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Old 12th September 2020, 21:02   #46
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

So I visited Allied Motors Sohna road showroom today in Gurgaon. Inspite of covid, the number of people inside the showroom indicated the strong interest the new Kia has generated.

We didn't go inside the showroom due to safety concerns. But since demo cars were parked outside, we had ample time with the car. All cars were GT line and small test drives were being given inside the mall complex only.

SIL wants to purchase one and she was absolutely sold on Sonet the moment she saw it. Infact she has stretched her budget to get a Sonet. We didn't test drive the car but just had a peek in the car by opening the doors, sitting on driver seat etc. Will schedule test drive later where we can experience the car safely.

The first impression of the car is simply wow. Bold front, swat stance, sunroof, a big Touchscreen and the interiors are more than enough to sway folks who are used to Marutis. We saw 3 colors of car - white, intense red and grey. Surprisingly, the white color with those red strips of GT line looks majestic on Sonet.

IMT is generating a lot of interest for Kia even though Hyundai was first to introduce it. It's quite clear that the brand pull of Kia overshadows Hyundai in the current market.

For common layman on the street like my SIL, there is no way that products like Brezza even get into consideration if they have seen Sonet. Such is the pull of a well designed car.

This car has an aspirational value to it and I see Sonet becoming numero uno in the segment even if Kia stretches the prize envelope a little bit more. Venue will be cannibalised and the likes of Brezza/Urban Cruiser will be hit harder than before in the absence of a diesel engine. Product on product, Sonet absolutely annihilates Brezza particularly in the automatic avatar.

Within Kia's stable, Sonet is a success waiting to happen and I will not be surprised if it overshadows Seltos' success in the medium run. Kia has a winner and the case study material on Kia's success in India has got a new entrant.

Last edited by headbanger : 12th September 2020 at 21:06.
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Old 12th September 2020, 21:08   #47
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

I have a slightly different opinion from people claiming that sonet will set the charts on fire just like the seltos. Seltos and creta have almost a monopoly in >4m segment as there are no competent alternatives.

While the sub 4 meter segment already has many strong contenders. Usp of sonet is its long feature list but most of the features will be reserved for the top variant.

So the middle and lower variants of the sonet would most probably have similar features viz a viz competition and thats when its tight cabin space will be a downer. People comparing middle variants of sonet with nexon and brezza wont find sonet any better.
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Old 12th September 2020, 21:37   #48
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Originally Posted by invidious View Post
I understand the need to soup the car with features to attract a youngish clientele for the Sonet. But it seems to be trying too hard. From the weird air vents to the striped floor mats and mood lamps titled "Party Time!" and "Hey!yo!
An interesting snippet I picked up from one of the reviews (zigwheels, I think)... The Sonet has nothing to do with Shakespearean poetry. Itís abbreviation of the word ĎSocial NetworkĎ
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Old 12th September 2020, 21:41   #49
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

I visited the Kia showroom and checked out Sonet today.
From the pics and videos I didn't like the AC vents, however in person it looked good. Interiors looked upmarket and quality looked good. Bright red color looked very good on it.

Did a test drive of the IMT variant, loved the IMT gearbox! It was such an ease in traffic conditions while keeping almost all the fun of manual gearbox. It felt planted on my short spirited drive, steering felt good in hands too.

One main sore point, it is strictly a 4 seater. 3 below average sized adults felt cramped in the back seat. There's just no way 3 people can fit in the back seat for anything more than a short city drive.

My Punto has much more width than the Sonet!
I want to see how the new i20 looks when launched and I am sure it will be more space than this.

Overall for a small family, Sonet is an excellent car!
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Old 12th September 2020, 22:01   #50
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Is the AC the same in all the models?

If anyone has done a back to back drive of the Sonet and the Seltos, does the Sonet FEEL any smaller when driving (not parking) in the city?

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Old 12th September 2020, 22:38   #51
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review


I feel KIA is truly doing itís research well and getting to know what the Indian buyer really wants. The lineup and the multiple options of variants to choose from is one amongst many things to offer. Got an opportunity to check out the car in person, and I must say it looks much premium than any of the compact-suvís on offer.

Itís definitely a stunner.

Thanks for the enriching first observations.
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Old 13th September 2020, 00:46   #52
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

A non-teambhpian friend has booked Sonet. He already owns a kia Seltos diesel MT HTX+. He also owns a nissan micra diesel for in-city runs. He and his father both being 6 footers find low height of micra uncomfortable and tiresome.
He is waiting for official price announcement of sonet to take a decision as he doesn’t want to cross ~10L on road for his second vehicle. He may delay/skip the purchase if price isn’t suitable and mange with micra for now.
If he proceeds with sonet, he is adamant on a Manual transmission so NA petrol variants get ruled out for their low capacity and fun factor. He is fine with mid variants. Hence the choice narrows down to a base/mid variant diesel MT Sonet.
I tried to convince him for a Auto-diesel Combo as its the best in its segment. And even in the next segment I guess. But he has his reservations. He also fears, his ~55 years young and active father may not be able to adapt to an auto transmission. Yes, there are people who find MT easier.
So we had gone to check out sonet last sunday, I found the dashboard a bit higher and if the seat height is set at top most position, there isn’t much space left between head and roof for a 6 footer. Is safety compromised in such case? Experts can explain better. I would also request taller people who have checked out sonet to give their opinion. Other than that, pros and cons of the vehicle are already known. Nothing to add there.

I also suggested him to check out new creta base variants both petrol(ex) and diesel(e). Both at 9.99L ex-showroom offer very good features for a full fledged urban/pseudo SUV. I assume 1.5 NA petrol creta won’t be as sluggish as 1.2 Petrol sonnet/venue. I haven’t test driven either of the vehicles and its just my assumption based on specs.
People who have no reservations about parking space and vehicle size, should consider base variants of creta/seltos against mid variants of sonet/venue.
Kia and Hyundai have definitely spoiled the customers with nearly infinite variants in Venue, Sonet, Seltos and Creta.
I would request prospective buyers to share their experience.
OT: I would also request our fellow members to share their views on Creta/Seltos 1.5 petrol engine’s performance in relevant threads.
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Old 13th September 2020, 01:00   #53
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Well 90% of the comments in this review are criticising the space offered is for 4 adults, thatís the only drawback that will draw people to some other option. This trend was started 6 years back by Hyundai with grand i10 where it was a 4 seater with additional room for a kid. And now we see even SUV being built on the same idea.

Give the first 2 features of below 3 along with what kia has offered and any manufacturer will rule the market:

1) Proper 5 seater equivalent to space offered by Duster.
2) 360 degree camera.
3) Auto park assist (This one is being too optimistic, a feature in luxury cars only, but given the tech around with ventilated seats & imt in this segment, I think in next 4-5 years this might also be a talking point in this segment)

Above 3 covered thatís a complete package and people both from urban and rural area will love to have.
Imagine the hassle free parking plus the compact dimensions will be boon in city conditions.
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Old 13th September 2020, 12:37   #54
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Very nicely put. Thanks.
I few things for my purchase decision, if you can recollect.
1. Is the steering too light for safe driving on the mountains? How does it compare with the NEXON?
2. Does it have cornering lights?
3. Is the diesel fuel tank and piping insulated or left open?
4. Which tyres in you opinion would be best suited to SONET for driving on the mountains as well as the highway.

The other diesel AT I'm considering is the THAR. Rear seats are of not much use to me. That's why.

Thanks again
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Old 13th September 2020, 13:24   #55
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Originally Posted by TS Rawat View Post
Very nicely put. Thanks.
I few things for my purchase decision, if you can recollect.
The other diesel AT I'm considering is the THAR. Rear seats are of not much use to me. That's why.
Believe it or not, I am in the same boat. Have been seeking a replacement for my 7 year old, only 30K run, perfect condition Ecopsort (TDCI Titanium Optional) only due to the 7 year itch. Considering the Thar and Sonet Diesel ATs. I know these cars are in totally different segments - but they both offer a lot of novelty and wow factor - albeit in very different ways. The Sonet brings a compact footprint for easy daily use with a powerful Diesel AT for the occasional highway drives and trips to the hills or beaches. Plus a plethora of features seen only in Luxury Cars even a couple of years ago. The Thar on the other hand brings the anticipation of exploring off-the-beaten-track while retaining a reasonably small footprint (in terms of length, although it is enormously wide and tall) for in-city maneuvering and parking with a little more effort than the Sonet but a lot less effort than proper 4X4s like the Endeavour and Fortuner. Plus Make in India pride to see some cutting edge of engine technology and solid reliability from Mahindra. The one thing that bothers me with the Thar is whether front seat travel will be sufficient for tall drivers (The previous generation was horrible in this respect for a 6'2" tall frame like mine), and the absence of an armrest. These two things are a must for long distance driving comfort.

I know the budgets are likely to be vastly different - Have booked an HTK+ Diesel AT in the Sonet and hope that comes at 9.99 lakh ex-showroom, I believe it is great value at that price point. In case of the Thar I will have to go for LX Diesel AT hardtop and that will cost close to 15 lakhs ex-showroom, but I think it is worth paying that amount. With price announcements coming 2 weeks apart (Sep 18 and October 2), I think one can see how sheer value pans out in both these cars and then decide.

Last edited by 84.monsoon : 13th September 2020 at 13:31.
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Old 13th September 2020, 14:47   #56
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Originally Posted by 84.monsoon View Post
The one thing that bothers me with the Thar is whether front seat travel will be sufficient for tall drivers (The previous generation was horrible in this respect for a 6'2" tall frame like mine), and the absence of an armrest. These two things are a must for long distance driving comfort
Since you're a six footer, won't Sonet give you issues with headroom if you set the seat high and hence a compromise on safety too. In that respect, Thar would fare better I guess, you may want to check for yourself it's seat travel though. If the car is intended for largely city use, isn't Sonet an obvious choice. You will have to set the seat at its lower mid.

It's a hard choice to make. Sonet scores on features and a smaller foot print to boot and Thar gives you a go-anywhere option sans the features. If I were you, I would go for Thar and retain Eco Sport(if feasible) and there's a use case justification. This thought is based on the assumption that though you booked Sonet and expecting the price to be 9.99 but keeping the Thar option open and ready to shell out 15 lakhs. Selling the Eco Sport can only fetch you 5 - 5.5 lakhs I guess.

Last edited by Bibendum90949 : 13th September 2020 at 14:52.
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Old 13th September 2020, 15:53   #57
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Kia Sonet with official accessories

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Old 13th September 2020, 16:36   #58
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Quick question? Given the driving dynamics of the Sonet, for a plush ride what would be the best alternative for stock tyres Michelin, Pirelli or Yokohama? Also any recommendations for a good tyre dealer who will give good value for an exchange.

Last edited by k_gpatel : 13th September 2020 at 16:50.
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Old 13th September 2020, 17:50   #59
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Originally Posted by k_gpatel View Post
Quick question? Given the driving dynamics of the Sonet....
Based on my experience, switching from Bridgestone Ecopia to Michelin in Ignis, changed the character of the car. Much more plush and better ride comfort. Would definitely recommend Michelin.
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Old 13th September 2020, 19:02   #60
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re: Kia Sonet : Official Review

Intrestingly, in quite a few media reviews that I've witnessed over the past couple of days, the Android Auto/Apple CarPlay does not seem to occupy the entire 10.25 inch multimedia screen unlike Seltos. It's restricted to approximately 8 inches I guess and the rest of the real estate consists of OEM stuff like Compass etc. Thoughts ?
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