Kia Carens three-row car launched: Highlights
In recent times, there has been a big push from automakers in the three-row, sub- ₹20 lakh passenger vehicle segment. Part of what's behind the push is the pandemic that is making many want to consider a people mover on wheels but one that also looks smart and is packed with features. While Hyundai Alcazar and Tata Safari are doing decent business, the three-row space is still mostly dominated by the veteran Toyota Innova Crysta. There are, of course, other three-row SUVs as well like Mahindra XUV700 and MG Hector Plus that range from around ₹12 lakh to around ₹20 lakh (ex showroom).
Will Kia Carens be a runaway hit like Seltos? Will Carens find a fancy like the Seltos did? Or will this particular Kia only be 'just an option' for prospective buyers?
Here are the highlights from the launch of Kia Carens:
Kia Carens launch event comes to an end
That is all from the launch event of Carens from Kia India. Here is the full launch report of the Carens three-row vehicle. (Click here)
Kia Carens price revealed
Kia Carens has been launched at a starting price of ₹8.99 lakh and the price goes up to ₹16.99 lakh (both prices are introductory, ex-showroom).
Kia Carens mileage claim
Kia says Carens will return up to 16.5 kmpl in the model with petrol engine, 21.3 kmpl for the one packing the diesel motor.
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Massive bookings clocked by Kia Carens in nearly a month
Kia Carens has already clocked 19,089 bookings in around a month.
Kia Carens set to grab much attention
Kia underlines Carens will appeal to both MPV and SUV buyers.
Kia to ramp up production with Carens launch
Kia says it is ready to meet the increase in demand for its products with the launch of Carens. Third shift at Anantpur facility to begin soon.
What should be the pricing for the Kia Carens?
All eyes are now on how Carens is priced. Going by past patterns - Seltos after Creta, Sonet after Venue - it is almost certain that Carens' price would hover around that of Alcazar. The Hyundai model starts at around ₹16.30 lakh and goes up to ₹20 lakh (ex showroom).
Expect Carens to sit slightly higher than this price bracket, also because there would be more variants on offer and partly also because six airbags come as standard. (Check this report for more details)
Can three-row vehicles challenge mid-size SUVs?
The demand for mid-size SUVs in India has skyrocketed in recent times with the likes of Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos leading the pack. While the response for Alcazar has been positive, it has not been able to sway people away from Creta which continues to fare remarkably well here.
And while Carens is a strong offering in its own right, it too is unlikely to deter those who may have already set their mind on the Seltos.
For both Hyundai and Kia though, it may be all good as long as all of the demand is within the family.
Kia Carens: Featuring the features
Being a Kia, there is special attention once again on the feature list on offer inside this particular product. The list includes 64-colour ambient lighting, ventilated front seats, foldable tray on the back of the front passenger seat, a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system with a host of connectivity options, a one-touch tumble down feature on the second row seat, a sunroof, among others.
Check out the first full-drive review of Kia Carens
How big is Carens?
Dimensionally, Kia Carens is nearly similar to the Hyundai Alcazar although visually, it looks a bit more compact in comparative terms. In the HT Auto first drive review, we found that the third-row space is respectable and that getting in and out from the final row is relatively easy. Of course, there is a toss up between six and seven-seat layout and the former promises to be more comfortable.
Kia Carens engine options:
At a time when many OEMs are ditching diesel engines, the Koreans continue to believe in offering a choice. Much like Alcazar, Carens is also coming with both petrol as well as diesel engine options.
There are three engine options to choose from - a 1.5-litre petrol motor, a 1.4-litre turbo petrol unit and a 1.5-litre diesel motor. There are also multiple transmission choices available.
Quick fire product onslaught from Kia India
Kia entered the Indian car market in 2019 and it wasn't really the most ideal time to come calling. First, there was a shift to BS 6 emission norms that challenges OEMs here. Then came the pandemic. And then there is the global semiconductor shortage that is still persisting and posing unprecedented challenges.
Amid all of these, Kia has confidently established itself as a formidable player with Seltos selling like hotcakes and Sonet faring reasonably well as well. Carnival does sparse numbers but the company says the luxury MPV was more a show of intent than a volume driver any way.
Carens, the meaning behind the name
When Kia officially announced that its three-row vehicle for India would be called Carens, the most obvious question we got was 'what does that name even mean?'
While Seltos and Sonet are youthful names, 'Carens', according to Kia, is a synthesis of two words - Car and Renaissance.