Although the low-cost Hyundai i10 won’t make it to Australia, its premium sibling from Kia will, the company has confirmed. The 2016 Kia Picanto has been confirmed to be launched in the Oceanic market. The supermini will be launched likely in Q1 2016.
“It has taken a while to put all the ducks in a row, but now it is full steam ahead for what we see as a very exciting new entrant to the market,” Kia Australia Chief Operating Officer, Damien Meredith, said.
He further added: “Realistically, it is likely that Picanto will be on sale in the first quarter of next year. It is not one of the larger segments of the Australian new car market but we definitely see an opportunity for a quality product like Picanto.”
The car will be launched with just one trim level and engine specification. Power will come from a 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol engine capable of producing 86 hp and 123 Nm of torque. Sadly, it will be paired to a 4-speed automatic gearbox. Like the 3-door bodystyle, the 5-speed manual gearbox also will be off the list for Australia.
The standard features in the car will include cloth seat, radio/CD/MP3 stereo system, USB/aux input with iPod cable, power windows, remote central locking, ABS with EBD and BAS, dual front and side airbags and the electronic stability programme (ESP).
If Australia gets the range-topping EX trim sold in New Zealand, where the Picanto has been on sale for quite some time, then customers will also get reversing sensors, LED daytime lights, LED tail lights, front and rear fog lights, 6 speakers, steering-mounted controls, Bluetooth connectivity and automatic headlights.
Whoever buys the 5-door hatchback will get Kia’s 7-year warranty, 7-year capped-price servicing and 7-year roadside assist. Price of the car hasn’t been revealed but it will be in the region of AU$15,000. The Picanto will compete with the likes of Suzuki Celerio and Mitsubishi Mirage in Australia – both of which are available with manual transmission and have a lower starting price.