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Kia updates Picanto, turbo discontinued

More tech, new look for Kia’s pint-sized Picanto hatch, available locally from Q4

5 Jul 2023

KIA has released images and information relating to its new Picanto this week, the updated light hatch to introduce a new design and advanced technologies to the range.


Slated to arrive in Q4 of this year, Kia says the Picanto will “enable customers to experience a modern, purposeful ride in style and enjoy the freedom that movement brings”, in both baseline and GT Line grades.


Unfortunately for Aussie buyers, the zesty 74kW/172Nm Picanto GT 1.0-litre turbo will be discontinued, with Kia announcing two petrol engine choices for the updated model with displacements of 1.0 and 1.2 litres, specifications for which have not been advised.


Kia says both naturally aspirated options will “maximise efficiency and lower CO2 emissions”, and include revisions such as exhaust gas recirculation lines, optimised intake valve timing, and improved combustion chamber cooling.


Both engines drive the front wheels via a five-speed transmission, with a traditional manual or automated manual unit available.


Aimed at younger, first-car customers and working professionals alike, the Picanto comes with more standard features than ever before, and its driver assistance systems help make driving in busy cities easier.


Technological highlights include an 8.0-inch ‘floating’ touchscreen navigation system and a separate digital display for instrumentation, the former offering Bluetooth multi-connection capabilities, (optional) satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, a range of on-board services, voice recognition, and “seamless” over-the-air software updates.


Further, the Picanto introduces new ADAS, safety and convenience technologies including forward collision-avoidance assist with vehicle, cyclist, and pedestrian detection, blind-spot collision-avoidance assist, lane keeping assist, driver attention warning and leading vehicle departure warning, intelligent speed limit assist, and lane following assist.


Stylistically, the new Picanto is characterised by Kia’s ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy, gifting the pint-sized hatch with a new lighting signature and front bumper, updated front sheet metal and bonnet, optional LED headlights and DRLs, and a “simple and stable” rear design with vertical-set taillights.


The baseline Picanto arrives as standard with 14-inch steel wheels with 14-, 15- or 16-inch alloys available optionally. The GT Line variant features diamond-cut 16-inch alloys, as well as a sportier look and rear-end diffuser.


Kia will offer the Picanto in a choice of 10 paint finishes, including new hues Iced Illusion (pictured) and Rich Brown.


The Picanto (currently from $16,290 +ORC) is one of the few remaining contenders offered in the Micro passenger segment locally. The current model is the best-selling vehicle in its class, with a year-to-date tally of 2598 units – well ahead of the Fiat/Abarth 500 twins (347 units) and now-defunct Mitsubishi Mirage (1).


Further details on the 2024 Kia Picanto will be available closer to the model’s launch in Q4 of this year.

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