Kia Seltos will go on sale in late August and will be powered by three engine options with several segment-first features
Kia Motors India is kick-starting its domestic innings with 265 touchpoints in 160 cities – biggest for a new manufacturer – and is aiming to expand the reach to 350 touchpoints by 2021. Just as MG Motor is trying to achieve, Kia focusses on establishing the brand image firstly before widening its portfolio for customers.
The Seltos made its global debut yesterday in India as the global SUV will be launched in late August here before reaching other Asian as well as international markets. In a similar fashion to its parental organisation Hyundai with the segment-leading Creta, Kia will be offering the Seltos in a wide price bracket appealing to multiple bands of customers.
The Seltos will compete against Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier, Nissan Kicks, MG Hector and the likes. It will be offered in three engine (1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol, 1.5-litre turbo diesel and 1.4-litre turbo GDi petrol) and four transmission choices (six-speed MT on 1.5-litre engines as standard, seven-speed DCT in 1.4-litre GT Line, six-speed AT in 1.5-litre diesel and CVT in 1.5-litre petrol).
It will also get a long list of customisation options. The Seltos is expected to be priced between Rs. 12 lakh and Rs. 18 lakh (ex-showroom) making it cover audiences other than the SUV buyers. For instance, the Civic sitting in the price range between Rs. 17.72 lakh and Rs. 22.32 lakh and the Innova Crysta priced from Rs. 15 lakh to Rs. 24 lakh (ex-showroom) may consider the Seltos as an option if they are open to buying other body styles.
The Compass is the sole volume gatherer for Jeep in India and its popularity has certainly taken a hit in the last several months. The Seltos’ top-end variants could trouble the Compass as it will be loaded with modern technologies and in-car connective features. The SUV’s direct competitors Hyundai Creta and Tata Harrier are priced at Rs. 10-15.66 lakh and Rs. 13-16.7 lakh respectively (ex-showroom).
In a price sensitive market like India and on a lucrative segment, Kia should position the Seltos aggressively in our opinion as it promises to offer a lot on paper. Moreover, the compelling exterior and the well-made interior with good overall finish make it a force to reckon with in the mid-size SUV space.
The high-end variant will be sold with 10.25-inch touchscreen, eight-inch HUD, wireless charging, electronic parking brake, 360-degree camera, Kia’s UVO connect and other features. We haven’t yet seen how it drives though and wait for our comprehensive judgement until then.