Kia Motors announced its foray into the Indian market by unveiling the Seltos mid-SUV. The company wants to mark its presence in the mainstream market, and it may be developing a compact MPV to rival against the likes of Maruti Suzuki Ertiga and Mahindra Marazzo. Expect it to be priced in the bracket of Rs 8-13 lakhs (ex-showroom).
This all-new MPV is likely to use a modified version of the Kia Seltos’ platform. However, the platform may be tweaked to increase its wheelbase, and front and rear track. The vehicle’s electrical architecture, too, is expected to be similar to the Kia Seltos. The idea is to offer class-leading head and knee room, and flexible seating options with a capacity to seat seven people comfortably.
Now, we don’t have an exact launch timeline, but given the market scenario and Kia’s aggressive plans for India, we can expect the Kia MPV to be launched sometime in 2021. Moreover, it will be positioned below the Kia Grand Carnival.
Kia already has a compact MPV in the global markets, which is the Carens. However, the India-bound Kia MPV will likely be developed ground-up, and apart from the domestic market, it will also cater to other Southeast Asian markets like Indonesia. The MPV will be manufactured locally to cater to the needs of the domestic market.
It’s too early to speak about the powertrain options, but it is safe to assume that when launched, the Kia MPV will come with the Seltos-sourced 1.5-litre petrol and diesel engines. Both the motors could come with a manual as well as automatic transmissions. So, expect the petrol model to get a CVT and the diesel version to come with a six-speed torque converter. A six-speed manual will likely be standard across. That said, the sportier 1.4-litre TGDI petrol motor is highly unlikely to make its way into the MPV.