New Kia Stonic receives significant updates to tech, mechanicals

Kia is giving its Stonic crossover a mid-cycle refresh that will usher in some new technology along with the introduction of a mild-hybrid option. 

Though some outlets are calling this a facelift, exterior elements are largely left untouched, with the exception of the headlights (now updated to LED) and a new set of 16-inch alloy wheels. Paint finish also receives two new solid color additions in the guise of Storm Grey and Azure Blue, bringing the color palette to nine paint finish options in all.

There’s also a new Zest Yellow two-tone paint finish option for the roof, so buyers can now choose from 20 two-tone choices in all.

Inside, the infotainment screen gets enlarged to eight inches, along with a 4.2-inch instrument panel display that comes with better graphics than the outgoing model. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity is now available, along with new features such as traffic, weather updates, parking locations, fuel price info, and more. The updated UVO Connect infotainment system also accommodates voice recognition.

New interior customization options are also available for the interior, with new blue and yellow color packs to bring the total choice to four.

The new mild-hybrid powertrain is arguably the most significant upgrade, pairing the standard 1.0-liter Smartstream T-GDi turbocharged gasoline engine with a 48V electric motor and producing two outputs: 99hp and 118hp. Torque remains the same for either at 200Nm.

Dubbed the EcoDynamics+ powertrain, the new mild-hybrid comes with a gearbox choice of either 7-speed dual-clutch automatic or six-speed intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT), the latter now featuring Kia’s nifty ‘clutch-by-wire' equipment.

Other engine options include a standalone 98-hp 1.0-liter Smartstream and a 1.2-liter naturally-aspirated 4-cylinder with Dual Port Injection and 82hp of power. Both are mated to either a 6-speed manual or 7-speed dual clutch.

Safety is enhanced with the introduction of a host of driver assistance systems including Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) with pedestrian, vehicle and newly introduced cyclist recognition, Blind-Spot Collision Warning (BCW) and Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA), Intelligent Speed Limit Assist (ISLA), Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS), Lane Following Assist (LFA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW), and Smart Cruise Control (SCC).

The 2021 Kia Stonic starts its global trek in Europe by the end of this year, with other markets to follow.

Kia PH teased that it will unveil a new vehicle by the end of the year, and all signs point to it being the Kia Stonic. Whether it’s the 2021 or 2020 version is anyone’s guess at this point.

Photo/s from Kia Motors

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