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Published on: Jan. 13, 2022, 2:01 p.m.
Kia Motors' dream run continues
  • Brar and Park: witnessing something exciting

By S.M. Boothem

For Kia Motors, it’s been a dream run in India. In the short span of just over two years of operations with three products, the Seltos, the Carnival and the Sonet, it sold more than 3,50,000 units and is set to cross 4,00,000 shortly. The Seltos and the Sonet are the major contributors to these figures. The company recently unveiled its fourth product, the Carens, an MPV made in India for Indian and global customers. Kia wants to increase its market share in the three-row SUV segment with the Carens. Currently, Hyundai Alcazar, Mahindra XUV700, Tata Safari and MG Hector Plus offer similar products.

“Earlier this year, Kia embarked on a journey of total transformation for the future and we have been updating all areas of Kia, including our corporate name, logo and design identity, to name a few. Our global vision is to make sustainable mobility solutions with 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030. The new Carens offers the practicality of an MPV along with the inspiration of an SUV.  With its bold design, high-tech features, and industry-leading safety systems, the Carens is set to create a benchmark for family vehicles,” said Ho Sung Song, President and CEO, Kia Corporation in his video speech from Korea.

The company is working on a number of issues, including solar power generation, 11 electric vehicles (EVs) in global markets by 2026 and completing its EV line-up by 2045. It has also joined hands with NGOs on the recycling process across global plants.

“We have gathered here to witness something exciting. A successful run in just over two years of launch in the Indian market and we received tremendous love. Kia is part of 3.5 lakh families. Keeping in mind Indian families, we did extensive research on a premium and comfortable three-row seat car to take care of the Indian urban lifestyle. The SUV segment contributes 36 per cent. We are confident that we have another game-changer product in the Carens,” said Tae-Jin Park, MD and CEO, Kia India. “I believe this is the most exciting insight we tried to unlock while developing the Carens. It’s safe, and packs everything a modern Indian family would want in their vehicle,” added Park. 

 The Kia Carens comes with both petrol and diesel powertrains combined with multiple transmission options, including the 7DCT and 6AT.  The Carens will be available in India starting from the first quarter of 2022 and includes three colours: Imperial Blue, Moss Brown and Sparkling Silver. “It is a proud moment for us at Kia as we launch our fourth product in the Indian market. We truly feel that Kia brought a revolution in family mobility. We have many milestones with Seltos, Sonet and Carnival driving our growth so far. The Carens will not only increase our market share but also our brand image,” said Hardeep Singh Brar, VP and Head of sales and marketing, Kia India.  

Safety features 

On the safety front, the Kia Carens offers a number of active safety features. The model comes with Hi-Secure Safety Package, a first in India. Included as standard across all trims of the Carens are six airbags, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Vehicle Stability Management (VSM), Hill-Assist Control (HAC), Downhill Brake Control (DBC), Brake Assist System (BAS), Highline TPMS and All-Wheel Disc Brakes. While the ESC protects the car from loss of traction, HAC and DBC let drivers confidently drive on uphill and downhill roads. 

To connect with the car at all times, the Carens offers the next-generation Kia Connect app, which replaces the previous UVO system. Kia Connect now hosts updated and exciting features with added safety and convenience. One of the major updates with Kia Connect is the enhancement of OTA (Over the Air) map and system updates, which is now capable of updating software without visiting the Kia workshop. The Carens comes equipped with 60+ connected car features and supports ten native languages. 

 More space for the family 

The Kia Carens’ large cabin space offers generous third-row legroom that is led by the best-in-class length wheelbase of the car. The one-touch electric tumble in the second row ensures easy ingress and egress. The second row also features recline and slide functions. In addition to the space and recline functions, the third-row seats can also be flattened in the boot to ensure maximum cargo space.   

Kia India’s products have been well accepted by Indian customers for their design, innovation and a variety of features. If priced competitively, the Carens will generate good numbers for the carmaker and the segment. 

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