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Updated Kia Picanto and Rio now on sale

Kia has introduced facelifted versions of the Picanto and Rio small cars, priced from £10,745 and £13,395 respectively.

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On sale from today, both models have been updated inside and out, and gain revised engine line-ups and new equipment.

Changes to the 13-model Picanto line-up centre around new safety systems and telematics technologies that are more in line with larger models, plus new ‘Smartstream’ engines that offer lower CO2.

Five trims are offered, with the GT-Line and X-Line getting particular exterior updates. The Picanto also offers Kia’s new ‘Phase II’ UVO Connect telematics technologies, enhancing vehicle connectivity, with a new 8-inch touchscreen display now offered on grade ‘3’ models and above, replacing the previous 7-inch system. It also features Bluetooth multi-connection with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Smartstream engine line-up features a 99hp 1.0-litre T-GDi engine, or a 66hp 1.0-litre DPi engine, both with a five-speed manual as standard and with emissions from 110g/km. The Picanto also debuts Kia’s new five-speed automated manual gearbox, available an option on all grades, except ‘1’.

New advanced driver assistance systems also debut. Forward collision-avoidance assist with vehicle and pedestrian detection is standard equipment from the ‘2’ trim upwards. The updated Picanto is also equipped with Kia’s Vehicle Stability Management, Torque Vectoring by Braking, Cornering Brake Controland Straight-line Stability systems as standard as well as seven airbags.

For the updated Rio, the addition of mild hybrid engines is a key focus, alongside new ‘Smartstream’ engines and a new ‘clutch-by-wire’ intelligent manual transmission.

As with the Picanto, it introduces minor exterior updates while the biggest change for the interior is the addition of Kia’s brand-new ‘Phase II’ UVO Connect infotainment system and a new larger 8-inch touchscreen, available on grade ‘2’ models and above, plus a higher-resolution colour 4.2-inch supervision cluster display.

The Rio is the first Kia powered by a petrol mild-hybrid electric vehicle powertrain. The new ‘EcoDynamics+’ powertrain pairs Kia’s new ‘Smartstream’ 1.0-litre T-GDi engine with its 48V mild hybrid tech system, maximising fuel efficiency with electric torque assistance and regenerative braking.

The new ‘EcoDynamics+’ powertrain reduces the Rio’s CO2 emissions and is offered on the 118bhp versions of the new engine. It’s available with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, which also gets a Drive Mode Select system, but is also one of the first models from Kia to be equipped with the brand’s new intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT). The ‘clutch-by-wire’ system brings lower emissions, which start from 122g/km.

The line-up also includes an updated 1.25-litre ‘Smartstream’ engine.

As with the Picanto, the Rio is among the first Kia vehicles to offer new ‘Phase II’ UVO Connect telematics features, providing a range of services. The system also features Online Voice Recognition, supported by server technologies. The UVO App, compatible with Android and Apple smartphones, also offers a range of new ‘Phase II’ features, enabling owners to activate a range of functions and features remotely, such as sending route directions to the car remotely.

Both models come with Kia’s seven-year/100,000-mile warranty as standard.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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