Side effects include great technology, good looks

Side effects include great technology, good looks

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Advantages: Space loads. great technology; exuberant acceleration with turbo engine. Smart design throughout; strong security ratings

Disadvantages: Weak basic engine with unusual transmission. lots of hard plastics

Kia Seltos may sound like a prescription drug advertised during Jeopardy! which can cause 3 minute side effects, but in fact, is a great little SUV that is just as sensible and stylish. As a member of the growing midcompact SUV class and as one of the best available, the 2023 Kia Seltos ranks between smaller and cheaper compact models (such as the Kia’s Soul) and larger, more expensive compact models (such as Kia’s expanded Sportage). You might think that it can cut the pie very thin, but thanks to the smart inner packaging and plenty of feature content, the Seltos should be the right size and offer more than enough equipment for a price that stays well below $ 30,000. .

Now, there are a lot of hard plastics all over the interior that betray its price (especially compared to the new, similarly priced Honda HR-V), but a plethora of interesting design elements and a large center touch screen help draw the eye away from that’s all. The base engine is also a bit sad, but the available turbo offers truly stunning acceleration that rivals SUVs that can cost $ 10,000 more. Basically, there is not much to complain about. The Seltos may not sound like a car you would brag about buying to your friends, but you could.

Interior & Technology | Passenger & cargo area | Efficiency & Fuel Economy

What is it like to drive | Pricing & Care Levels | Conflict assessments and safety features

What’s new for 2023?

Equipment S levels get blind-spot and rear-end traffic warning, leaving the LX AWD as the only equipment without it. Otherwise, Seltos is transferred to 2023 unchanged.

How is the interior and technology of the Seltos car?

If there is one area where Seltos betrays its relatively low price, it is the quality of its interior materials. The door sills, dashboard, center console and luggage compartment are all hard plastic – there is so much more to it than just the Honda HR-V and Kia’s larger and more expensive Sportage. To be fair, this is not uncommon for the class, and Kia designers have cleverly crafted its accountants, highlighting several key areas with upgraded materials and discreet design elements. The 3D geometric pattern of the speaker grilles, the metallic face of the front passenger grip, the sleek silver lining that surrounds the air vents and the start button and optional upgrades that include a nice gray heather liner and the black dashboard can be black. bright blue or sewn fake leather.

There is also plenty of user-friendly technology. Standard on the Seltos LX is an easy-to-use 8-inch touchscreen with standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay packaging, while every other investment has access to the same 10.25-inch touchscreen with the more expensive Kias, which enhances functionality with the widescreen layout ( is a $ 400 option on the S, standard on everything else). We also like the two-tier storage solution for smartphones: the smaller disk on top for holding and storing a phone (it’s also a wireless charger on the top panel) and the deeper bottom bin with two USB ports that can save another phone or whatever you want.

So while Kia has pinched the pens in some areas, it ends up with a net positive result with delivery to areas that are ultimately more important.

How big is Seltos?

The Seltos is one of the growing SUVs we call midcompact. Externally, it is 4 inches shorter than the Kia Sportage, which is one of the smallest SUVs in its class. However, the Seltos is between 2 and 8 inches longer than various sub-compact SUVs.

What really matters, though, is the amount of space you have inside and Seltos manages to make the most of its mediocre footprint. Its more box line roof line helps in this regard, providing plenty of headroom with a more airy overall feel. Many small crossovers can feel claustrophobic, especially to the rear passengers, and have poor visibility to the rear. Celtos is better. The electric eight-way driver’s seat located on the EX and SX trim levels provides ample adaptability and space, while the backs of the rear seats lie at an extremely comfortable angle. Rear legroom is also sufficient for four above-average adults.

The loading space is very good. There is a generous 26.6 cubic feet back there, which allowed us to secure five suitcases with free space. While not the best in its mid-range (Ford Bronco Sport and VW Taos are bigger), it’s right up there. The maximum load capacity of 62.8 cubic feet is also generous and speaks for its more box dimensions that will make transporting bulkier objects easier.

What are Seltos fuel economy and performance standards?

The Seltos is available with two engines, which are connected to the investment level.

The LX, EX and S are powered by a four-liter 2.0-liter in 146 hp and 132 pound-feet of torque – a modest amount consistent with compact SUVs. The S is the only trim that can be used with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, while every other level of equipment is AWD only. The base engine is always mated to an ever-changing gearbox (named “IVT”) that simulates gear ratios. Fuel economy is 27 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway and 29 mpg in combination with AWD and 29/35/31 with the FWD S investment.

The S Turbo and SX Turbo have a 1.6-liter in-line supercharged four-wheel drive that delivers 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. This is an amount that is consistent with larger, more expensive crossovers, and with less traction weight, it is therefore faster. Comes only with four-wheel drive and automatic seven-speed dual-clutch manual. Fuel economy hits on 25/30/27, which is also comparable to these larger, more expensive crossovers.

The Seltos does not offer a hybrid drivetrain (neither does any of its competitors), but Kia’s family of plug-in hybrids, plug-in hybrids and EV SUVs are similar in size and have been redesigned for 2023.

How is Seltos driving?

We have not yet tested the Seltos with the basic drive system. We found that it does not have low power in the lighter sedan Kia Forte – which is probably not a good sign – and the “IVT” gearbox is unusual. It simulates the gear ratios in most driving conditions, making it feel quite normal (somewhat like the Turbo dual-clutch transmission, in fact), but when accelerating hard, it will hang in the corners like a CVT before finally “raising” the revs. an analogy. It’s weird, but again, we’ve not tried it on Seltos.

Turbo models are a different story. Although many cars have Normal and Sport driving modes, which, among other things, make the engine feel a little more vibrant by modifying the throttle and transmission response times, these at Seltos make you feel like you suddenly fell into a different engine. It may be the result of increased turbulence from the turbocharger in addition to throttle differences and gear changes, but the result is a drivetrain that reasonably feels extravagant in Sport mode versus just adequate in Normal. Pretty careful, actually.

The rest of the Seltos driving experience is typical of a Kia: capable, well-coordinated but not particularly memorable. The ride creates surprisingly bigger hits for a cheap crossover, perhaps in part due to the 18-inch wheels being the largest available size. At the same time, its chassis looks calm in corners and we could happily push it on a mountain road without feeling like a desperate fish out of water. It never goes beyond sports like the Mazda CX-30 does, but that’s more than a complaint. There is also a little noise from the road inside, another indicative sign of its price.

What other Kia Seltos reviews can I read?

Kia Seltos First Drive Review

Our first look at Seltos, including more information on its design and engineering. Also some photos of him with deer.

Kia Seltos luggage test

We find out how much the cargo capacity of the 26.6 cubic feet of Seltos translates in terms of real material.

What is the price of Seltos 2023?

Price starts at $ 24,135 for the Seltos LX, which includes all-wheel drive as standard. The Seltos S starts at just over $ 50 and has standard front-wheel drive, but comes with such a huge amount of extras that it certainly seems like the best place to start your shopping trip in Seltos. Additional accessories include proximity key and push-button start, remote control, additional front and rear USB port, UVO voice control, automatic climate control, upgraded exterior cladding, roof rails, upholstery fabric / leather, a leather upholstery steering wheel and center console armrest with vinyl lining. The 10.25-inch touch screen and built-in navigation are a $ 400 option. That goes beyond the generous content shared by the LX and S, including 17-inch alloy wheels, personal data rear glass, six-speaker audio system, 8-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. If you have to drive on all wheels, it’s $ 1,550 extra on the S.

True, any of these S-trim levels are fully representative of the functional and modern features of the Seltos (note the cool blue liner in the lower left photo), but we must also admit that the add-ons acquired by the SX and Nightfall Edition (especially their turbo engine) for a perfectly reasonable amount make the Seltos the rare small crossover whose more expensive equipment levels continue to be a high value market.

All prices below include the $ 1,295 destination charge. Everything is available as standard with four-wheel drive except the S.

Seltos LX: $ 24,135
Seltos S (FWD): $ 24,185
Seltos S (AWD): $ 25,685
Seltos EX: $ 27,435
Seltos Nightfall Edition: $ 28,335
Seltos SX: $ 29,635

What are safety assessments and driver support features?

Each 2022 Seltos includes a standard pedestrian collision warning with automatic pedestrian and automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and lane keeping assistance, a driver care warning system and an automatic grand staircase. All but the LX include blind-spot warning systems and rear-end traffic lights. The SX adds Kia’s highly customizable Highway Driving Assist.

Seltos received four of the five stars for overall and frontal collision protection in state tests. Received five stars for lateral impact protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Seltos a top safety choice for its best possible ratings in all relevant categories, except headlight performance. While the SX lining had the best possible “Good”, all the others got “Poor” for their headlights.

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