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First Drive

First Drive: Kia Picanto

The story:
Category:B-sector
Key rival:
Kia Picanto 1.2 MPI GT-Line
Price:£12,255
MPG:61.4mpg
Emissions:106g/km
On sale:Now

The new Kia Picanto comes with a choice of two engines and five trim levels, and the company has advanced its smallest model in terms of connectivity and driver assistance.

To these ends, the top three trims are fitted with an autonomous emergency braking system as standard, while two of the trim levels get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a seven-inch floating touchscreen to control them with. 

The car is the same size as its predecessor, but better interior packaging has increased the boot space by more than a quarter to 255 litres, which is claimed to be class-leading. The increase comes through the luggage area being deeper rather than longer, while interior space is good; carrying four adults is far from a challenge. 

That’s in a car less than 3.6 metres long, which makes it excellent for picking its way through urban traffic and slotting into tight spaces, amplified by the light steering and tight turning circle. 

Better still, that urban excellence doesn’t mean it’s no good for longer runs. This zippy 83hp 1.0-litre is the more powerful of the two models available from launch, and is properly refined. Add in the comfortable seats and the Picanto is a relaxed, if not particularly rapid, cruiser. 

There is also a 99hp 1.0 coming later this year to join the 66hp 1.0 already offered. 

This GT-Line, below just GT-Line S in the range, also looks the part thanks to the red flourishes across the interior and exterior, lifting the Picanto significantly. 
Kia Picanto GT Line S - Side & Front Image

Paul Barker

The verdict

Appealing little city car that offers decent space, light steering, manoeuvrability and decent kit.