Kia Seltos – As Mighty As Its Namesake
Auto Tech Review|September 2019
Named after Celtos – the son of Hercules, Kia’s first India offering has finally rolled off the production line. The Kia Seltos draws its name from the mythical Greek character as well as facets that modern day car buyers are looking out for – sporty and stylish. With the origins of this quirky moniker out of the way, we can safely tell you that the Kia Seltos should set the new benchmark for competition in this segment. The Seltos is a compact SUV that will contend in a rapidly growing market, led by the likes of the Hyundai Creta. We motored all around Goa in different variants of the Seltos, to bring out this review of the first product from the Kia’s stable in India.
Joshua David Luther

SELTOS – A SINGULARITY

At the moment, the Kia Seltos exudes a sense of uniqueness about it in India. Being the first in our country from a manufacturer that has a couple of Red Dot design awards under its belt, Kia had already made waves with the SP2 concept at the 2018 Auto Expo. When seen in the flesh for the very first time, the Seltos has a charming aura that is capable of keeping its eyes fixated. This compact SUV looks quite proportionate and futuristic. With a distinct tiger nose front grille and its crown jewel LED headlamps, the front gets a dapper appearance, one that we feel will ensure immense popularity for the brand in India. Heartbeat LED DRLs, sweeping light bar and ice cube LED fog lamps round up the unique look this SUV sports in the front, with the bumper housing multiple air dams and sporting a neatly chiselled appearance.

The profile of the Kia Seltos is highlighted with strong character lines and seamless curves. The roof line tapers slowly towards the rear and gives the Seltos a definite SUV-like look. This is further highlighted by roof rails and squared-off wheel arches. The rear has a broad and bulky look with elegantly crafted heartbeat tail lamps. With an adequate amount of cuts and creases, the design of Kia Seltos exudes a profound sense of craftsmanship.

Kia is offering the Seltos in two trims – the Tech Line and the GT Line. While the former appears to be positioned for urban family-oriented buyers, the latter is targeted at customers looking for something sporty and youthful. The GT Line gets stylish and sporty elements like dedicated badging, skid plates with red accents, red brake callipers and side cladding. Kia is also offering a contrasting look on the roof and a sporty-looking spoiler as alternate design options.

Step into the cabin of the Seltos and you will be greeted by sophisticated and suave looks. With neatly defined design lines and a smooth blend of quality materials, imbibing the interiors is a rich and refreshing experience. The dashboard offers a nice balance for driver and passenger ergonomic functionality. The construct of the infotainment unit and the instrument cluster in a single housing, give the Seltos a hi-tech and futuristic touch. The Korean auto major has engineered commendable build quality for this compact SUV and the fit and finish are second to none. Kia is also offering different seat upholstery designs to distinguish between the two product lines.

SIZING IT UP

While Kia has built the Seltos ground-up with a keen focus on India, the Korean OEM does fall under the Hyundai Motor umbrella, which effectively means that there exist definite synergies between both companies. For starters, the platform is an updated version of what the present generation Hyundai Creta has been built on. This also translates into slightly larger dimensions – for instance, the Seltos is longer than the Creta by 45 mm and is also wider by 20 mm and has a wheelbase that is longer by 15 mm. Even the boot is larger than that of the Hyundai Creta by around 31 mm.

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