You had me at Sel...


Under the microscope this week is the very popular Kia Seltos. Out on our roads it seems like there is one around every corner, and I think I know why after driving the two-litre LX Plus model. Kia is like the gift that keeps on giving!

The Kia Seltos has five different spec levels across the range, starting from the LX priced at $32,490 plus ORC working up to the range-topping Limited Turbo, priced at $47,490 plus ORC. All models except the LX have three years or 45,000 k/m scheduled servicing included, which is an extremely nice touch.

From a warranty perspective, when you buy a Kia Seltos you are covered for up to five years or 100,000 k/m (whichever occurs first), plus five-years unlimited kilometer roadside assistance.

The Seltos is a hard car to pass if you’re in the market for medium-sized SUV. It just does everything right. The front is staunch, giving it the appearance of a larger vehicle that really means business - in fact the overall exterior design has definitely kept up with the modern looks we all demand in a new car.

Inside the cabin, the set up was hard to fault. We’re talking very comfortable, with every conceivable feature imaginable, and it drove fantastically well. In the LX Plus there are a myriad of standard features, such as blind spot detection, rear cross traffic alert and cruise control that will match the speed of the car in front. It even reads road lines and gently nudges you back into the middle of the lane should you drift.

This is only a small handful of the features on offer, and are standard from the LX Plus upwards. I have mentioned the ease of use of the Kia stereo system before, and this is no different. After being in and out of countless cars over the years, I reckon Kia have done a superb job with their current infotainment system.

It really doesn’t take long to work out how it all works thanks to big buttons, a big, clear 10.25-inch screen and some very clever programming. Things like changing a radio station or pairing your phone is easy, and whilst on the topic of phones ... yup, there’s a nice big spot just in front of the gear selector that easily housed my S20 Note Ultra. Apple Carplay or Android Auto is easy to set up, so you have a full range of phone connectivity. 

I found the drive quiet, which is a big plus considering the hard roads we drive on. It steered very well and was a confident-feeling vehicle on the wet roads. The 110kW two-litre motor, buttoned up to Kia’s Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT), performed better than I expected. It’s not the kind of car that is going to make record breaking lap times around Bathurst, but when you need a bit of grunt and squeeze the loud pedal the motor comes to life and gets the car up to speed in a timely manner without screaming in pain at you.

It is smooth - the gear changes are smooth and it changed at all the right times quickly and efficiently. Published fuel efficiency figures for the two-litre Seltos are 6.8L per 100km, so it’s great on the gas as well. This was a hugely enjoyable drive, and even from the roomy back seats it would be great! It is a very safe vehicle too, with the Kia Seltos scoring the maximum five star5 Star ANCAP Safety rating.

I could easily write so much more on the Kia Seltos, because I now know why there is one around every corner, and what we have here is a very strong market competitor - an SUV that you just need to get into and experience for yourself. Great work Kia, you’ve hit the nail on the head with this one!

The Kia Seltos line-up starts at $32,490 plus ORC for the LX. We tested the Kia Seltos LX Plus, available from $36,490 which gains autonomous emergency braking, blind spot detection and blind spot collision assist, rear cross traffic avoidance assist, advanced smart cruise control with stop go, electronic parking brake with auto hold, rear privacy glass and satellite navigation.

If you want to take a look at a Kia Seltos, Tauranga Motor Company is your local dealer. Open seven days-a-week, they can be found at 100 Hewletts Road and contacted on: 07 578 1378.


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