Kia's new India-bound compact SUV caught testing

by Jaiveer Mehra, Autocar India 16 Nov 2019

Kia Motors, which is currently enjoying a robust run in the Indian market and already has a 4.85% share of the Utility Vehicle market, is readying its new product for this market. The Korea carmaker has been working on a compact SUV (codenamed QYI) to rival the likes of the Hyundai Venue and Maruti Vitara Brezza. Now, a prototype of the same has been caught testing in Korea and it reveals some details about this upcoming India-bound SUV.

The heavily disguised test mule gets the traditional upright styling that’s so liked by SUV buyers. Unlike other newer SUVs launched in India, Kia seems to have given the split-headlamp design a miss, with more conventional headlamp units sitting on either side of the brand’s tiger nose grille; lower down on the front bumper sit fog lamps. The model spotted seems to be either of a mid-spec or a lower variant; we expect top-spec variants to come with LED lights and Kia’s signature ice-cube styled fog lamps.

The rear of the upcoming Kia compact SUV looks heavily disguised, though the images do show a raked rear windshield and a little of the tail-lamps detailing. This, however, confirms that the Kia compact SUV will get a completely new and more rounded body shell, as opposed to the Hyundai Venue’s more squarish design.

While the model is expected to share its underpinnings with the Hyundai Venue, Kia has done enough to give the model a distinctive look, including changes to the window line, especially near the rear quarter-glass. Completing the exterior look are 16-inch wheels that are interestingly shod with Apollo 215/60 R16 tyres, which are also do duty on the Hyundai Venue.

There were no images of the car’s interior, though you can see a third adjustable headrest for the rear-centre occupant. Compared to the rest of its rivals, expect the compact SUV’s cabin to be a more upmarket affair – given Kia’s positioning as a premium brand of parent company Hyundai – along with plenty of kit on offer.

Engine options are likely to include turbocharged petrol and diesel engine options, with the India-spec model expected to share its engines with the Venue.

The Kia compact SUV will most likely be Kia Motors' third model in India, following the Carnival MPV launch that will take place in the coming months.

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