The new Kia Sonet. The best just got better

Kia South Africa this week introduces the new Sonet to the South African market, building on a range that has surpassed all expectations since its local introduction in 2021 with a significantly updated exterior design, an upgraded interior*, and a repositioned range in the highly competitive A-SUV segment of the market. Lauded for its outstanding build quality and overall reliability, Kia’s evergreen compact SUV now offers consumers an even better value proposition than before.

“With its sporty, eye-catching design, high-quality features and fun-to-drive dynamics, the Sonet has helped make Kia the brand of choice for trendy urbanites with big ambitions,” comments Gary Scott, CEO, Kia South Africa.

Renowned for its inherent engineering, quality finishes and big car attitude, Sonet remains one of the most desirable small SUVs currently on offer. With this first update to the model, we’re confident that it will only grow in popularity.”

Elevating your SUV life.

The new Kia Sonet’s exterior design, like the recently introduced new Picanto and Seltos, is inspired by Kia’s award-winning ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy, which harnesses the creative tension generated by the divergent values of nature and modernity to deliver a harmonious whole. Already a striking compact SUV, the design update to the Sonet sees the inherently sporty design embracing an even bolder and more futuristic expression that is thoroughly modern, sporty and effortlessly stylish.

At the front, the new Sonet gains a new light signature, a new front bumper, an updated iteration of Kia’s signature ‘tiger nose’ grille, and a revised fender and bonnet, all combining to create a notably more dramatic visage that visually aids the Sonet’s wide, confident stance. At the rear, this sporty, wide stance is reiterated through redesigned taillights that are horizontally connected just beneath the rear windscreen, giving Sonet a new rear light signature that complements the redesigned tailgate and rear bumper.

These changes have not made any impact on the Sonet’s dimensions: it retains a height of 1,610 mm, length of 4,110 mm and width of 1,790 mm. The long wheelbase (2,500 mm) and short rear overhang frees up space in the cabin and boot, giving the Sonet one of the roomiest cabins in its class. In fact, Sonet offers excellent leg- and headroom compared to many of its segment competitors, with its 385-litre boot capacity rated as one of the biggest in the segment. Ride comfort is ensured through a combination of a MacPherson strut set-up at the front and a coupled torsion beam axle at the rear.

Depending on the grade, two different wheel design options are available, both 16-inch in diameter. As part of its refresh, a variety of colours are also available. Complementing perennial favourites like Sparkling Silver metallic, Gravity Grey metallic, Glacier White Pearl, Aurora Black Pearl, Intense Red metallic and Imperial Blue metallic, Sonet gains one new colour option in Pewter Olive metallic. Customers also have a choice between Glacier White Pearl with a black roof or Red metallic with a black roof.

Inside, Sonet retains its high-quality, high-technology interior, with the familiar layout left largely unchanged. Two infotainment screen sizes are on offer – an 8-inch colour touchscreen and a 10.25-inch integrated colour touchscreen – depending on the grade, while ensuring that all of the car’s important controls remain intuitively positioned to reduce instances of distracted driving. A combination of black cloth and artificial leather upholstered seats are standard, while higher specification models are fitted as standard with artificial leather upholstery.

The new Kia Sonet retains the familiar, reliable naturally aspirated 1.5-litre MPI and turbocharged 1.0-litre GDi petrol engines the range is known for. The overwhelming success of the 1.5-litre powertrain has resulted in the range offering a broader variety of models with this engine, with the number of derivatives powered by the 1.0-litre T-GDi reduced.

The fuel-efficient 1.5 MPI three-cylinder engine produces 85 kW of power at 6,300 r/min and 144 Nm torque at 4,500 r/min, while the four-cylinder 1.0-litre T-GDi engine develops 88 kW of power at 6,000 r/min and 172 Nm of torque between 1,500- and 4,000 r/min. Customers have a choice between a 5-speed manual transmission or CVT when opting for the 1.5-litre engine, or a 7-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT) when opting for the 1.0 T-GDi.

Big Car Value.

It is no secret that there were high expectations for the Kia Sonet to become a staple in the local Kia line-up. As the second product to come from Kia’s newest production facility in India, Sonet immediately resonated with South African consumers who aspired to live bigger, more adventurous and more rewarding lives. “With just more than three years’ of history in the market, we have had the unique opportunity to not only cement our position in the market, but also to witness the rapid evolution of the SUV segment in South Africa as more and more players enter,” comments Crosse.

“One theme that was apparent throughout our consumer research is the highly aspirational mindset of our customers. While this is often associated with buying bigger or more expensive cars, it is clear that the majority of our Sonet customers are less concerned with bigger or more expensive, and much more concerned with quality and getting more than what they pay for. Sonet has consistently ranked highly for offering exactly that, and we’re confident that the upgraded model will once again tick all the most important boxes – and then some.”

The new Kia Sonet LX and EX range goes on sale on Tuesday, 18 June 2024, with EX Plus and SX derivatives available from late July 2024. Recommended retail pricing for the range is as follows:

Kia Sonet 1.5 LX Manual:                               R 366,995

Kia Sonet 1.5 LX CVT:                                   R 391,995

Kia Sonet 1.5 EX CVT:                                   R 411,995

Kia Sonet 1.0 T-GDi EX DCT:                        R 436,995

Kia Sonet 1.5 EX Plus CVT:                           R 454,995

Kia Sonet 1.5 SX CVT:                                   R 484,995

All Sonet models ship as standard with Kia’s industry-leading Unlimited Kilometre/5-year warranty, inclusive of Roadside Assistance. In addition, a pre-paid 4-year / 60,000 km service plan is included to give customers peace of mind and predictability when it comes to vehicle maintenance. A variety of plan extension options are available at point of sale through Kia Financial Services for customers who require even more predictability of maintenance spend.

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