Kia SP SUV will take on Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier and Nissan Kicks; launch in the second half of 2019
Kia Motors India will commence its local innings with a compact SUV scheduled for launch in the second half of next year. The sister brand of Hyundai will begin production of its first model in early 2019 at its Anantapur facility in Andhra Pradesh and it is based on the SP concept showcased at the 2018 Auto Expo in Greater Noida.
The South Korean brand announced its long term intentions for the Indian market by displaying its entire product range at the motoring exhibition and is conducting roadshows to attract potential buyers and dealers across the country ahead of the fully fledged official entry.
Kia’s SP compact SUV won’t just be restricted to India as it has global importance for the brand with markets like North America is a primary target. Having already been spotted testing in India and elsewhere, we can expect the production model to break covers in an international motoring show in early 2019.
Upon arrival, the five-seater will compete against the likes of Hyundai Creta, Renault Captur, upcoming Tata Harrier and Nissan Kicks among others. Logically speaking, it should share several elements with the Creta to keep the prices competitive as around Rs. 10-16 lakh is targetted (ex-showroom).
The yet unnamed compact SUV will herald a slew of launches from Kia, as the brand has reportedly planned one new vehicle for India every six months until 2022. Its global best-seller Sportage SUV could make its way into India in the near future, but the speculations surrounding a Vitara Brezza rival and an all-electric model refuse to fade away for 2020 and 2021 respectively.
Kia has made its preferences clear as it will target the volume based premium segments in India. Kia’s Picanto is based on i10 and Rio on i20 in overseas arena and they could be potential contenders for India as well. The Carnival premium MPV could also be introduced via CKD route to rival Toyota Innova Crysta and its launch was reportedly confirmed.