There’s no question that the Kia Seltos has shaken up the midsize SUV segment – it dethroned the previous reigning sales champ, the Hyundai Creta, very quickly, and is now the bestselling SUV currently on sale in India, with a whopping 15,000 units sold in January 2020. However, there are as many as 18 versions to choose from – which includes six powertrain options, two trim lines and eight variants – and prices range from Rs 9.89 lakh to Rs 17.34 lakh. Which version makes the most sense for you? Read on to know our pick of the range.
Which Kia Seltos engine-gearbox combination is right for you?
First off, let’s talk about the powertrains on offer. There are three engine options – a 115hp/144Nm 1.5-litre petrol, a 115hp/250Nm 1.5-litre turbo-diesel and a 140hp/242Nm 1.4-litre turbo-petrol unit. All have a 6-speed manual as standard, though each engine gets a unique automatic gearbox option. The 1.5 naturally aspirated petrol comes paired with a CVT, the 1.5 turbo-diesel has a 6-speed torque convertor unit, while the 1.4 turbo-petrol gets a 7-speed dual-clutch option.
The 1.5 petrol isn’t an exciting engine but its pep makes it friendly in town. Buyers who want a sportier experience will find a great match in the more powerful 1.4 petrol, though. The 1.5 diesel is refined and smooth but makes the most sense for buyers with a lot of running. As for the gearboxes, the manuals are likeable and come in at a lower price point too but if your commute includes congested roads, it’s the automatics that are worth the extra money.
What are the variants on offer?
Now, let’s take a look all the variants on offer and their prices:
From the table, we can see that the 1.4-litre turbo-petrol is only available in GT Line form while the 1.5 petrol and diesel come in HT Line guise. The 1.5 diesel-automatic is the only exception – it is also available in the range-topping GTX+ trim.
Even the entry-level Seltos HTE (Rs 9.89-10.34 lakh) gets kit such as ABS with EBD, dual front airbags, 16-inch steel wheels with covers, projector headlights with a follow-me-home function, all four disc brakes (diesel only), power windows, keyless entry, four speakers, steering-mounted controls, steering wheel tilt adjust and rear AC vents.
The Seltos HTK (Rs 10.29-11.49 lakh) adds the projector fog lights, power-adjustable ORVMs with in-built turn indicators, front USB charging, six speakers and a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
If you’d like features such as the 16-inch alloy wheels, LED mood lighting with sound effects, power folding mirrors, a rear wiper and washer, a smart key with push-button start and cruise control, shell out the extra outlay for the Seltos HTK+ (Rs 11.49-12.54 lakh). This variant is available in petrol-manual, diesel-manual and diesel-automatic form.
For about Rs 1.5 lakh more, you get the Seltos HTX (Rs 13.09-14.14 lakh), which comes in petrol-manual, petrol-automatic and diesel-manual guise. Along with safety kit like ISOFIX child-seat mounts and a tyre pressure monitoring system, this variant also gets features such as automatic LED headlamps with DRLs, ‘Ice cube’ LED fog lamps, an LED light bar, LED tail-lamps, 17-inch alloy wheels, leather-wrapped steering wheel, tilt and telescopic adjust for the steering, reclining rear seats with 60:40 split and adjustable headrests, a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, UVO connectivity features, USB ports for second row, wireless charging, automatic climate control and ambient mood lighting.
Add another Rs 1.2 lakh and you get the Seltos HTX+ (Rs 15.34-16.34 lakh), though it’s only available with the diesel-manual and diesel-automatic options. Features on this trim include six airbags, vehicle stability management (automatic only), hill-start assist (automatic only), ESC (automatic only), front parking sensors, eight-way power adjust for the driver’s seat, a 7.0-inch multi-info display, an eight-speaker Bose stereo sound system, 360-degree camera, ventilated seats, a sunroof and rain-sensing wipers.
The Seltos GT Line models come with slick crystal-cut alloy wheels, GT Line badging, red front brake calipers and red accents on the bumpers and sides in order to differentiate it from the Tech Line models. Interiors of GT Line models also feature red stitching on the seats, steering and gear lever.
The Seltos’ GT Line begins with the GTK (Rs 13.79 lakh), which gets standard features like ABS with EBD, dual front airbags, all four disc brakes, LED headlamps with DRLs and a follow-me-home function, LED light bar, LED fog lamps, LED tail-lamps, 17-inch alloy wheels, power-folding mirrors, keyless entry and go, automatic climate control, a tilt and telescopic adjustable leather-wrapped steering with controls for the audio system, cruise control, USB ports for the second row, reclining rear seats with 60:40 split, rear AC vents, an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay support, six-speaker Arkamys sound system, and a rear-view camera with guidelines. This variant is only available with the manual gearbox.
The Seltos GTX (Rs 15.29-16.29 lakh) – which is available with manual and automatic gearbox options – gets a total of six airbags, vehicle stability management, brake assist, hill-start assist, ESC, a tyre pressure monitoring system, 17-inch alloy wheels, wireless charging, rain-sensing wipers, an 8.0-inch head-up display, 7.0-inch Multi info display (instrument cluster), 10.25-inch HD touchscreen infotainment system and the UVO Connect in-car connectivity tech.
For Rs 1 lakh more, the Seltos GTX+ (Rs 16.29-17.34 lakh) adds in drive modes, front parking sensors, a blind spot monitor, sunroof, Bose eight-speaker sound system, eight-way powered driver’s seat, 360-degree camera and ventilated seats.
Which Kia Seltos variant is right for you?
The Kia Seltos range is a maze of variants but break it down as per your requirements and you’ll find the right version for the right money. Budget no constraint, it’s the 1.4 petrol-auto GTX+ that is our pick. It is a brilliant blend of performance and convenience, and the multiple feel-good features only add to the experience. If you associate SUVs with diesel engines or are simply a high-mileage user, the Seltos diesel is a great pick. Lower versions are priced well for what they get you, but be prepared to shell out fairly big money if you want added frills and an auto.
All said, it’s the Kia Seltos 1.5 petrol with the CVT automatic that’ll make great sense for typical urban buyers. The petrol engine and CVT are well matched and take the stress out of everyday driving. There’s only one variant on offer but it gets loads of goodies and can be had for sensible money. Add in the promise of decent fuel economy (claimed 16.8kpl) and the Seltos 1.5 petrol-auto makes a compelling buy.