Kia has revealed the first details and images of the facelifted Picanto, which has just gone on sale in South Korea as the Morning. The revamp sees a fair few changes to the lovable city car, along with a consolidation of the outgoing car’s standard, GT Line and X-Line variants into a single model, the Urban.
Retaining the sporty general aesthetic of the GT Line, the Picanto gets a redesigned front end, the blanked-off “tiger nose” grille receiving chrome slats and a textured lower edge. The latter extends into the new headlights, which now feature four-point LED daytime running lights that bear a striking resemblance to the ones on the Porsche Taycan, flanking the reshaped halogen projectors.
The rest of the front bumper has also been re-profiled with a six-point lower grille that carries angular fog light surrounds. Gloss black trim connects the lower grille with the corner air inlets, which now come with fins on the outer edges.
The rear has also been revised with three-dimensional tail lights, slimmer horizontal reflectors and reverse lights and fake corner vents. The GT Line’s neat dual chrome tailpipes have unfortunately been replaced by fake tips on either side of the diffuser insert. The facelift also adds Honeybee yellow paint and new 14- and 16-inch alloy wheel options, the latter with a machined finish.
Inside, the changes are more minor, with the option of orange decorative trim being the only visual update. In-car technology has been given a step up with an optional 4.2-inch colour multi-info display and a pair of infotainment systems with a larger eight-inch touchscreen.
The range-topping UVO navigation system brings Internet connectivity to the table, allowing users to control certain vehicle functions like door locks and air-conditioning remotely via a smartphone app. It also adds over-the-air map updates, connectivity to home devices, multiple Bluetooth device connectivity and voice control using Kakao’s AI technology. Driver’s side seat ventilation is also now available as an option.
Also given a big boost is safety. While the current Picanto is already available with autonomous emergency braking, the facelift introduces a camera at the top of the windscreen, adding features like lane departure warning and lane centring assist – the latter is a first in the segment, Kia says. Blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert have also been added.
The engine lineup has also been consolidated. The Picanto is currently offered with a choice of 1.0 litre three-cylinder and 1.25 litre four-cylinder petrol engines as well as a turbocharged version of the former, but Korean buyers can only get the new car with the naturally-aspirated three-pot.
The latest Smartstream G version makes 76 PS at 6,200 rpm and 95 Nm at 3,750 rpm, up 9 PS and down 1 Nm from the previous engine. It is mated to a four-speed automatic transmission and delivers a claimed combined fuel consumption figure of 15.7 km per litre.
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