A-segment vehicles aren’t the most exciting group of cars out there, as they tend to focus more on fuel economy, small dimensions and ease of use. They have an important role to play in the automotive eco-system. With Kia having a stake in the segment with their Picanto, the Korean carmaker introduced us to the 2021 version of the compact city car, which has matured in more ways than one.

There are many reasons why people buy A-segment vehicles like the Kia Picanto, they make good ‘first cars’ for those getting into the car market and are also ideal for someone looking for a light and easy runabout to navigate the urban jungle. The standard Picanto has always looked cute and compact in its design and proportions, we wouldn’t be surprised if it stole the hearts of many females during its run in the Kia stable – it’s just that kind of vehicle. Cute and cuddly isn’t always the way to everyone’s heart, some people still prefer a little attitude and sass when it comes to cars. Thankfully, the powers that be at Kia were very aware of this and proceeded to introduce the new Picanto X-Line to address the matter.

What’s new in the Picanto X-Line?

You don’t have to dig deep to discover what sets the new variant apart from the existing Picanto. The magic is all in the exterior styling. In X-Line trim the Picanto looks like it means business, it’s sassy with a dash of masculinity to help it appeal to a broader audience. Ride height has been raised ever so slightly to make it stand taller, and there are many other design tweaks and changes which give it a refreshed aura. The grille, front and rear bumper and both front and rear lights have been revised. Kia has also extended their colour palette in the new X-Line, bringing it to a total of 10 vibrant colours. This also gives the Picanto a fun and youthful side. If this doesn’t do the trick, you can always spec your Picanto with the optional sunroof.

The X-Line’s interior benefits from a new 8-inch touch screen, fitted with a reverse camera and includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for seamless integration with your smartphone. Interior upholstery also now features a two-tone colour combination in this spruced-up Kia Picanto.

Kia Picanto engine specs

Two engines are available across the Picanto range, a 1.0 three-cylinder as well as a 1.2 four-cylinder. The X-Line is only available with the latter, producing 61 kW and 122 Nm. You have the option of a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic gearbox. We drove the manual variant, and although it requires work to awaken the little ponies when driving in stop/go city environments, once you put Kia on the highway it keeps up with traffic with minimal effort. It’s surprisingly stable too. An average fuel consumption figure of 5l/100km is what the Koreans promise from this 1.2-litre engine, as well as a range of 700km.

The Kia Picanto comes with a 5-year unlimited mileage warranty, meaning you can cover as much land in Mzansi as you heart desires within the 5 year period, knowing you’ll be covered in the event of a defect or major flaw in the vehicle. The Koreans sure do have confidence in their product.

Kia Picanto pricing:

Picanto 1.2 Manual X-LineR237 995
Picanto 1.2 Automatic X-LineR251 995