Kia is aiming for a younger and more style-conscious customer with the new Picanto supermini, due to make an appearance at the Geneva motor show in March.
The second-generation city car, has a much more stylish and confident look than its forebear.
Kia’s ‘tiger eye’ grille gives the car recognisable visual links with several larger models in the Kia line-up, while its upright stance, stub nose and backwards-swept headlights strike a particularly strong fraternal resemblance with the Venga mini-MPV.
Elsewhere on the car, as Kia design boss Peter Schreyer explains, “significant sculpting and a prominent rising character line results in a layering of light and shadow that breaks up the height of the car, giving it a more surefooted stance”.
Although Kia has yet to release photographs of the car’s interior, Autocar understands that it features a two-spoke steering wheel, as well as satin-finish material trims for a hi-tech, more expensive ambience. Audio and air conditioning controls will be concentrated on a centralised console.
The new Picanto is longer than the outgoing car, with a longer wheelbase to provide more cabin space for occupants. Like the outgoing car, it will be offered as a five-door globally, but a sportier three-door will be available in Europe.
The new Picanto will be powered by a choice of 1.0-litre three-cylinder and 1.25-litre four-cylinder petrol engines to begin with. A 1.1-litre, four-cylinder CRDi diesel Picanto will also join the range after launch, offering 74bhp and 112lb ft of torque. Biofuel and LPG versions will be offered in other global markets.