Kia Sonet: First look review and walkaround video

After showcasing the concept model of the Sonet at the 2020 Auto Expo, Kia has finally unveiled the production version of the car. The Sonet is a highly-anticipated car, especially after the market gave a massive response to the first two cars from the brand – the Seltos and the Carnival. It will take on the high-grossing vehicles like the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Venue, Tata Nexon. The segment is getting populated quickly and even Toyota and Nissan will launch their respective vehicles later in the same segment soon. We spent some time with the upcoming Sonet and here is what we think about the car.

Kia Sonet: Design

Since the primary focus of the all-new Sonet in the Indian market, Kia says that the vehicle is highly inspired by the Indian architecture and is made with Indian customers in mind. Well, the first time you will look at the vehicle, you will find Kia’s DNA in the car but it does not look like the downsized version of the Seltos, which gives the Sonet a unique identity. It gets an aggressive-looking Tiger Nose grille that is inspired by the Stepwells of India.

The headlamps are sleek and you will see the “Heartbeat” LED DRL that you get to see on the Seltos too. Down below, projector foglamps make the design even more interesting. The Sonet will be offered in both Tech Line and GT Line variants like the Seltos. The GT Line version gets red highlights all over. It gets a muscular bumper and faux skid plates.

The Sonet gets strong wheel arches with beautiful looking alloy wheels. The GT Line variants also get red-painted brake callipers and red highlights on the wheels too. The higher-end variants will get the dual-tone colour option that looks quite aggressive and very sporty. The window line makes a sharp upright move on the C-Pillar that adds to the aggressive design.

At the rear, the first thing that will grab your attention is the design of the tail lamps. They look inspired by the headlamps and gets small crystal LEDs that look, well expensive! There is a bar light connecting both the tail lamps but it is only a reflector. Down below, the car gets a muscular bumper with faux twin-muffler design. The GT Line variants continue to get the red highlights in the rear too.

Kia Sonet: Cabin

The Sonet feels rich and premium when you enter the cabin. The GT Line variants get an all-black dashboard while the Tech Line variants get the dual-tone layout. We only had the GT Line variant to ourselves so here is what the top-end version of the Sonet feels like. The bucket seats with faux leather on it are very comfortable. Since we are yet to drive the car, we cannot comment much on the long-distance comfort but it sure feels comfortable.

The Sonet is also the only car in the segment to offer ventilated front seats so that will keep you comfortable in hot summer weather. The steering wheel is flatbottom and gets a leather cover with contrasting red stitches. It is the same layout that we get to see on the seats too. The steering wheel also gets mounted controls for the infotainment display and cruise control.

Kia gets a massive 10.25-inch infotainment system with the Connected features. It offers live traffic updates too. Kia has gone a notch up and also offers the remote start of the engine from the key itself. Apart from that, you can also use the smartphone app to start, locate, set temperature and a host of other things through the connected UVO system. The dashboard is neatly laid out and it gets unique controls of the AC that are easy to use. Kia also offers a 7-speaker system from Bose with connected ambient lighting.

At the rear, you do get a decent amount of space. With large windows, the rear of the cabin does feel quite spacious and airy. Even the rear seats have grooves that fit your body very well. There is a foldable armrest with two cup holders. You also get charging point and AC vents in the rear. Most importantly, the Sonet gets the integrated air purifier and the display is located just above the rear AC vents. Overall, the Sonet offers over 30 first-in-segment features including front parking sensors.

Kia Sonet: Engine and Transmission

Sonet will offer three engine options just like the Hyundai Venue. There is a 1.2-litre naturally-aspirated engine, a 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine and 1.5-litre turbocharged diesel engine. The naturally aspirated petrol will only offer a 5-speed manual transmission while the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol will come with 7-speed DCT automatic, 6-speed manual and 6-speed Intelligent Manual Transmission (IMT). The IMT will be a manual transmission but without a clutch pedal. The 1.5-litre diesel engine will get a manual as well as a six-speed automatic transmission. Kia also offers drive modes and grip mods with the Sonet. However, only the higher-end variants will get the feature.

Impactful?

The Sonet has its own identity and looks impressive in the segment. It is a late entrant in the market but makes up for that with a long list of features with many unique ones. The only piece of the puzzle here is the price, which we get to know next month.