Kia updates its 'Little Titans', the Picanto and Rio

  • New three-grade Picanto 5-door line-up
  • Additional equipment added to the Picanto line-up
  • New Picanto 5-door pricing starts from £8,545
  • Four trim grades in restructured 5-door Rio range
  • Equipment upgrades for many 5-door Rio models
  • New Rio 5-door priced from £10,945

Kia has refreshed and upgraded its 'little titans', the Picanto and Rio, with simplified model structures, extra equipment and new trim grades on its 5-door models to make them even more appealing in an increasingly competitive UK small-car market.

There are now three trim grades in the 5-door Picanto line-up – ‘1 Air’, ‘SE’ and ‘Sport’. ‘SE’ replaces the former ‘SR7’ and ‘2’ grades, with ‘Sport’ taking the place of the ‘3’ and ‘4’ grade. The entry-level ‘1’ model has been discontinued, but the range pricing continues to start from £8,545.

The new Rio 5-door line-up consists of ‘1 Air’, ‘SE’, ‘3’ and ‘4’ grades. ‘SE’ takes the place of the previous ‘SR7’ and ‘2’ grades and the former entry-level grade ‘1’ has been discontinued. Rio 5-door pricing starts from £10,945 for the ‘1 Air’ – the same price as the old level ‘1’ model.

More equipment for all 5-door Picantos

With the new Picanto ‘1 Air’ offered at the same £8,545 price as the old ‘1’ model, it means that this new entry-level version gains air conditioning as a free upgrade. This model also now benefits from Bluetooth, a leather-trimmed steering wheel and front seat belt height adjustment as no-cost additions.

The new mid-range ‘SE’ grade has all the equipment that was standard on the previous ‘SR7’, plus automatic air conditioning and Kia's Intelligent Stop & Go (ISG) engine stop/start system with the manual gearbox. This grade is offered with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine and a manual gearbox from £10,395, or a 1.25-litre four-cylinder unit with automatic transmission from £11,395.

The new Picanto ‘Sport’ sharp looks are enhanced by stylish new front and rear bumpers and a twin-tipped exhaust tailpipe. There are also additional side sill mouldings painted to match the body colour. The ‘Sport’ models are finished in exclusive red, black or white paintwork. Sporty-looking five-barrel 15-inch alloy wheels shod with 175/50 tyres are the final finishing touch.

This is complemented by the equally sporty interior. The seats are in grey/black faux leather with striking red cloth cushions and backrests to match the inserts on the doors. There are aluminium pedals with non-slip rubber pads, while the centre fascia, steering wheel bezel and gearshifter top are finished in classy gloss black.

Standard equipment includes satellite navigation, automatic air conditioning, cruise control and a speed limiter. ‘Sport’ models are powered by the 1.25-litre engine and are available with a manual gearbox and ISG from £11,995 or with automatic transmission from £12,595.

New models and equipment upgrades for the Rio

As with the Picanto, the new five-door Rio ‘1 Air’ now includes air conditioning yet is offered at the same price as the former grade ‘1’ model from £10,945.

The new ‘SE’ is available with a 1.25-litre petrol engine or a 1.1-litre diesel, priced from £12,995 and £14,295 respectively. The ‘SE’ features all the equipment which was standard on the former ‘SR7’ plus a significant package of extra items – automatic air conditioning, front foglights, a supervision instrument cluster, a rain sensor, cruise control and speed limiter, electrically folding, adjustable and heated door mirrors with integrated indicators.

Grades ‘3’ and ‘4’ are unchanged and retain their high level of specification.