Kia has officially revealed its new Stonic SUV. The compact crossover is set to become an important “conquest” model for the Korean manufacturer in what is one of Europe’s newest and fastest-growing vehicle segments.
The B-SUV segment currently accounts for 1.1 million new car sales in Europe each year – around seven per cent of the market – and is forecast to expand to more than two million annual sales by 2020.
“By volume, the B-SUV market is expected to overtake the C-SUV segment by 2020, when more than one in ten new cars sold in Europe will be from the Stonic’s segment. The B-SUV segment attracts buyers from across the spectrum, with 21 per cent of all customers upsizing from a supermini, and another 15 per cent downsizing from their family hatchbacks. Cars like the Stonic also appeal to those looking to replace their compact MPVs,” says Michael Cole, Kia’s chief operating officer in Europe.
Designed in Europe, in collaboration with the brand’s Korean design studio, the Stonic is immediately recognisable as a Kia owing to key signature styling elements, such as the ‘tiger-nose’ grille. The body also incorporates 51 per cent high strength steel. On the inside there’s a 352-litre boot complete with a two-step boot floor.
Under the bonnet, the front-wheel drive car will get a range of downsized, turbocharged petrol and diesel engines at launch, each paired with a manual transmission. As well as 1.25- or 1.4-litre naturally-aspirated petrol engines, there will also be a 1.0-litre T-GDI engine, producing 118 bhp. A 1.6-litre diesel engine will complete the range, offering the lowest emissions in the line-up.
The Stonic will also come fitted as standard with electronic stability control and vehicle stability management; the latter including torque vectoring by braking, straight line stability, and cornering brake control.
The brand new model goes on sale across Europe during the third quarter of 2017.