Finally, the all-new Kia Picanto is now available in the Philippines.
The latest iteration of the Korean carmaker's small hatch, first seen in January this year, made its local debut earlier today via a simple launch event held in SM Megamall. Boasting sleek modern looks and a playful vibe, it immediately strikes us as one of the most attractive vehicles in its segment.
First impressions? Outside, most of what we saw from this year's Geneva International Motor Show managed to make its way here. Specifically, the Philippine-spec GT-Line variant (yes, it's here too) flaunts the same red accents and sporty body kit seen abroad. Minus the wheel design, they're identical. Up front, it sports a redesigned tiger nose grille and an aggressive fascia, plus modern headlamps with LED daytime running lights.
Regular variants feature a tamer bodykit and no red accents. Other than that, its looks relatively the same. Overall, you can expect a look akin to the recently-launched Kia Rio.
Inside, the Picanto features plenty of hard, albeit well-done and high-quality plastics. White trim around the aircon vents add a nice, quirky touch to the cabin, and the car still features the same basic head unit seen in other Kias. The seats are fabric, and the steering wheel features a premium feel thanks to intricate stitching and nice material. All this may seem a little bare compared to what we saw earlier this year, but it's an impressive and refined interior nonetheless.
The Picanto can be had with either of two engines. The high-end GT-Line variants and mid SL variant come equipped with a 1.2-liter engine capable of 82hp and 121Nm mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. The base variant packs a 1.0-liter engine (output figures to follow) and a manual transmission. Below are the official prices:
*Kia Picanto 1.0L MT SL – P625,000
*Kia Picanto 1.2L AT SL – P685,000
*Kia Picanto 1.2L AT GT – P787,000
You can check out more of the all-new Picanto in the photos below. So, do you think it was worth the wait?
UPDATE as of June 12, 2018: Thankfully, those considering the brand's most popular models will be happy to know that the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law's effect on its lineup isn't too drastic. The biggest jump in cost belongs to the mid-level Sportage SL diesel. In 2017, the crossover went for P1,395,000, now it's priced at P1,475,000—that's an P80,000 increase. This is followed by the top-of-the-line Soul (up by P45,000), and the double cab, air-conditioned version of its K2500 light commercial truck (up by P37,000). Other than the models mentioned above, no Kia vehicle saw an increase in price over P30,000. The popular Picanto city hatch's GT-Line variant only increased by P11,000, and the Rio 1.4 GL subcompact hatchback by P20,000. With the exception of its 11-seat model, the Grand Carnival maintained its 2017 pricing, too.