Industry News | Kia Picanto Irish launch - First Impressions

Kia Picanto Irish launch - First Impressions

Car Buyers Guide attended the Irish launch of the new Kia Picanto...

Today we attended the Irish launch for the new Kia Picanto. The all new Picanto will go on sale in Ireland from May 2nd. Now in its third generation, the Kia Picanto is virtually the same size as the outgoing model, say for a slightly longer wheelbase. The exterior has some noticeable differences from the second generation. A redesigned front grille and new projection headlamps help to give the Picanto a more muscular appearance. The added lines running around the side-skirting and wheel arches further exhibit the sturdier looking body that Kia are trying to achieve for the Picanto.

Daragh attended the international launch in Barcelona last month. Check out the video below:

Today we tested the entry level TX trim with a 1.0 litre naturally aspirated petrol engine. I had limited time with the Picanto so this is my first impressions as opposed to a comprehensive review. 

There is also a 1.25 litre engine available, but only with a four-speed automatic transmission in Ireland. A third, 1.0 litre T-GDI (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine, will be available in Ireland towards the backend of 2017.

The 1.0 litre engine was found wanting when it comes to power output. The Picanto’s initial acceleration isn’t too bad, but it struggles to find that little bit extra oomph at higher speeds. Although I haven’t had the opportunity to test the 1.25 litre engine yet; it’s 83 hp output compared to the 66 hp supplied from the 1 litre engine will give the Picanto a needed boost in power.

The steering responsiveness was a big surprise for me. The Picanto handles very well and the steering is agile and light, which is perfect for close quarters city driving. There is a fair bit of road noise from inside the Kia Picanto as there usually is with city cars. The refinement inside the cabin is decent, but not excellent. I personally found the suspension to be a little stiff when going over bumps in the road, but not to a degree where I would consider it an issue.  

Leg room is a bit tight for any adults sitting in the back, you would struggle to get three people sitting comfortably in the second row. The Picanto comes with the largest boot space in its segment at 200 litres, extendable to 255 litres.

The entry level TX trim we tested comes with USB and AUX connections as well as Bluetooth and is priced at €13,295. Remote audio controls, electric heated mirrors, rear power windows, 4 speakers, leather covered steering wheel and body coloured mirrors and door handles are also included.

David Stafford


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