2020 Kia Sonet SUV Production Version Spied
We recently spotted a Kia Sonet, the upcoming Hyundai Venue rival, heading from the Delhi airport towards Gurgaon. We suspect it could be headed to the iCAT office in Manesar for homologation.
This particular Sonet was wearing camouflage, but the tail lights gave its identity away. We had recently seen this unique 5-slat split tail lights on the concept version of the Sonet showcased at the Auto Expo 2020. It retains the LED light strip on top of the stop lights, which stretch edge-to-edge on the concept version. So, this edge-to-edge LED strip could be part of the standard equipment for the Sonet. The high-mount stop lamp is smaller than the one shown on the Sonet concept.
The car had its 2 rear parking sensors uncovered next to the number plate in the bumper. It also has the roof rails, which were present on the Sonet concept.
We couldn’t capture the front of the car but noticed that it had halogen lights. This fact, together with the 2 rear parking sensors, tells us that this could be one of the lower variants of the car. The Sonet concept displayed at the Auto Expo has LED headlamps.
In person, it appeared much bigger and imposing than most of its rivals.
Kia Sonet Expected Launch Date
The Sonet is slated to launch ahead of the festive season - around August 2020.
Kia Sonet Expected Engine Specs
It’s likely to share the powertrain with the Hyundai Venue. That means a 120PS/172Nm 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine with a 6-speed manual and 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission is almost certain to find a spot under the bonnet of Sonet. It’s unclear if the Sonet will also get the 1.2-litre normal petrol and 1.4-litre turbo diesel engine, which are currently available in the Hyundai Venue.
Kia Sonet Confirmed Features
Kia India recently revealed the Sonet concept at the Auto Expo 2020 but didn’t show the interior. At the fair, Kia confirmed that it’ll get a Bose sound system and over-the-air software update capabilities.
Spy shots of the car seen on other blogs also reveal that it may get front parking sensors. The steel wheels appear to be cut out in a way to accommodate stylish wheel covers which look like alloy wheels. The Renault Triber and Kwid also get similar wheel covers.
IMT (Clutch-Less Manual Transmission)
The game-changer for the Sonet is going to be its clutch-less manual transmission. Kia is calling it Intelligent Manual Transmission (IMT). It takes away the pain of managing the clutch in stop-and-go traffic, while the driver retains full control over gear changes. It addresses the issue of jerky gear changes, which plagues the AMT automatics (Automated Manual Transmission). Lack of a gear-changing mechanism is expected to further lower the cost of the IMT-equipped variants of the car compared to AMTs. We’re hoping that it should add about Rs. 20 - 30,000 to the cost of the car over a regular manual transmission.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mahesh is a fan of compact, quirky and underrated vehicles that punch above their weight. Multix, Nano, Strom R3 and Navi are his favorites.