The sub-brand of Hyundai, Kia Motors has officially announced its entry into the Indian market. The manufacturer has already acquired land in Andhra Pradesh for its plant that will have the capacity to make up to 3,00,000 cars a year.
Kia has also announced that the Indian operations will start with two cars; a compact sedan and a compact SUV. While the compact SUV will be an all-new product developed by the manufacturer, the compact sedan will be based on the Rio hatchback. The all generation sedan was recently showcased at the New York Auto Show and the entry-level car is priced at about Rs. 10 lakh in the US market. The same car is also available in the Chinese market and is known as Pegas.
The compact sedan is powered by a 1.4-litre petrol engine that also comes with the Hyundai Verna in India. The engine produces a maximum of 106 Bhp and 135 Nm of maximum torque. Kia may also plonk the 1.6-litre petrol engine that is also available with Verna. The diesel engine will be a 1.4-litre or 1.6-litre. Both manual and automatic transmissions will be offered.
The Rio sedan will get a long list of equipment including LED headlamps and tail lamps, a large touchscreen and navigation system integrated with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There will be climate control too. The cars will offer as many features as Hyundai does.
The compact sedan will go against the likes of Maruti Ciaz, Honda City and Hyundai Verna in the market. Kia wants to play safely in the market by offering products in the popular segments. After the launch of the compact sedan, Kia will follow up with a compact sedan based on the Rio that will take on the likes of Honda WR-V. Kia is set to start the Indian operations by the end of 2019.