Kia Motors has finally pulled the wraps off the Seltos compact SUV – its first offering for the Indian market. The Kia Seltos is a compact SUV that was first showcased as the SP concept at the 2018 Auto Expo. We are happy to report that not a lot has changed since then and the final production-spec version does emerge as a handsome, rugged yet urban offering that will compete against a host of offerings. The Seltos will go on sale in August this year, and while we’ve had a comprehensive look at the car at the unveil, the automaker is holding back some of the juicier details for the commercial launch. We list down all that we know about the Kia Seltos and so should you.
The Kia Seltos is a handsome looking SUV and quite well proportioned too. The teasers conveyed a bold looking model and the final production form certainly impresses. It is a global SUV after all, and the model takes cues from Kia’s global design language. The automaker’s signature tiger nose grille takes prominence up front and comes with sharply styled LED headlamps and vertical fog lights. The muscular shoulder-line also adds to the appearance, while the full LED taillights stretching from end-to-end are smartly designed and connected by a chunky chrome bar. There’s tasteful use of chrome across the exterior that grabs a lot of attention. The SUV rides on crystal cut alloy wheels that look premium and add to the overall upmarket look of the SUV. There are eight colours available with five dual-tone options, which customers can personalise to their tastes. The Seltos will be offered in both standard and GT Line options.
Kia is yet to fully reveal the cabin on the Seltos but has confirmed a number of features on the well-styled offering. The SUV will come with ambient lighting, multi-function steering wheel, climate control, 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as features like a head-up display (HUD), electronic parking brake, wireless charging, cruise control and more. A five-seater, the Seltos also promises ample cargo space, even as dimensions are yet to be announced.
The Kia Seltos will draw power from a 1.4-litre T-GDI turbo petrol engine that will come paired with a 7-speed dual clutch automatic transmission. There will also be all-new 1.5-litre petrol and diesel engines available at the time of launch. These are, as the automaker calls, the third generation Smartstream engines and are BS6 compliant promising high efficiency and powerful performance. The power figures though are yet to be revealed. The company has confirmed that there will four transmission options available – IVT (Intelligent continuously variable transmission), 7-step DCT, 6-speed AT and a 6-speed manual transmission.
The Seltos will be offered with multiple driving modes – Normal, Eco and Sport – that will tweak the steering response or improve efficiency, depending on the mode. There’s also a terrain management system that lets drivers choose between mud, wet and sand mode, depending on the surface.
UVO Connected Car Tech
Keeping up with the times, the Kia Seltos is equipped with the UVO connected car technology that adds about 37 smart features to the SUV across five categories including navigation, safety and security, vehicle management, remote control and convenience. The UVO connect will be free for the first three years for its users, according to the company, and offer access to geofencing, vehicle tracking, stolen vehicle notification, tracking and immobilisation, vehicle telematics, AI voice command, auto collision notification, SOS emergency assistance, remote start-stop and more. Owners can also remotely operate the air purifier in the car and monitor air quality. The UVO technology can be summoned via a dedicated button on the IRVM with a dedicated SOS button that connects you to a call centre – in case of an emergency.
The Kia Seltos uses 73 per cent advanced high strength steel in its construction and uses the hot stamping for manufacturing components, which is a segment first. The model is loaded with active and passive safety tech on the top variants including six airbags, ABS, ESC, Hill Assist Control, Vehicle Stability Management, traction control, brake assist and more. The Seltos also gets a 360-degree camera with blind view mirror as another segment-first feature. There’s also a driving rear-view monitor, in addition to front and rear parking sensors. Other passive safety features include rain sensing wipers and auto headlamps on the Seltos.
The Kia Seltos is a made-in-India, made-for-the-world product and will be manufactured at the automaker’s new facility in Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh. The company will commence production in the following weeks with the plant’s installed capacity at three lakh units per annum. The Seltos will be produced here to not only meet the domestic demand but also shipped overseas to markets like Latin America, the Middle East and other parts of Asia. Exports of the SUV begin by the fourth quarter of 2019.
Kia Motors India will be commencing sales for the Seltos from August this year with 265 touchpoints across 160 cities. The automaker plans to further expand its presence to 300 outlets by 2020 and will add 50 more by 2021, expanding in Tier 1, 2, 3 and even 4 markets. Starting with the Seltos, Kia plans to have five launches by 2021 in India across varied segments.
Kia Motors India says the Seltos sees high levels of local content going in, which will keep the prices competitive. While the automaker hasn’t revealed the prices yet, it has conveyed a price range between ₹ 11 lakh and ₹ 17 lakh (ex-showroom), which makes things aggressive in a highly competitive segment. At this price point, the Seltos will take on a number of offerings including the Tata Harrier, Hyundai Creta, Jeep Compass, MG Hector, Mahindra XUV500, Nissan Kicks, Renault Captur and more. Bookings for the Seltos will commence from the second week of July.
We will have to wait till the launch in August to know in-depth about the new Kia Seltos and will bring you all the updates on the new offering. Keep watching this space for all the action.
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