JOHANNESBURG – Much like the Renault Sandero Stepway and the recently discontinued Toyota Etios Cross, the new Kia Picanto X-Line models are an attempt to blur the lines between the compact hatchback and crossover SUV, blending the affordability and frugality of the former with the style of the latter.
Launching in South Africa this week, the X-Line is perched at the top of the local Picanto line-up, with the five-speed manual version selling for R237 995 and the four-speed auto for R251 995. For the record, the regular Picanto hatchback models are priced between R183 995 and R228 995.
Incidentally, this isn’t the only crossover that Kia plans to launch in 2021, with the larger Sonet compact SUV set to slot between the X-Line and Seltos.
What sets the X-Line apart?
As you’d expect from this type of ‘pumped up’ hatch, the X-Line can be told apart by a more rugged looking front bumper design, featuring a silver skidplate, as well as black wheel arch mouldings. Also part of the deal is a set of 15-inch dual-tone alloy wheels.
The newcomer is available in some funky colours, including Honey Bee yellow, Alice Blue and Pop of Orange.
On the inside, the model is set apart by partial leather upholstery, aluminium pedal caps and a high gloss central fascia. Spec-wise, the X-Line comes standard with an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, manual air conditioning, sunroof, multi-function steering wheel, electric windows and rear park distance control.
The only available engine option is the familiar 1.2-litre normally aspirated unit, which is good for 61kW and 122Nm. It’s backed up by a five-year, unlimited kilometre warranty and two-year/30 000km service plan.
Our colleague Willem van der Putte is currently attending the South African media launch – watch this space for his driving impressions soon.
KIA PICANTO PRICES
1.0 Start – manual – R183 995
1.0 Street – manual – R195 995
1.0 Start – auto – R197 995
1.0 Runner – manual – R203 995
1.2 Street – manual – R204 995
1.0 Style – manual – R205 995
1.0 Street – auto – R209 995
1.2 Style – manual – R214 995
1.2 Street – auto – R218 995
1.0 Style – auto – R219 995
1.2 Style – auto – R228 995
1.2 X-Line – manual – R237 995
1.2 X-Line – auto – R251 995