The Kia Seltos is available with one of the widest powertrain options in the compact SUV segment. With as many as three engines and five gearbox options to choose from, customers are spoilt with options when buying the Seltos. All three engines offered on the Kia Seltos are quite potent by themselves, but diesel still remains a favorite in this segment. The 1.5L, four-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine on the Seltos produces 115hp and 250Nm of torque. It is offered with either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox.
If you are intending to buy a diesel variant of the Seltos, but can't decide between the manual or automatic gearbox, here's a video that might help ease your decision making process if performance is an important criteria for you. Here's a classic drag race between two Kia Seltos', one in a diesel-automatic configuration and the other in a diesel-manual configuration. The engine produces the same power and torque output with both the gearboxes. For the winner of this drag race, it will be solely down to its gearbox.
The drag race was conducted in two rounds, and in both the rounds, it was the Seltos diesel-manual variant that came out ahead. In the first round, the Seltos diesel-AT was kept in its automatic mode. By the end of the drag strip, the diesel-manual version of the Seltos was way ahead of its automatic counterpart and a clear winner of the first round. For the second round, the AT gearbox was put into manual mode, which limited the revs at standstill to just 2,000 rpm, further hindering the launch. In the second round, the manual version of the Seltos eked out an even larger gap, leaving the automatic variant far far behind.
The manual gearbox simply gives you better control with respect to when you want to shift and at what rpm you want to shift, while also making it much quicker than the automatic variant. In fact, the competition wasn't even close. So if performance is your priority, you know which gearbox to go for with the 1.5L diesel engine on the Seltos. In other news, Kia recently updated the Seltos for the 2021 model year with new trims, more features standard across the range and even a new gearbox option.
Currently, prices for the 2021 Kia Seltos start from INR 9.95 lakh and go up to INR 17.65 lakh (ex-showroom). A highlight of the updated C-SUV is the introduction of the iMT technology that has been available on the Sonet. The iMT gearbox on the Seltos is being offered with the 115hp 1.5L, NA petrol engine. The 140hp 1.4L turbo-petrol engine, which was so far offered only with a 7-speed DCT gearbox, is now also being offered with the 6-speed manual gearbox in a new GTX(O) trim. All automatic variants of the Seltos now additional come equipped with steering-mounted paddle shifters for a sportier driving experience.