Currently reading: Bold new Kia Picanto priced from £15,595
City car gets EV9-style grille and over-the-air updates but its price leaves just four sub-£15k cars on sale

Pricing and specifications have been revealed for the new Kia Picanto, which has gained a radical redesign inside and out in a bid to sustain its appeal and strong sales figures. 

Starting from £15,595, Kia's entry-level hatchback follows its closely related Hyundai i10 sibling - itself recently a recipient of similar upgrades – in pushing the price above the £15,000 mark. 

This leaves just four cars on sale in the UK for less than £15,000: the Citroën C3Dacia SanderoFiat Panda and MG 3

Four specifications are available. Entry-level 2 models get 14in alloy wheels and cloth upholstery. GT-Line cars command a £1150 premium and gain additional equipment such as 16in alloys, LED lights and privacy glass. 

The next trim, 3, is available from £17,545 and brings heated front seats, automatic air conditioning and wireless phone charging. An additional £900 buys the top-rung GT-Line S model, which gets gloss black detailing, a sunroof and ambient lighting. 

Four new paint colours have been added across the range.

Redesigned with a particular focus on young professionals and short, urban commutes, the new Picanto promises to be easier to drive than before, with more standard equipment, over-the-air update functionality and new technology that, Kia says, makes it "one of the safest cars in its class".

Its bold exterior redesign is inspired by Kia's new 'Opposites united' design philosophy, which has driven the design language of models such as the EV9 and EV6.


Read our review

Car review

The new Kia Picanto gets lashings of style and a good 1.2-litre petrol engine to make it a compelling choice in the city car market, but the Volkswagen Up makes for stiff competition

Back to top

Kia's signature 'tiger nose' front grille features on the city car for the first time, along with optional LED headlights and a rear light bar to give it a wider stance visually - backed by a 12mm-wider track width at both ends.

All trim levels are available with either a 1.0-litre three-cylinder or 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol engine. Both are naturally aspirated and have been updated to improve exhaust-gas recirculation and reduce emissions. 

Both engines are available with a five-speed automatic gearbox or a five-speed automated manual – a conventional manual transmission equipped with automatic actuation of the clutch and gears.

Inside, the Picanto's infotainment system has been thoroughly overhauled, with an 8.0in 'floating' touchscreen as standard, with a 4.2in LCD driver's display.

The larger system brings Bluetooth compatibility that can pair two devices at the same time, as well as Kia Connect, which provides services such as live traffic updates, weather forecast and details of potential on- and off-street parking spots. 

The system also allows owners to use an app to pre-load their sat-nav with route directions before getting into the car and can receive over-the-air updates for the infotainment and sat-nav system. 

Back to top

The new interior design was "inspired by nature" and offers a choice of two colour packs: Adventurous Green and Rich Brown.

Both specifications are available with faux leather upholstery as part of Kia's drive to become more sustainable. Starting with the EV9, Kia will begin to phase out leather in all of its models.

Cargo space remains the same as in the outgoing model, at 255 litres with the seats in place, making the boot larger than that of the Volkswagen Up and Mini hatch. With the seats folded, it stretches to 1010 litres, also larger than in the equivalent Volkswagen or Mini.

As for safety, the Picanto gets the same torque vectoring by braking system as before, which is said to make it easier to control in both normal and high-demand situations.

Jonathan Bryce

Jonathan Bryce
Title: Editorial Assistant

Jonathan is an editorial assistant working with Autocar. He has held this position since March 2024, having previously studied at the University of Glasgow before moving to London to become an editorial apprentice and pursue a career in motoring journalism. 

His role at work involves writing news stories, travelling to launch events and interviewing some of the industry's most influential executives, writing used car reviews and used car advice articles, updating and uploading articles for the Autocar website and making sure they are optimised for search engines, and regularly appearing on Autocar's social media channels including Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.

Join the debate

Add a comment…
jason_recliner 2 May 2024

The front end that was challenging and controversial when pics were released looks pretty damn good when you see one driving around. Another Kia styling success, no doubt. Incredible momentum from Korea right now.

skikid 1 May 2024

These are great little cars that punch above their weight ,my daughter got a new Gt line auto in November and thoroughly loves it ,comfy and takes all her luggage and friends ,drives well and economical not sure what you are saying about manual auto  as  it is a proper auto and smooth at that.

Shrub 1 May 2024
I know of three people who were considering the i10 sister car, all wanted an automatic, and all three didn't buy because of the awful automated manual box offered instead of the DCT that features in the i20. It was understandable when these were £12k cars but the price increases now surely justify the inclusion of a decent auto box, not to mention increased sales for Kia/Hyundai.