Kia Seltos GTX+ diesel AT: Driving impressions after 7000 km

Fuel efficiency is 16.1 km/l according to MID. However, when driven in Eco mode, we can extract 18 - 19 km/l.

BHPian barefeetdriver recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

It's been about 9 months since mighty Kia decided to deliver our Seltos. After several delays attributed to the year 2020 and also due to our initial choice of colour which was Orange we finally got hold of the vehicle at the end of January this year. So far completed 2 free services at 1000 km and 5000 km. City-Highway split is about 30-70 with city commutes mostly solo and highways with 2-3-4 passengers.


  • Harsh ride quality. Everything on the road is felt at all speeds. Even after 7000 km I still get stunned by the jarring creaking noises that are felt in the cabin when driven over unavoidable potholes. During the initial 500kms even maintaining an 80 km/hr speed led to constant undulations. I believe the car has settled down now. Or I've gotten used to it. I don't know. Tyre pressure has always been within the recommended 34-36.
  • Lack of backlighting of power window switches, buttons etc. This one is a real peeve. Even now I fumble around at night trying to roll down a particular window or unlock the vehicle. It's unbelievable. One time at night we kept the cabin light ON for an entire 40 km trip.
  • The position of the horn. The horn button is small, circular and hard to press. You have to take your fingers off the wheel to reach it. Perhaps it's a design to make people honk less. Or maybe some form of cost-cutting. I don't know. But I've gotten used to it and am back to honking the way I've always honked.
  • Facedown spare tyre. There's no way to reach the spare tyre's nozzle without extracting the tyre out of the car. And it requires a lot of effort to do this. Clearing out the boot, raising the flap, unscrewing that bolt and powerlifting the tyre - all at a crowded petrol bunk - and doing it all in reverse again. This has made regular air checks for the spare almost impossible. And no, the awesome TPMS system doesn't work for the spare wheel.
  • Hard steering in sport mode. This one was unexpected. Was hoping to zip (or rather zoom, thanks xuv700) around using the sport mode. While the engine response is good it makes the steering quite hard to steer. As someone had mentioned earlier in the Seltos thread, it makes your arms ache. It's a mini workout for sure. Maybe that's a sign that I need to work out.
  • Drive mode dial. Have stopped using drive modes entirely due to above mentioned hard steering, so this is not an issue anymore. But for some reason, the drive mode selector always goes first to the snow/sand option before going to the sport/eco/normal category. It's a minor annoyance, but it's there. Eco mode is good though. Makes everything smooth and relaxed. But I don't trust it on highways (and even within the city) where quick overtaking/manoeuvring is required and the Eco's mode's laggy nature just makes everything "doubtful".
  • Steering size. A lot has been said about flat bottomed steering. It looks amazing for sure. However, I think the diameter is smaller than your regular Maruti steerings. This I believe puts more pressure on your shoulders. Just my opinion.


360 View. I forgive Kia and Seltos for all their sins for this one feature. Words won't describe the potency of the surround view system. Parallel parking? Check. Tight apartment parking? Check. Waddling through narrow streets? Check. It's literally your own eye in the sky. The only issue is the 4 cameras need to be clean. Otherwise, it gets blurry. So before every trip, I try to walk around and wipe the lenses with my fingers.

As per expectation:

  • Torque converter gearbox is convenient. Turbo lag is evident at 20-30 speeds. But once you are above 30-35 the car becomes very responsive, but in city traffic, you tend to oscillate around 20-40 a lot and hence there's that slower mode and faster mode. But I've gotten used to it.
  • Fuel efficiency is 16.1 km/l according to MID. But from my calculations it's 14ish. When driven in Eco mode with max revs of 2000-2200 rpm it is very easy to extract 18-19 km/l. It's definitely boring though.
  • Cooled seats. No more back sweats. Enough said.
  • TPMS. Again a very useful feature.
  • Android Auto. Hit or a miss. Quite hard to connect. But I've gotten better at it these days. There's a delicate dance of Bluetooth on, plug in the USB cord, Bluetooth off, then Android Auto hijacks the phone and prime music app won't open and so on and so forth. Google Maps is good. Inbuilt Kia Maps leads you down rabbit holes. Better not listen to her.

Other vehicles considered:

  1. Tata Harrier Deisel Automatic: Let's just say the Harrier is an emotion. Just wowed by its shape. Took a test drive and found everything good. But it was way dearer and bigger and didn't/doesn't come with front sensors or 360 views. Parking and manoeuvring would be an issue.
  2. Ford Ecosport Petrol Automatic: Good but, during the test drive could not see the bonnet from any seating position. Rear seats were definitely smaller, especially after experiencing the Harrier just hours ago.
  3. Toyota Yaris Petrol CVT: Probably the 2nd best car that we checked on. The CVT + 1.5 NA petrol is sublime. Was super responsive within the city, very quiet ride and no bumps filtered into the cabin. The biggest deal-breaker was the lack of rear-seat headspace. At 5'9 was scared of hitting the roof.

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