KIA PICANTO 1,2 SMART
The first two generations captured the hearts of local buyers. Will the new Picanto repeat this feat?
W11,45 sec 61 kw/122 N.m 155 km/h here do you draw the line between a totally new vehicle and a substantial facelift? The Picanto, Kia’s latest addition to the South African market, is a case in point. Kia calls it a new-generation model and, certainly from a design point of view, it is exactly that with a nose, tail and every single body panel different to its predecessor. With a larger tigernose grille, angular front bumper and sharper headlamp design, Kia design guru Peter Schreyer has given the Picanto a more aggressive appearance. That said, changes to the rear lamp and bumper design deviate less from those of the previous model. 6,0 L/100 km 116 g/km
Under the skin, the changes are more minor. The Picanto shares its platform and engine line-up with the outgoing model. Therefore, at rst glance, all the new car appears to offer is a fresh exterior/interior design and an improved spec level. Well, not quite. For one thing, 44% of the new Picanto’s body is now composed of Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS) that, promises Kia, makes it more rigid. With a static torsional stiffness increase of 32%, it is safer, too. Then there are the changes to its dimensions. Despite being based on the previous car’s platform, Kia has fettled the measurements and, while it may be the same length as the previous car, the wheelbase and rear overhang have increased by 15 mm and 10 mm respectively, while the front overhang has been shortened by 25 mm. It’s also 5 mm taller, with ground clearance decreased by 11 mm. Inside, the dashboard has been raised by 15 mm to offer more kneeroom.