Kia India to launch a Maruti Baleno-rivalling cross-hatch - Report

18/01/2019 - 18:30 | ,  ,   | Yatharth Chauhan

Kia India will enter the Indian car market with the production-spec Kia SP Concept (codename SP2i) around the middle of this year. The company is said to launch total six models in three years from now. While the second made-for-India model will be a compact SUV that will debut at the Auto Expo 2020, Autocar India reports that the third vehicle will be a cross-hatchback that will rival the likes of Maruti Baleno and Hyundai i20.

Kia SP Concept front fascia at Auto Expo 2018
Kia India will launch 6 new models in the first three years of its business. These models will comprise a mix of locally manufactured models and locally-assembled imports.

In addition to the confirmed Carnival minivan, Kia's imported range in India may include the Ceed and Sportage. The B-segment cross-hatch will become the smallest product in the company's lineup and is said to be bound to launch in 2021.

The new model is likely to share its underpinnings with the next generation Rio hatchback. The current-gen Rio is sold in hatchback and sedan body styles in many international markets. In fact, markets like that of Russia and China even get a cross-hatch derivative that is sold as the K2 Cross. It measures 4,104 mm in length and is 40 mm longer than the Rio. The Indian-spec crossover-ish hatchback, however, should be less than 4,000 mm in length to qualify as a small car for lower GST rates.

The made-for-India Kia model could share its turbocharged 1.0-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel engines with its compact SUV brethren. The Kia SP2i will be available with 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol, 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol and 1.5-litre turbocharged diesel engines.

Kia SP Concept front three quarters left side at Auto Expo 2018
The production-spec Kia SP Concept will be reportedly available in a sporty version that will feature a more aggressive styling package and a punchier petrol motor.

Also See: Kia's Hyundai Creta rival spied in S. Korea, launching ahead of schedule

The Kia SP2i is expected to cost INR 10-16 lakh (ex-showroom), which means that it will lock horns with the likes of Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier, MG Hector and Nissan Kicks.


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