The new Kia Seltos brings sophistication, class-leading space and cutting-edge technology and safety features to the global compact SUV segment.
Following its unveiling earlier this year, the new Seltos goes on sale in Australia in the fourth quarter of this year.
The Seltos is characterized by design details that lend it an air of understated sportiness. Smaller than its Sportage mid-sized sibling, the Seltos packs a lot into its compact footprint, with more space for passengers and luggage than any rival B-segment SUV. The new model also offers a choice of highly-efficient Smartstream petrol and diesel engines.
Han-Woo Park, President and CEO, Kia Motors Corporation, commented: “The Seltos is an important car for Kia as it will play a central role in our international growth. Global sales of compact SUVs are forecast to expand from 6.5 million vehicles in 2018 to more than 8.2 million by the end of 2022, and the Seltos brings Kia strengths in design, quality and technology to this popular segment.
“In the Seltos, we have created a car that can fulfil the diverse needs of customers in markets all around the world. Aimed at youthful, tech-savvy buyers, with a striking design inside and out, the car is also packed full of our most cutting-edge technology and safety equipment.”
The Seltos provides outstanding value for money – thanks to a range of technology features that maximize connectivity and safety, class-leading interior space that seats five people in comfort, and a contemporary design which differentiates it from other B-segment SUVs.
A sporty and sophisticated compact SUV
The Seltos stands apart from its rivals thanks to a sophisticated, sporty design and the space and capabilities of a larger SUV.
With its bold and dynamic profile, the Seltos brings with it a series of distinctive exterior design details, such as its long hood, a strong, character line on the front bumper, and sharp lines pressed into the bodywork.
It also sports a wide ‘tiger nose grille’, making the car instantly recognizable as a Kia, but with a new diamond-pattern surface. Its robust shoulder line and glasshouse shape, which tapers towards the rear of the car, lends the car an air of understated sportiness. The rear bumper with a metallic muffler effect accentuates the dynamic appearance.
The Seltos is equipped with intricate and sharply designed full LED headlights and taillights, affording a commanding and confident presence on the road.
Delicate strips of white light span the front, while the car’s full LED headlamps provide a light signature which sits above distinctive 3D multi-layer indicators.
For driving in foggy conditions, the car is also equipped with LED fog lights. Rear LED lamps echo the light signatures found at the front, lending the car a highly technical appearance, day and night.
At 4370mm in length, the Seltos has front and rear overhangs of just 850mm, resulting in a wheelbase of 2630mm – longer than many of its rivals, and on a par with many cars in the segment above.
With the wheels pushed into the corners of the body, the 1615mm overall height means the Seltos has a sportier bearing than many other compact SUVs. While the Seltos is only subtly larger on the outside than other B-segment SUVs, its long wheelbase and fine proportions result in significantly more space in the cabin and trunk than any other rival.
The Seltos boasts a drag coefficient of just 0.33 Cd, carving through the air more efficiently than many other cars in the compact SUV segment. The aerodynamics are aided by a subtle tailgate spoiler, as well as measures to enhance under-body airflow, such as an optimized lower bumper lip, wheel deflectors and smooth under-floor panels.
The Kia Seltos sits on a choice of 16-, 17- or 18-inch premium crystal-cut alloy wheels, which complement the dimensions of the car, giving it a powerful stance.
The wheels are shod with high-grip 205/60 R16, 215/55 R17 or 235/45 R18 tires. Depending on market, the car has a 170mm ground clearance when equipped with 16-inch wheels, 176mm for models fitted with larger 17-inch wheels, and 179mm when equipped with 18- inch wheels.
A colourful character, the Seltos is available in a choice of up to eight distinctive exterior paint finishes (depending on region): Cherry Black, Snow White Pearl, Steel Gray, Gravity Gray, Mars Orange, Neptune Blue, Dark Ocean Blue and Starbright Yellow. Certain markets will also offer two-tone body colour options enabling further customization, with the roof available in Cherry Black, Platinum Gold or Clear White to contrast with the carefully-selected palette of paint finishes for the rest of the body.
A forward-looking interior characterized by futuristic and high-quality materials
The eye-catching interior of the Seltos is designed with high-quality materials and futuristic in-car technology. Developed to meet the needs of youthful, tech-savvy buyers, the refined and advanced cabin is characterized by broad, sweeping shapes and highly technical details.
The focal point is a sweeping instrument panel with an asymmetric layout, creating a cockpit-style environment for the driver, and an open, welcoming space for passengers.
At the centre of the dashboard is a ‘floating’ infotainment system, one of several features that maximize convenience, connectivity and ease of use.
Standing proud of the instrument panel, the infotainment system is positioned in such a way as to maximize ease of use and visibility for drivers. Beneath, physical dials control the car’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning, providing a highly-ergonomic and tactile way to control the cabin environment.
A highly contemporary space in which to spend time, the new Seltos is also available with Kia’s novel Sound Mood Lighting system.
The ergonomics of the cabin allow the driver to sit comfortably with a commanding view, helping to maintain focus on the road ahead and naturally reduce fatigue. Within the lounge- like and spacious interior, the Seltos also houses an available 8.0-inch Head-Up Display system which projects unobtrusively relevant driving information on to a small glass panel behind the steering wheel.
The cabin is trimmed in a choice of urban grays and blacks, with modern, geometric patterns stitched into the upholstery.
Depending on market, buyers can also specify black or two-tone black-and-gray semi-aniline leather upholstery, as well as black or light gray synthetic leather. The dashboard can be finished in a high-quality gloss black or metal-effect panel, or an optional soft-touch dashboard with ambient lighting elements (when paired with the Sound Mood Lighting system).
Practicality and packaging
Class-leading cabin and trunk space with a focus on passenger comfort
The Seltos features the largest cabin and trunk of any B-segment SUV currently on sale, aided by the car’s subtly larger exterior dimensions and long wheelbase. This also contributes to the passenger cabin offering more legroom than rivals; the high, straight roofline, greater headroom.
The front of the cabin provides up to 1051mm legroom, 1409mm shoulder space, and 1017mm headroom.
Cupholders in the doors and centre console, as well as a storage tray at the base of the dashboard, provide plenty of spaces in which to store items when driving. The centre console also provides another storage option, with an armrest cushion that can be moved 60mm forwards or backwards, ensuring front seat occupants of any height always have somewhere to rest their elbows.
The rear of the Seltos’s cabin is the most accommodating in the class, with up to 965mm legroom, 975mm headroom, and 1395mm shoulder space for up to three passengers. Furthermore, the centre console features vents in the rear for heating, ventilation and air conditioning, as well as a USB charger for rear occupants’ mobile devices and a small tray to hold them.
The rear seat back can also recline from 26 to 32 degrees, a larger span than is found in other cars in the class, ensuring rear passengers can find their most comfortable seating position.
The trunk provides 498 litres VDA of space (752 litres SAE), offering greater luggage capacity than competing models. The two-step trunk floor can be moved up or down by 110mm, creating a secret storage compartment in its upper position, and a flat floor when the rear bench is folded. In its lower position the trunk floor maximizes space available for luggage and taller items. Should owners need to transport larger items, the 60:40-split rear seats fold down completely flat.
Performance and driving
A range of highly efficient Smartstream petrol and diesel engines
The sporty, stylish exterior is matched with strong on-road performance, engaging dynamics, and a comfortable ride for occupants. The new model is equipped with a range of newly developed powertrains for high efficiency and powerful performance, and can be chosen with either front- or all-wheel drive, depending on powertrain and market.
For models built in Gwangju, Korea, the Seltos is available with a choice of two aluminium-construction engines, depending on market. The 1.6-litre177 T-GDi (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine produces 130kW and 265Nm torque, enabling 0-to-100 kph acceleration in just 8.0 seconds, and 80-to-120 kph in just 5.3 seconds. The 1.6-litre T-GDi engine is paired with a seven-speed double-clutch transmission (DCT), and can be chosen with either front- or all-wheel drive.
A Smartstream 2.0-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine, producing 110kW and 180Nm torque, is also available with front- or all-wheel drive, with power provided to the wheels through a newly-developed continuously-variable transmission (CVT).
Smartstream is the brand’s new strategy for improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions from its internal combustion engines, achieved by optimizing every component of the engine.
To further elevate the driving experience, the Seltos is equipped with a Drive Mode Select system that lets drivers adapt the car to their preferred style or the road conditions.
Drivers can choose from ‘Normal’, ‘Eco’ and ‘Sport’ mode. The Eco mode is tuned to maximize vehicle range by using fuel-saving measures, while Sport mode increases turn-in responses from the steering and electric motor to maximize the dynamic driving feel of the car. Normal mode provides a careful balance between the two.
The Seltos is fitted as standard with MacPherson strut front suspension and a torsion beam rear axle; while all-wheel drive models are equipped with fully-independent multi-link rear suspension. In either specification, the suspension and steering are tuned to provide a comfortable and confidence-inspiring high-speed drive. The motor-driven electric power- steering system is tuned to deliver rapid and linear response.
All models for Australia will have the bespoke local tune which has become one of the key characteristics of all Kia cars sold in Australia. The ride and handling package for Australia was developed by the Kia Australia team over thousands of kilometres both in Korean test facilities and on Australian roads.
A further feature to maximize driving confidence, the Seltos is equipped with large disc brakes on all four corners, with brakes ranging from 280 to 305mm on the front axle (depending on powertrain and drivetrain specification) and 262 to 284mm discs on the rear axle. In all instances, the brakes provide ample stopping power at all speeds.
Technologies and features
Market and world-first features in its segment
The Seltos is a technologically advanced and refined compact SUV equipped with a range of market and world-first features. These aren’t just designed to make driving safer and less stressful, but also more enjoyable.
At the heart of the dashboard, and providing total ease of operation, is the car’s infotainment system. Depending on vehicle specification, the Seltos is available with Kia’s new 10.25-inch touchscreen AVN (audio-visual navigation), a new widescreen infotainment system with advanced split-screen functionality. This allows users to control or monitor numerous vehicle features at the same time and customize the screen to display up to three separate applications simultaneously. The driver, therefore, can choose to have a single display (such as navigation) or combine different elements on-screen.
The system provides Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility as standard. The 10.25- inch AVN is also available with a segment-first feature: a powerful eight-speaker Bose Premium Audio system.
This option, normally found in larger luxury cars costing many times the price of the Seltos, fills the car with a rich and immersive sound, taking in-car entertainment in the segment to a new level. Other infotainment systems are available for different specifications and markets, including a 3.8-inch audio display system and Kia’s 8.0-inch touchscreen system, which also offers Apple and Android compatibility.
Depending on market, the Seltos also comes with Kia’s innovative UVO CONNECT telematics. UVO CONNECT is designed to bring driving into the digital era, connecting drivers to the world around and providing useful information – via the in-car touchscreen, and compatible smartphones.
UVO features the Kia Live system, housed within the 10.25-inch TFT LCD widescreen in the center of the dashboard. The system uses its own SIM card to retrieve and update live data during a drive, such as traffic information, weather forecasts and points of interest.
The second element of the UVO system is the UVO App, designed for compatibility on Android and Apple smartphones. The app offers users peace of mind with a range of
features to provide diagnostic data about their car and the trips they take. The UVO system is free to users for the first three years, and includes stolen vehicle notification and tracking, safety alerts, auto collision notification and emergency assistance.
The cabin is available with an optional Sound Mood Lighting, which emits soft ambient light via 3D-patterned panels in the doors and dashboard. Light pulses in time to the beat of music playing through the audio system, with eight customizable colours and six themes to illuminate the cabin.
The driver can also benefit from two new features to maximize clarify of information. The first of these innovations is the optional new 8.0-inch Head-Up Display system, which projects unobtrusively relevant driving information on to a small glass panel behind the steering wheel – such as turn-by-turn navigation directions and vehicle speed information.
An optional 7.0-inch fully-digital instrument cluster is designed to deliver key driving information as clearly as possible. With a high-definition display, the digital cluster replaces the conventional speedometer and tachometer dials found in the brand’s other passenger cars. Its single, seamless display incorporates pin-sharp digital dials for vehicle and engine speeds, and subtly changes the information and graphics presented depending on different drive modes.
A multi-function display between the digital dials communicates turn-by-turn navigation instructions, audio information, phone calls and contacts, and in-depth trip information, as well as vehicle diagnostics alerts, and pop-up notifications linked to the car’s various active safety and driver assist technologies. It replaces the physical dials available with different specifications.
Additional features that maximize the cabin’s utility and comfort include a wireless smartphone charger at the base of the dashboard, as well as an electronic parking brake, and power-adjustable front seats.
Full range of advanced active safety systems available
Kia’s passive and active safety systems ensure that Seltos occupants remain well protected on every journey. With the safety of occupants a number-one priority for the brand in all of its cars, Kia is targeting the most rigorous safety standards in every market in which the Seltos will be sold.
The Seltos’ body is made up of a blend of steel and aluminium, maximizing torsional rigidity while keeping body weight low. With a high proportion of Advanced High-Strength Steel components, the rigid bodyshell reduces road vibrations and enhances occupant safety in the event of a collision.
The Seltos is fitted with up to six airbags, as well as a suite of electronic vehicle safety systems. These include Kia’s Vehicle Stability Management system as standard, incorporating traction control and electronic stability control. The car is fitted with an Anti-lock Braking System, a Traction Control System, a Brake-force Assist System and Hill-start Assist Control, as well as front and rear parking sensors, for assistance when parking.
Matching its high-tech comfort and convenience features, the Seltos is offered with a range of Kia’s latest advanced driving assistance systems. These include Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control, Blind-spot Collision Warning and Blind-spot Collision Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist, Forward Collision Warning with car and pedestrian detection, Lane Keeping Assist, and Highway Driving Assist.
Also offered is a new Driver Attention Warning-Plus system, which advises drivers to take a break if the system detects signs of fatigue and alerts the driver if the vehicle in front appears to be weaving in its lane.
A new Safe Exit Assist function warns occupants of traffic (including bicycles and motorcycles) before they open their door into the road.
Finally, Lane Following Assist is also available – Kia’s ‘Level Two’ autonomous driving technology which controls acceleration, braking and steering. Lane Following Assist can track vehicles and road markings ahead to keep the car in-lane and a safe distance from any cars in front.
A Rear-View Monitor is also available, aiding drivers when completing low-speed manoeuvres.
Production and sales
Built in Korea and India and on-sale in global markets from the second half of 2019
Kia Seltos will be made at two of Kia’s production facilities – in Anantapur District, Andhra Pradesh, India, and in Gwangju, Korea.
Sales of Kia’s new global SUV are due to commence during this month in Korea, with global markets to follow later in 2019.