Kia Motors, the South Korean auto brand recently clocked 100,000 car sales in just a year's time of making their India debut. To achieve this milestone, Kia offered world class products at affordable price tags. After the success of the Kia Seltos and Kia Carnival, the carmaker is now ready with another such offering for the Indian market, this time a compact SUV and has named it Sonet. Here's our first impressions of the design.
After the success of Seltos Mid-SUV, Kia is now aiming at the Compact SUV segment, which is the most competitive, yet most lucrative segment for the Indian buyers. And one of the most important factors for any compact SUV buyer is the design.
Up front is the signature tiger nose grille flanked by distinctive Crown Jewel LED headlamps and ‘Heartbeat’ LED DRLs. The prominent skid plate and large fog lamp housing adds to the bulk upfront. On the side is a sub 4 metre body packed neatly to create a masculine look. There are roof rails, alloy wheels and body cladding to add the mass.
However, it’s the rear that stands out in the segment thanks to a connected taillight unit with ‘Heartbeat’ LED tail lamps, dual muffler design and a large skid plate. While the Kia Sonet looks appealing in the regular trim which Kia is calling Tech Line, it’s even more eye catching in the GT Line, as we predicted during the 2020 Auto Expo, where the Sonet was displayed for the first time.
What changes in the GT-Line Trim is a extra dash of sportiness thanks to black high glossy Grille with GT Line logo and red accents on the front, Piano Black finish at the rear, Skid Plates with red accents among others. Overall the Kia Sonet is the most futuristic looking small SUV in India.
Speaking of the cabin of the Kia Sonet, it is full of segment-first features (30 to be precise). Not just features, the design is also segment best, to say the least. The centre of the attraction is the 10.25 inch HD Touchscreen infotainment system which is the largest in the segment. The vertically stacked AC vents are placed below the system flanking the AC control buttons among others. BOSE Premium 7-speaker system has been added to enhance the acoustic experience inside the car.
Smart Pure Air Purifier with Virus Protection, Front Driver & Passenger Ventilated Seats, LED Sound Mood Lamps, Smartphone Wireless charger with Cooling Function are some of the stand out features from the exhaustive list. Kia Sonet also gets brand’s UVO connectivity system with 57 commands including Remote Engine Start for both Automatic and Manual Transmission.
In the GT Line trim, while the rest of the cabin remains the same, there's a D-cut steering wheel adding to its sporty appeal with red stitching on the wheel itself, seats and door armrest. In terms of safety features, Kia Sonet gets Six Airbags, ABS with EBD, Hill assist, TPMS and more.
Kia Motors is offering the Sonet with a 1.2-litre petrol, a 1.5-litre diesel and a 1.0-litre turbo engine options. However, the highlight is the gearbox, which is a 6-speed iMT Technology or intelligent manual transmission. The gearbox helps you to shift the gear like a manual transmission in the H-format without the use of clutch. There's also a 5-speed manual gearbox, a DCT gearbox and a 6-speed AT gearbox on offer. We will soon be driving the SUV to understand how good are the driving dynamics.
If Kia Motors is able to match the driving dynamics of the Kia Seltos in the upcoming Sonet, we have a potential winner in the segment. The Kia Sonet looks eye catching, has some unique and interesting features and of course, Kia's build quality. How good is to drive, we can only tell you in few days time. For now, we are impressed with the overall design of the Kia Sonet, both inside and out. Keep reading News18 Auto for detailed review soon.