

Now Philpott said the manufacturer, which started selling cars in the UK in 1991, competes "with all of the mainstream brands".

"But we also believe that's an opportunity now to start to attack some of the premium brands, the premium German brands, who have done so well for many in the country, growing themselves a big market share," he said.

The plan will follow Kia's advertising campaigns at high-profile sporting events, including the Australian Open Tennis Championships and a commercial during this year's Super Bowl.

The chief executive explained that sports marketing was "critical" to raise awareness of the company.

"It's really important for us to engage with customers who see us as a big brand, see us as a brand that can support major sporting events," Philpott said.

"It also adds to our brand image – being associated with Surrey County Cricket Club has that dynamic, sporty image."

Watch the video above to find out Philpott's thoughts on interest rates, Kia's new SUV range and the customers who buy his cars.