The Kia Sonet Spied Testing. Launch Could Be Delayed Until Diwali

The test mule was spotted near Kia’s facility in Andhra Pradesh

The Kia Sonet sub-4m SUV has been spotted testing near the company’s manufacturing facility in Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh. Kia unveiled a concept version of the Hyundai Venue-based SUV in India at Auto Expo 2020. Originally expected to be launched in August, the Sonet could be delayed until October due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. It will rival the Tata Nexon and Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza un the sub-4 metre SUV segment and is expected to be priced upwards of Rs 7 lakh (ex-showroom).

The latest spy shots reveal a new alloy wheel design which is different from the red-and-silver design of the model showcased at the Auto Expo.

Another spied mule is likely a lower variant since it is not equipped with the roof rails or contrast black roof.

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Inside, the Sonet is expected to have a similar aesthetic as the larger Seltos mid-size SUV. Spy shots have shown us that it will have a long panoramic panel housing the touchscreen infotainment system and driver’s instrumentation.

It is expected to be powered by BS6 1.5-litre petrol and diesel engines paired with 6-speed manual and torque converter automatic transmission options. A 1.0-litre 120PS T-GDI turbo petrol engine from the Venue could be offered as well, likely paired with a manual gearbox or 7-speed dual-clutch transmission.

The current coronavirus pandemic has plagued over 12 lakh people worldwide. It has caused the Indian government to impose a 21-day lockdown during the crucial period when companies were attempting to clear BS4 inventories. Although the current speculation is for a Diwali launch, it could be pushed back even further if the rate of COVID-19 infection fails to drop by mid-2020.

Late or not, we can’t wait to have a go in the Sonet. It will rival other sub-4 metre SUVs such as the Mahindra XUV300, Ford EcoSport, Mahindra TUV300, and the Renault Duster, once launched.


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