The 12-model range offers two engines and four different specification grades. Picture: SUPPLIED
The 12-model range offers two engines and four different specification grades. Picture: SUPPLIED

Kia’s diminutive Picanto hatchback has become a favourite among budget-focused car buyers since its debut in 2003, and the current third-generation model launched in 2017 added more modernity to the menu.

For the 2020 model year the car receives a number of specification and safety updates.

The entry-level Start-badged models for the first time acquire a front passenger airbag and ABS brakes, which means that dual front airbags and ABS are now standard across the Picanto range, as are ISOFIX child seat anchors.

Other standard features across the Start range include power steering, air-conditioning, as well as a radio with RDS and MP3 capability, Aux and USB connector jacks, Bluetooth connectivity and two speakers. The Picanto Start as before rides on 13-inch steel wheels with plastic covers.

The Picanto Start will from now on only be available with the 1.0l three cylinder petrol engine with outputs of 49kW and 96Nm, with a choice of five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmissions.

Next up in the range is the Street specification which as before offers electric front windows, steering wheel-mounted audio remote controls, remote central locking with an alarm and immobiliser, and driver’s seat height adjustment. A new feature is the standard inclusion of an infotainment system with 20cm colour touchscreen including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. In addition, the Picanto Street now also features rear electric windows as well as electric heated side mirrors.

Street models are available with the 1.0l engine or the 61kW/122Nm 1.2l petrol engine, with a choice of five-speed manual or four-speed auto.

Stepping up, the revised Picanto Style models are a more stylish offering due to a leather-clad three-spoke steering wheel with audio remote controls and a leather-clad gear shifter. Side mirrors now feature integrated indicator lamps, and also gain electric folding capabilities. The Picanto Style also features 14-inch alloy wheels.

The range topping Picanto Smart in addition gets LED daytime running lights, sporty alloy wheels and full-leather interior.

Park distance control with reversing camera has been discontinued on the Smart, and instead Kia offers a sunroof — previously available only as an option — standard across the range.

The Smart is sold only with the 1.2 engine, with a choice of manual or auto gearboxes.

“In tough economic times where the pressure on affordability is not letting up, the revision of the Picanto range for 2020 brings a significant value offering to the market,” says Stephen Crosse, Sales Director of Kia Motors SA.


Pricing:

Kia Picanto 1.0 Start Manual — R167,995

Kia Picanto 1.0 Start Automatic —  R181,995

Kia Picanto 1.0 Street Manual — R179,995

Kia Picanto 1.0 Street Automatic — R193,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Street Manual — R188,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Street Automatic — R202,995

Kia Picanto 1.0 Style Manual — R189,995

Kia Picanto 1.0 Style Automatic — R203,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Style Manual — R198,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Style Automatic — R212,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Smart Manual — R219,995

Kia Picanto 1.2 Smart Automatic v R233,995

* Includes a five-year unlimited kilometre warranty and two-year/30,000km service plan.