Kia’s latest arrival, the much anticipated Seltos, is set to shake up the vibrant small SUV segment with a level of sophistication and technology setting it apart from the pack.
The arrival of the new Kia Seltos brings sophistication, cutting-edge technology, eye-catching design, safety and class-leading space to a segment buyers have clearly taken to their hearts.
Unveiled just over three months ago the Seltos is already drawing record inquires in the Korean and Indian markets where it is currently available.
Australia will be the third major market where Seltos is available when it hits showrooms from October 25.
“There has been a space in our product line-up for this car for longer than we would have ideally liked,” Kia Motors Australia Chief Operating Officer Damien Meredith said.
“However, despite being a little late to the party we are confident that the Seltos is the right car for the market and has the potential to be the belle of the ball.”
Mr Meredith, in acknowledging the challenges facing any new model in one of Australia’s most competitive segments, said the Seltos brings characteristics buyers in the segment may not have thought achievable.
“The Seltos is not only stylish but brings practical, useable size along with great technology, safety and value in a segment-leading package which also benefits from Kia’s industry-best 7-Year Warranty, 7-Year Capped Price Service and 7-Year Roadside assistance program.”
Mr. Han-Woo Park, President and CEO, Kia Motors Corporation, commented: “The Seltos is an important car for Kia as it will play a central role in our international growth.
“Global sales of compact (small) SUVs are forecast to expand from 6.5 million vehicles in 2018 to more than 8.2 million by the end of 2022, and the Seltos brings Kia strengths in design, quality and technology to this popular segment.
“In the Seltos, we have created a car that can fulfil the diverse needs of customers in markets all around the world.
“Aimed at youthful, tech-savvy buyers, with a striking design inside and out, the car is also packed full of our most cutting-edge technology and safety equipment.”
The Seltos is characterized by design details that lend it an air of understated sportiness.
Smaller than its Sportage mid-sized sibling, the Seltos packs a lot into its compact footprint, with more space for passengers and luggage than any rival B-segment SUV.
The new model also offers a choice of highly-efficient Multi Point Injection and Turbo petrol engines.
The Seltos provides outstanding value for money – thanks to a range of technology features that maximize connectivity and safety, class-leading interior space that seats five people in comfort, and a contemporary design which differentiates it from other B-segment SUVs.
For Australia, Seltos will be available in four specification levels S, Sport, Sport+ and GT Line.
S, Sport and Sport+ front-wheel drive will be powered by a four-cylinder 2.0-litre MPI Atkinson cycle engine producing 110kW and 180Nm coupled to the latest generation CVT.
Sport+ and GT Line all-wheel drive will feature the proven 1.6T-GDI coupled to a 7-speed Dual Clutch Transmission producing 130kW and 265Nm.
Starting from $25,990 drive away for the S through to $41,990 (D/A) for the GT Line. A $1000 safety pack will be available for the S and Sport models.
Seltos will be available in Starbright Yellow (standard colour) and premium colours ($520) Neptune Blue, Gravity Grey, Mars Orange, Snow White Pearl, Steel Grey and Cherry Black.
A special two-tone treatment is available on GT Line at no extra cost for Clear White with Cherry Black Roof and Starbright Yellow with Cherry Black Roof.
Specification levels are rich across the grades with the S boasting standard AEB (car and pedestrian), an 8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Lane Keeping Assist, Cruise Control, Driver Attention Alert, halogen Daytime Running Lights, reversing camera with dynamic guidelines, rear parking sensors, six airbags, six speakers and auto headlights.
The optional safety pack brings full AEB (car, pedestrian, cyclist), Advanced Smart Cruise Control, Driver Attention Alert+, electronic parking brake, electric folding mirrors, auto up and down driver’s window and 15-inch rear disc brakes.
Step up to Sport and the extra equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, 10.25-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, satellite navigation with SUNA traffic and 10-year MapCare updates, single zone climate control, electric folding mirrors, auto up and down driver’s window, auto window defogger, front halogen fog light, solar windows and full size spare.
The option Safety Pack adds full AEB, Advanced Smart Cruise Control, Driver Attention Alert+, electronic parking brake and 15-inch rear disc brakes.
For Sport+ there is the addition of cloth and artificial leather seats, full AEB, Driver Attention Alert+, Advanced Smart Cruise Control, Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist, smart key with push button start, smart remote start, electronic parking brake, heated side mirrors, LED interior lights, electrochromic rearview mirror, front parking sensors, luggage screen and 15-inch rear disc brakes.
At the top of the tree is the GT Line which is the full package. Sunroof (not available with two-tone paint), 18-inch alloy wheels, interior sound mood lighting, 8-speaker BOSE premium sound system, fast wireless phone charger, 7-inch driver instrument cluster, Head-Up Display, premium artificial leather seats, powered driver and front passenger seat, heated and ventilated front seats, LED headlights, LED daylight running lights, LED front fog light, rain sensing wipers, Lane Following Assist, Safe Exit Alert and aeroblade wipers.
Technologies and features
Market and world-first features in its segment
The Seltos is a technologically advanced and refined compact SUV equipped with a range of market and world-first features.
These aren’t just designed to make driving safer and less stressful, but also more enjoyable.
At the heart of the dashboard, and providing total ease of operation, is the car’s infotainment system.
Depending on vehicle specification, the Seltos is available with Kia’s new 10.25-inch touchscreen AVN (audio-visual navigation), a new widescreen infotainment system with advanced split-screen functionality.
This allows users to control or monitor numerous vehicle features at the same time and customize the screen to display up to three separate applications simultaneously.
The driver, therefore, can choose to have a single display (such as navigation) or combine different elements on-screen.
The system provides Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility as standard. The 10.25-inch AVN is also available with a powerful eight-speaker Bose Premium Audio system.
The BOSE system, normally found in larger luxury cars costing many times the price of the Seltos, fills the car with a rich and immersive sound, taking in-car entertainment in the segment to a new level.
The cabin is available with an optional Sound Mood Lighting, which emits soft ambient light via 3D-patterned panels in the doors and dashboard.
Light pulses in time to the beat of music playing through the audio system, with eight customizable colours and six themes to illuminate the cabin.
The driver can also benefit from two new features to maximize clarity of information.
The first of these innovations is the new 8.0-inch Head-Up Display system, which projects relevant driving information on to a small glass panel behind the steering wheel – such as turn-by-turn navigation directions and vehicle speed information.
A 7.0-inch digital instrument cluster is designed to deliver key driving information as clearly as possible. With a high-definition display, the digital cluster complements the conventional speedometer and tachometer dials found in the brand’s other passenger cars.
Its single, seamless display subtly changes the information and graphics presented depending on different drive modes.
A multi-function display between the dials communicates turn-by-turn navigation instructions, audio information, phone calls and contacts, and in-depth trip information, as well as vehicle diagnostics alerts, and pop-up notifications linked to the car’s various active safety and driver assist technologies.
Additional features that maximize the cabin’s utility and comfort include a wireless smartphone charger at the base of the dashboard and power-adjustable front seats on GT Line as well as an electronic parking brake on Sport+ and GT Line.
Performance and driving
A pair of highly efficient petrol engines
The sporty, stylish exterior is matched with strong on-road performance, engaging dynamics, and a comfortable ride for occupants.
The Australian cars, built in Gwangju, Korea, feature a choice of two aluminium-construction engines.
The 1.6-litre T-GDi (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine produces 130kW and 265Nm torque, enabling 0-to-100 kph acceleration in just 8.0 seconds, and 80-to-120 kph in just 5.3 seconds.
The 1.6-litre T-GDi engine is paired with a seven-speed double-clutch transmission (DCT) driving through an AWD system.
An Atkinson Cycle 2.0-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine, producing 110kW and 180Nm torque, is available with front-wheel drive, with power provided to the wheels through a newly-developed continuously-variable transmission (CVT).
To further elevate the driving experience, the Seltos is equipped with a Drive Mode Select system that lets drivers adapt the car to their preferred style or the road conditions.
Drivers can choose from ‘Normal’, ‘Eco’ and ‘Sport’ mode. The Eco mode is tuned to maximize vehicle range by using fuel-saving measures, while Sport mode increases turn-in responses from the steering and electric motor to maximize the dynamic driving feel of the car. Normal mode provides a careful balance between the two.
The Seltos is fitted as standard with MacPherson strut front suspension and a torsion beam rear axle; while all-wheel drive models are equipped with fully-independent multi-link rear suspension.
In either specification, the suspension and steering are tuned to provide a comfortable and confidence-inspiring high-speed drive.
The motor-driven electric power-steering system is tuned to deliver rapid and linear response.
All models for Australia will have the bespoke local tune which has become one of the key characteristics of all Kia cars sold in Australia.
The ride and handling package for Australia was developed by the Kia Australia team over thousands of kilometres both at Korean test facilities and on Australian roads.
As a further feature to maximize driving confidence, the Seltos is equipped with disc brakes on all four corners.
A sporty and sophisticated compact SUV
The Seltos stands apart from its rivals thanks to a sophisticated, sporty design and the space and capabilities of a larger SUV.
With its bold and dynamic profile, the Seltos brings with it a series of distinctive exterior design details, such as its long hood, a strong, character line on the front bumper, and sharp lines pressed into the bodywork.
It also sports a wide ‘tiger nose grille’, making the car instantly recognizable as a Kia, but with a new diamond-pattern surface.
Its robust shoulder line and glasshouse shape, which tapers towards the rear of the car, lends the car an air of understated sportiness.
The rear bumper with a metallic muffler effect accentuates the dynamic appearance.
The Seltos is equipped (dependant on model) with intricate and sharply designed full LED headlights and taillights, affording a commanding and confident presence on the road.
Delicate strips of white light span the front, while the car’s full LED headlamps provide a light signature which sits above distinctive 3D multi-layer indicators.
For driving in foggy conditions, the GT-Line is also equipped with LED front fog lights with halogen rear for light.
Rear LED lamps on the GT Line echo the light signatures found at the front, lending the car a highly technical appearance, day and night.
At 4370mm in length, the Seltos has front and rear overhangs of just 865mm and 875mm respectively, resulting in a wheelbase of 2630mm – longer than many of its rivals.
With the wheels pushed into the corners of the body, the 1615mm overall height means the Seltos has a sportier bearing than many other compact SUVs.
While the Seltos is only subtly larger on the outside than other B-segment SUVs, its long wheelbase and fine proportions result in significantly more space in the cabin and trunk than any other rival.
The Seltos boasts a drag coefficient of just 0.33, carving through the air more efficiently than many others in the compact SUV segment.
The aerodynamics are aided by a subtle tailgate spoiler, as well as measures to enhance under-body airflow, such as an optimized lower bumper lip, wheel deflectors and smooth under-floor panels.
The Kia Seltos sits on a choice of 16-inch steel wheels (S) and 17-inch premium crystal-cut alloy wheels (Sport, Sport+).
The GT Line benefits from 18-inch wheels which complement the dimensions of the car, giving it a powerful stance.
The wheels are shod with high-grip 205/60 R16, 215/55 R17 or 235/45 R18 tires.
Seltos has a 177mm ground clearance when equipped with 16-inch wheels, 183mm for models fitted with larger 17-inch wheels, and 186mm when equipped with 18-inch wheels on the GT Line.
A colourful character, the Seltos is available in Cherry Black, Snow White Pearl, Steel Grey, Gravity Grey, Mars Orange, Neptune Blue and Starbright Yellow.
There will also be a pair of two-tone treatments Clear White with Cherry Black roof and Starbright Yellow with Cherry Black roof as a no-cost option for GT Line.
A forward-looking interior characterized by high-quality materials
The eye-catching interior of the Seltos is designed with high-quality materials and futuristic in-car technology.
Developed to meet the needs of youthful, tech-savvy buyers, the refined and advanced cabin is characterized by broad, sweeping shapes and highly technical details.
The focal point is a sweeping instrument panel with an asymmetric layout, creating a cockpit-style environment for the driver, and an open, welcoming space for passengers.
At the centre of the dashboard is a ‘floating’ infotainment system, one of several features that maximize convenience, connectivity and ease of use.
Standing proud of the instrument panel, the infotainment system is positioned in such a way as to maximize ease of use and visibility for drivers.
Beneath, physical dials control the car’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning, providing a highly-ergonomic and tactile way to control the cabin environment.
A highly contemporary space in which to spend time, the new Seltos is also available with Kia’s novel Sound Mood Lighting system.
The ergonomics of the cabin allow the driver to sit comfortably with a commanding view, helping to maintain focus on the road ahead and naturally reduce fatigue.
Within the lounge-like and spacious interior, the Seltos also houses an 8.0-inch Head-Up Display system on GT Line which projects relevant driving information on to a small glass panel behind the steering wheel.
The cabin is trimmed in a choice of urban grays and blacks, with modern, geometric patterns stitched into the upholstery.
Practicality and packaging
Class-leading cabin and trunk space with a focus on passenger comfort
The Seltos features the largest cabin and trunk of any B-segment SUV currently on sale, aided by the car’s subtly larger exterior dimensions and long wheelbase.
This also contributes to the passenger cabin offering more legroom than rivals; the high, straight roofline, greater headroom.
The front of the cabin provides up to 1051mm legroom, 1409mm shoulder space, and 1017mm headroom.
Cupholders and a bottleholder in the doors and centre console, as well as a storage tray at the base of the dashboard, provide plenty of spaces in which to store items when driving.
The centre console also provides another storage option, with an armrest cushion that can be moved 60mm forwards or backwards in Sport+ and GT Line, ensuring front seat occupants of any height always have somewhere to rest their elbows.
The rear of the Seltos’s cabin is the most accommodating in the class, with up to 965mm legroom, 975mm headroom, and 1395mm shoulder space for up to three passengers.
Furthermore, in GT Line the centre console features vents in the rear for heating, ventilation and air conditioning, as well as a USB charger for rear occupants’ mobile devices and a small tray to hold them.
The rear seat back can also recline from 26 to 32 degrees, a larger span than is found in other cars in the class, ensuring rear passengers can find their most comfortable seating position.
With a temporary spare, the trunk provides 498 litres VDA of space (752 liters SAE), offering greater luggage capacity than competing models.
Should owners need to transport larger items, the 60:40-split rear seats fold down completely flat.
Full range of advanced active safety systems available
Kia’s passive and active safety systems ensure that Seltos occupants remain well protected on every journey.
With the safety of occupants a number-one priority for the brand in all of its cars, Kia is targeting the most rigorous safety standards.
The Seltos’ body is made up of a blend of steel and aluminium, maximizing torsional rigidity while keeping body weight low.
With a high proportion of Advanced High-Strength Steel components, the rigid bodyshell reduces road vibrations and enhances occupant safety in the event of a collision.
AEB is standard across the model range with Sport+ and GT Line featuring Fusion AEB with recognition of cars, pedestrians and cyclists.
The S and Sport grades come standard with base AEB for car and pedestrian recognition but upgrades to the high-end version with the optional safety pack.
The Seltos is fitted with six airbags, as well as a suite of electronic vehicle safety systems.
These include Kia’s Vehicle Stability Management system as standard, incorporating traction control and electronic stability control.
The car is fitted with an Anti-lock Braking System, a Traction Control System, a Brake-force Assist System and Hill-start Assist Control, as well as front and rear parking sensors on Sport+ and GT Line, for assistance when parking.
Matching its high-tech comfort and convenience features, the Seltos is offered with a range of Kia’s latest advanced driving assistance systems.
These include Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist, AEB with Forward Collision Warning with car and pedestrian detection and Lane Keeping Assist.
Also offered is a new Driver Attention Alert+ system, which advises drivers to take a break if the system detects signs of fatigue and alerts the driver if the vehicle in front moves away from a stop situation, such as a set of lights.
A new Safe Exit Assist function warns occupants of traffic (including bicycles and motorcycles) before they open their door into the road.
Finally, Lane Following Assist is also available – Kia’s ‘Level Two’ autonomous driving technology which controls acceleration, braking and steering.
Lane Following Assist can track vehicles and road markings ahead to keep the car in-lane and a safe distance from any cars in front.
A Rear-View Monitor is also standard, aiding drivers when completing low-speed manoeuvers.
Pricing (drive away):
S FWD $25,990
Sport FWD $29,490
Sport+ FWD $32,990
Sport+ AWD $36,490
GT Line AWD $41,990
Safety Pack (available on S and Sport) $1000
Premium Paint $520
The Seltos will be on sale from October 25.