Kia Motors, a Hyundai-owned South Korean automobile manufacturer, has unveiled the images of the new Picanto on its official website. The 2017 Kia Picanto will be first showcased at the Geneva Motor Show in March, 2017 and later the car will be launched globally. However, in India, the 5-door hatchback is likely to be launched in 2018.
The India-bound Kia Picanto is expected to be powered by a 1.2 litre 4-cylinder petrol engine that will produce around 85 hp of power and will be mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission. The company might also offer the Picanto with a 1.0 litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol unit that develops about 99 hp of power. The 1.0 litre engine will also power the new Kia Rio in international markets, however, there is no confirmation on the diesel motor yet.
The Kia Picanto has been designed by Kia's European Design Centre in Germany and features a new design language. The Picanto looks similar to the ongoing Hyundai Grand i10, but will get signature Kia design language along with the chrome finished Tiger-nose grille. The car will also get standard features like projector headlamps, vertically placed tail lamps and front fog lamps, while the rear parking sensors and rear defogger are expected to be offered on the higher trims.
Inside the cabin, the simple looking dashboard is dominated by a centrally mounted touchscreen infotainment system that features Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. These features might be offered on the higher variants when launched in India. The cabin of the car looks modern and premium, while the steering wheel will get audio mounted controls as well as telephone buttons.
The Kia Picanto scored 5-stars in the ANCAP (Australasian New Car Assessment Program) safety rating and will get standard features like dual front airbags and ABS (Antilock Braking System). The car will also be offered with 7-year unlimited kilometre warranty. Kia will launch the Picanto with Kia's sports-inspired 'GT-Line' that will get sporty equipment, both at the exterior and interior. The sportier version of the Picanto will boast of sculpted body lines, red accent on the front and rear fog lamp cluster and on the side of the car. The red accents will also be carried inside the cabin and the seats will get contrasting red and black seat material in favour of a sporty look.
The Kia Picanto, when launched in India, could be the first car in India by the automaker that is expected to be launched in 2018 and will rival against the likes of the Hyundai Grand i10, Ford Figo and Tata Tiago in the segment. The Picanto is one of the best selling hatchbacks in the company's portfolio in European markets presently. Kia has been mulling entry into the Indian market for long and the company is still to announce a location for its plant.