Kia reveals new Stonic
Both styling and chassis are claimed to be tuned for European tastes and the so-called 'Targa-style' roof can be had in five contrasting colours to the bodywork. Kia claims that the Euro-friendly chassis tuning means an 'exciting drive, with immediate handling responses and a stable ride.'
Inside, the cabin clearly draws heavily on both the new Rio and the next-generation Ka cee'd, albeit with some slightly jazzier trim elements. The big central screen comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while other options include heated front seats, keyless entry and cruise control. Space should be decent - Kia says that the shoulder room is class-leading and the boot is a reasonable 352 litres in volume, which is about average for the compact crossover class.
The Kia Stonic will come with a choice of four engines, from entry-level naturally-aspirated 1.25- and 1.4-litre petrol options to Kia's 120hp 1.0-litre T-GDI turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine, and a 1.6 diesel - though the Irish offering has yet to be confirmed.
On the safety front, it comes as standard with both Electronic Stability Control and Vehicle Stability Management. Safety options will include Autonomous Emergency Braking with pedestrian recognition and Forward Collision Alert; Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert; and Lane Departure Warning System. Backed by a new camera system, Stonic offers High Beam Assist and Driver Attention Warning, too. Kia also says that the body shell, which incorporates a 51 per cent mix of high-strength steel, is exceptionally safe in an impact.
Michael Cole, Chief Operating Officer of Kia Motors Europe, comments: "The Kia Stonic will be one of the most compelling new cars in this rapidly-expanding class, backed by Kia's unique warranty, and the brand's reputation for reliability, quality and contemporary design. As the segment expands, the Stonic looks set to become one of our best-selling cars. By volume, the B-SUV market is expected to overtake the C-SUV segment by 2020, when more than one in ten new cars sold in Europe will be from the Stonic's segment. The B-SUV segment attracts buyers from across the spectrum, with 21 per cent of all customers upsizing from a supermini, and another 15 per cent downsizing from their family hatchbacks. Cars like the Stonic also appeal to those looking to replace their compact MPVs."
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