Kia to challenge Hyundai i20 Active with a hatchback-based crossover

We already told you about the launch and expansion plans of Kia in India. The Korean brand is looking forward towards its debut int the country this years and many dealerships have already popped up sporting the Kia logo. The first car from the company is likely to be the SP-concept based compact SUV which will take on the likes of the Hyundai Creta and the Nissan Kicks.

However, word has it that the company will also launch a small SUV-Hatch crossover car in a segment that sits below the sub-4 meter SUVs. The hatchback-based crossover is likely to be similar to the Hyundai i20 Active.

Kia Sp Featured

Kia has already revealed its plans to launch six new cars over the course of three years as the first leg of its Indian journey. The fist of them, as already mentioned will be the SP concept based compact SUV while the second will be a made in India SUV which will be revealed at the 2020 Delhi Auto Expo. The third will be the cross hatch car which we were talking about earlier. It is likely that the company will launch it somewhere in 2021. While that is still a lot of time away, the market for such cars hasn’t been explored very well too.

Currently, the Hyundai i20 Active and the Honda WR-V is the only cars which have successfully wooed customers in the hatchback-based crossover segments. Others like the Maruti Suzuki Celerio X have failed miserably while some like the Tata Tiago NRG have done relatively well. However, they were all not truly cross-hatch designs but rather a result of an afterthought – some body kit here and blacked strips there along with a little raise in ground clearance does not make a hatchback into a SUV cross car.

Kia Ceed Front

Kia feels that the SUV segment has a lot of scope in India and therefore is cashing on it to help the company grow. Last few years have shown an increase in public interest towards SUVs and similar designed small cars too. The reason for this can be attributed to the high ground clearance and the fact that SUV inspired hatches look bigger than they actually are.

Korean carmaker Kia has already announced plans to launch six models in India in three years. The line-up is expected to be a mix of made-in-India and assembled-in-India models, the first of which will be the production version of the SP Concept SUV that goes on sale in August this year. The second made-in-India model will be a compact SUV that will get an Auto Expo 2020 reveal. While these launches will be interspersed by locally-assembled models from Kia’s international line-up, we have learnt that Kia’s third made-for-India product will be a cross-hatchback scheduled for launch in 2021.

The cross-hatch by Kia, when launched, will rival the Honda WR-V and the Hyundai i20 Active. As of now, there is no information on the powertrain and transmission options but it is expected that the company will employ a 1.0 litre turbocharged petrol engine with around 115 Bhp on tap along with a 1.5-litre diesel motor on the car. Whether or not will it be a success is a question that only time can answer for now.


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