CABIN FEVER
evo India|July 2020
The Kia Carnival is a fair bit more expensive than the Toyota Innova Crysta, and we’re trying to figure out if it’s worth all that extra cash!
AATISH MISHRA

FEBRUARY 2020. I WAS STANDING IN Hall 7 at the Auto Expo packed to the rafters with journalists with boilerplate tweets and half-finished web stories, waiting for the price of the Kia Carnival to be announced. The Seltos had already been established as a runaway success, but there was apprehension surrounding the Carnival. It was attempting something that had never been achieved in the last decade and a half of the Indian automotive landscape, one-upping the Toyota Innova. Many have undercut Toyota’s star MPV — the Ertiga, Mobilio, Marrazzo, Lodgy — all trying to offer the same number of seats at a better price. But no one had tried to go the other way, with more seats, more luxury and more equipment. I had already driven the Carnival and knew its potential. However, as it is with everything in India, it was all down to the price. The usual product presentation song-and-dance that I had already sat through once before at the first drive, was repeated here. Then came the prices. Just under ₹25 lakh for the base variant. Little under ₹34 lakh for the Limousine.

I remember muttering “interesting pricing” to the guy sitting on my left, and him nodding in agreement. I also remember congratulating the Kia execs (who seemed mighty pleased with themselves, and rightly so) after the launch. And interesting pricing it was, because the Carnival slotted itself just above the Innova. By a whisker. But also by a mile. For the sake of keeping it simple, let us look at the current prices (as opposed to telling you what has changed between February to now) — the most affordable Carnival is ₹1.3 lakh more than the most expensive Innova. And the most expensive Carnival, is a whole ₹10 lakh more than the most expensive Innova. That isn’t loose change — you can get an Eritga and double your people-carrying capacity. So this isn’t a story of two rivals squaring off to see which one comes out tops. Instead, we are answering the question: is this 7-seater ‘Limousine’-badged Carnival really worth ₹10 lakh more than the Crysta?

Pushing the boundaries

Why Kia would name a boring ol’ MPV the ‘Carnival’ had me stumped, until I tried to get in one. The Carnival feels like more of an event than anything on four wheels at this price, and I’m pretty certain the doors that slide back at the push of a button have something to do with it. Then you climb inside and press a button for the door to shut itself. There’s no unsightly huffing and heaving. Just the calculated grace of the machine doing what machines are supposed to do — work — leaving you to do what the backseat of the Carnival so desperately wants you to do. Chill!

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM EVO INDIAView All

Yes, it's another special edition Polo

Matt Edition of the Polo GT will arrive in time for the festive season

1 min read
evo India
April 2021

Mother of Pearl

Lamborghini has brought in the Urus Pearl Capsule to India, along with the MY2021 Urus

2 mins read
evo India
April 2021

Making tyre buying easy

CEAT Tyres has gone the extra mile to make tyre shopping easier with its new label ratings system

1 min read
evo India
April 2021

Wellness forever

Volvo India plans to accelerate its growth by launching four new cars by 2022

2 mins read
evo India
April 2021

Victory mountain

Named after a temple in Cambodia, the Bayon is set to strengthen Hyundai’s SUV lineup

1 min read
evo India
April 2021

The fourth SUVW

5-seater Tiguan to return in petrol-only avatar

1 min read
evo India
April 2021

Heritage drive

Headed by GVCVC, the Palace to Palace Vintage Drive had some of the rarest cars plying on Goa’s streets

2 mins read
evo India
April 2021

BIJOY KUMAR Y

Bijoy rants against the proliferation of electronics in our cars!

3 mins read
evo India
April 2021

“Stellantis is a huge opportunity for PSA and FCA”

Speaking to Citroen India’s Senior VPs Roland Bouchara (SVP sales and marketing) Eric Apode (SVP) and Saurabh Vatsa (Sr director, marketing) on the C5 Aircross, dealership ramp-up, the C-Cubed program and synergies with FCA

5 mins read
evo India
March 2021

McLAREN V2.0

McLaren’s first decade was a whirlwind of super and hypercars, highs and lows, and endless special editions. Now the Artura’s here to start the next chapter

10 mins read
evo India
March 2021
RELATED STORIES

How Toyota Dodged The Chip Shortage

As rivals shutter plants, the automaker’s close monitoring of its supply chain gives it an edge

5 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
April 12, 2021

2021 SUV OF THE YEAR

Enter the battleground

10+ mins read
Four Wheeler
May 2021

Auto chip shortage may have domino effect in smartphone industry

Auto industry leaders are experiencing disruptions, with estimated production shortfalls in single-digit percentage range in the first quarter of 2021.

1 min read
Industry Leaders
March 2021

CHASING SQUIRRELS

“ There is a hole here,” I said, gazing through the lime green tubing as the front passenger tire inched closer to the hole. “Uh-huh,” he replied.

6 mins read
4LOW Offroad Magazine
February/March 2021

Go Ahead, Do Nothing

We push ourselves to work harder, but taking a break can often fuel a burst in productivity and creativity

4 mins read
Reader's Digest US
March 2021

The Top 5: If you're building a 4x4, then these should be the first items on your list

I was listening to my buddies Verne Simons and Trent McGee on a podcast the other day, and one of the hosts asked them, “What’s the best off-road upgrade you’ve made to a 4x4?” I won’t divulge their answers because, in my opinionated opinion, only one of them answered correctly.

2 mins read
Four Wheeler
March 2021

First time ‘in charge'

You would expect some lessons were to be learned on extended trailer trip

10+ mins read
The Good Life
February 2021

AUTOART - 2018 TOYOTA CENTURY

1:18 | $230 | no. 78762

3 mins read
Die Cast X
Winter 2021

TRAVEL TOY

Snow, sand, and mud—Joel Lawrence’s 4Runner does it all with an M101 trailer in tow

3 mins read
Four Wheeler
February 2021

UNPRECEDENTED CONSTRUCTION

Mazda Toyota Manufacturing’s Huntsville, Ala. assembly plant overcomes multiple challenges to build safely and environmentally responsibly..

6 mins read
Industry Today
December 2020