South Korean carmaker, Kia is all set to start its operations in India and has invested a whopping $1.1 billion on setting up its manufacturing facility in Andhra Pradesh. The company is bracing up to launch its Kia Rio sedan in our market sometime by 2019.
Kia showcased its Rio sedan alongside Kia hatchback model at the Geneva Motor Show 2017, while it was showcased in India at the 2018 Auto Expo in February. The Kia Rio sedan is based on its hatchback cousin Hyundai Elite i20’s platform.
Kia has decided to launch one of its first products, the Rio sedan in India in one of the most popular and competitive segments – the Indian C segment of sedans. This means that post its Indian launch the Kia Rio sedan will go up against the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz, Honda City and its own cousin Hyundai Verna. Given the popularity of the C-segment sedans in India, we can hope that Kia will get good success with its Rio sedan.
Although Kia is Hyundai’s sister concern, both offer very different looking products and have dissimilar customer appeal globally. The Rio sedan has been designed at the Kia studios in based in Korea, US and Europe. In India, the Rio sedan is likely to borrow the same engine range that drives the Hyundai Verna. This means the 1.6L engine, the 1.4L U2 CDRi or a 1.6L engine coupled with a manual and an automatic transmission gearbox choice.
The Malaysia-spec Kia Rio sedan is 4,370 mm long, 1720 mm wide and 1,455 mm tall with a wheelbase measuring 2,570 mm. However, in India, the sedan could have some dimensions change. It will come with 165 mm of ground clearance and 15 inch multi-spoke alloy wheels to tackle the infamous Indian roads better.
If Kia endows the Rio sedan’s cabin with great features in India, then it will definitely have greater chances of getting good success beating the tough market competition. Internationally, the Rio sedan gets a spacious and nicely styled interior with a 7 inch floating-type touchscreen display integrated infotainment system with voice recognition and connectivity options including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. The car also receives a 6 speaker stereo system along with satellite radio, with Bluetooth handsfree functionality and a rear view camera among others. Similar to its hatchback twin, the Kia Rio sedan also comes laden with an array of driving aid technology, creature comfort features and an extensive list of safety technology.
With such nice and premium features, the Rio sedan will be winning the hearts of the modern Indian sedan buyers who wish to own quality, feature-rich cars. Nevertheless, it is yet not known what all features the India-spec Rio sedan will come braced with. In the Indian car market, the Kia Rio sedan is expected to come with a price range of around Rs. 9 to 13 lakhs.
We think that the upcoming Kia Rio sedan will be a good success in India with its premium quality and long list of features.
Will you invest in a premium sedan from the house of Kia, given it’s a new brand name in our market?