Spy shots of the Kia SP that surfaced online last week had practically revealed the exterior design the new midsize SUV in its entirety. One of the key new details on the example spied was the production-spec SP2i’s name, and that has now been officially confirmed. Kia Seltos is the name of the production version of the SP Concept, which was revealed at the 2018 Auto Expo.
The Seltos name finds its roots in Greek mythology. It’s named after Celtus, the son of Hercules, and the ‘S’ in the improvised name stands for ‘speed, sportiness and strength’.
In an official statement, Manohar Bhat, head - marketing and sales, Kia Motors India, confirmed the Kia Seltos “very closely” matches the SP Concept. And while there are no specific details, Kia has also revealed the Seltos will feature connected car technologies, something that has been popularised of late by the Hyundai Venue and the MG Hector. Expect to see functions we’ve already seen on the Hyundai and MG – such as the ability to lock/unlock the vehicle and operate the climate control system using your smartphone – offered on the Kia Seltos.
As the spy shots have revealed, the Kia Seltos remains largely similar to the SP Signature concept (revealed at the 2019 Seoul motor show) in terms of design. It gets smaller, 18-inch wheels wrapped in 225/45-section Kumho tyres, even though the design of the dual-tone alloys remains the same. Sitting up front is the bold ‘Tiger Nose’ grille between sharp-looking LED headlights, connected by a LED light bar atop the grille.
The Kia Seltos in the spy pictures wore the T-GDi and 4WD badges, which indicates there will be a turbo-petrol, four-wheel drive version on offer in some markets. One of the interior sketches Kia revealed recently showed off what looked like a drive mode selector with ‘Off-Road’ marked on top of the dial, which indicates the Seltos will also have a certain degree of off-road ability.
Equipment on offer with the Kia Seltos is likely to include a large touchscreen infotainment system, a 360-degree camera, wireless charging and in-car Wi-Fi. A head-up display and an ambient lighting package will also likely be on offer on the top-spec variant.
At launch, the Kia Seltos’ engine options are expected to include a 1.5-litre petrol and a 1.5-litre diesel. The engines are likely to be BS6-ready but could be BS4-compliant at launch; both will be available with a choice of manual and automatic transmissions. Kia is even working on a sportier variant of the Seltos that features a 140hp, 1.4-litre turbo-petrol engine paired to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox; it also gets paddleshifters.
At launch, in the months following its global premiere on June 20, the Kia Seltos is expected to be priced in the range of Rs 10-16 lakh (ex-showroom). At that price point, the Seltos will rival the Hyundai Creta, Nissan Kicks, Renault Captur, Tata Harrier, and even the lower variants of the Jeep Compass and the upcoming MG Hector.
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