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Following the release of two tantilising sketches late last year, Kia has revealed the first official images of the 2011 Kia Picanto ahead of its world premiere at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show in March.

Kia Australia maintains there are “no immediate plans” to introduce the all-new Picanto to its local showrooms, but it is far from closing the door on the idea.

With the new larger and better-equipped Kia Rio expected to arrive in the third quarter of this year, Kia Australia will be desperate to replace it with an entry-level vehicle to take on the likes of the Holden Barina Spark, Suzuki Alto and Nissan Micra in the rapidly expanding sub-light category.

The previous generation Picanto – known for its timid, self-conscious appearance – was never sold in Australia.

The images of the new vehicle reveal a much bolder and more self-assured small car.

Kia says it has been completely re-engineered and redesigned, and sports a longer wheelbase and overall length.

The new Picanto will be offered around the world as a five-door hatch (like the current model), and European markets will also receive a sportier three-door variant.

Kia is promising four all-new powertrains for the Picanto, including 1.0- and 1.2-litre petrol engines with “class leading CO2 emission levels”. LPG bi-fuel and flex fuel variants will also be available depending on the market.

Kia will reveal more specifications of the all-new 2011 Kia Picanto at Geneva in around two month’s time.

  • G

    Front looks great. Rear not so much, a bit like a Rondo. Still better than the similar offerings around here.

  • http://CarAdvice The Salesman

    Picanto has been on and off the cards for Australia for many years.

  • Golfschwein

    Well, there you go. That’s how you do a mature and good looking light car that doesn’t ask for an apology, and doesn’t need to. Quite unlike the Barina Spark.

  • Andrew M

    Is this the same as the i20??

    If so, yet another vehicle they have out styled Hyundai with.

    Kia seems to be allowed to pen a bit of style and character into their vehicles, hyundai just seems to be closely following the Toyota business structure, blandness and all

    • nickdl

      I think it’s based on the i10; the new Rio will be the same as the i20. So it definitely out-styles the i10, the blandest of the Hyundai small cars. And, like all Kias, the Picanto will probably be a better car all round.

    • Shak

      Maybe thats what Hyundai/KIA are aiming for. Hyundai now have much more market presence, so why not make them the mass market brand. Give KIA a bit more room to appeal to those who want a bit more personality and added quirk from their cars.

  • Andrew of Newcastle

    Just in case someone from Kia Australia is reading this, if the Picanto does come to Australia, don’t forget a commercial version with no back seats, but a flat floor instead. You will corner the small delivery van market overnight. By the way the symmetry of this design is something the Barina Spark can only dream of!

    • JHP

      There won’t be any commercial version of kia picanto, but they are currently developing new box car called Kia Q, which is like nissan cube, with slightly better looking, that car will be available in both passenger and commercial version, but i doubt kia q will make it to Australia, as usual… :[

  • Don

    Seems to be a decent car,they better bring to Oz. It looks somewhat like a Toyota Aygo from the front.

    • jj

      thats exactly what i thought… its not a rebadged aygo is it?

      isnt the aygo a rebadged something else anyway?

      • Baddass

        The Aygo shares it’s platform with the Citroen C1 and Peugeot 107.

  • likeseriously

    definitely looks like the i10 with the hex grill,

    maybe aussie wont have the i10 hex grill?

    and let kia sell this instead?

    can’t see kia’s tiger nose anywhere…only hyundai’s hex grill…

  • http://www.oldcarsforsales.com Old cars

    The front looks a bit ricey and the rear is quite messy, not really good compared to other modern Kias.