Two meaningful takeaways from Kia’s 2020 Seltos SX, an urbanely-styled compact SUV that looks like it’s simultaneously trying to give Land Rover’s new Defender and Subaru’s Forester a run for their money. First, the fairly-inexpensive Seltos is packed with technology in a fashion similar to which Japanese automakers became renowned in the 1980s. Second, nobody looking at it would believe how lovely this thing rides.
The new 2021 Kia Seltos compact SUV has various color options available for each trim. See them all and get an estimated price from a dealer near you today! Update: Since this first drive was originally published in February 2020, we finished testing the Seltos. See the complete Kia Seltos road test. Kia adds another SUV choice to the mix with its.
For a shade less than $30,000, the Seltos has a 1.6-L turbocharged and direct-injected 4-cylinder engine, a 7-speed (wet) dual-clutch automated-manual transmission, torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, even LED headlights. Then there’s an expansive suite of advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS) technology and top-line electronic and driver-interface features, including a vivid 10-inch central touchscreen. The cabin is the electronics match for vehicles costing twice as much. The only trade-off? Virtually all the touchable plastics are vividly low-rent.
Equally amazing is that this small SUV, which Kia said is meant for the paper-thin white space between its funky Soul and the mainstream Sportage, has the supple and confident damping of a luxury sedan. There’s pothole-smothering absorbency – itself a rare attribute for anything “compact” – yet more-than-acceptable body control when you engage a backroads workout for the 175 hp the turbocharged 1.6-L manufactures. We were blown away time and again by the Seltos’ utter disregard for every kind of bad road surface.
We wouldn’t put a lot of stock in the off-road abilities of this decidedly car-like wagon-thing and after taking in the hard-plastic cabin fittings, you wouldn’t be wrong in suggesting the near-$30,000 price is pushing it, regardless of the Seltos SX’s extensive content. But the wide dynamic capabilities of the 2020 Seltos SX – particularly its creamy-but-capable ride – put it at the top of the segment.
2020 Kia Crossover Seltos For Sale
2020 Kia Seltos SX Turbo AWD
Kia Seltos Preis
Base price: $27,890
As tested: $29,485
Highs: High-quality ride; premium driveline and electronic tech
Lows: Downmarket cabin materials; small 1.6-L is soft at the upper end of the tach
Takeaway: Offbeat but enticing package reminiscent of 1980s Japanese cars.