We at Philkotse.com can’t stress how much the sub-compact SUV market has swept the landscape of Philippine motoring.
Almost every Car Brand in the Philippines have their own version of a small crossover from budget fares such as the Chinese Foton Gratour IM6 to the more premium and luxury Audi Q2. Everyone wants in on one of the hottest segments of the car market.
The sub-compact SUV market has swept the landscape of Philippine motoring
Kia Philippines can probably be noted as one of the pioneers in this segment. In the late 2010s, they introduced one of the quirkiest cars to every ply our local roads, the Kia Soul. The Soul had the formula pat-down. Not quite an SUV and definitely not your regular, low-slung sedan.
The Philippine market at the time was not ready to embrace such a concept, many were looking at either PPVs or Pickup-Truck based SUVs such as the Fortuner, Montero Sport or Everest and even Compact SUVs like the RAV4 and CRV were more the norm at the time.
It took larger companies such as Toyota with the Avanza for Filipinos to finally taste what it is like to drive a car that has a slightly raised ride-height to appreciate sub-compact crossovers.
Alas, The Kia Soul either came too soon on our shores, or its previous distributors themselves were unsure on how to market the little cross-over.
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Kia Philippines can probably be noted as one of the pioneers in this segment
Enter the Ayala Group of Companies. In late 2018 they acquired exclusive rights from Columbian Autocar to distribute and market Kia cars in the Philippines. They vowed to improve the brand’s marketing and streamline their line-up to be more appropriate for the Philippine market and for Filipinos.
Earlier this year they released the Kia Soluto a small sub-compact sedan that undercuts all its rivals in terms of price and standard equipment. The release of the Kia Stinger a 4-door sports sedan that can give the Germans a good run for their money.
Now they are at the precipice of releasing a potential game-changer in their hands, the Kia Seltos Sub-compact crossover.
Kia Philipines are at the precipice of releasing a potential game-changer
The Kia Soul is no more, as Kia Philippines has deemed it unfit for Filipino’s tastes.
You can’t blame them as 2 generations of the Kia Soul has been released along with diesel, of which Filipinos have been clamoring for a long time for, but it just didn’t sell that well to warrant the release of the funky 3rd generation. They do have potentially a worthy replacement for it with the Kia Seltos.
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Kia Philippines has a more than worthy replacement for the Kia Soul
According to the latest car news, Kia Seltos' engine version being released here is the 2-liter Atkinson Cycle Naturally Aspirated Gasoline variant that makes about 149hp and 180Nm of torque.
If those figures sound familiar, it’s because the engine is the same one is found in Kia’s sister company’s own Sub-Compact Crossover, Kona, which is set to hold the fort when it comes to sales against the potential new-comer.
The Hyundai Kona in itself is doing quite well for itself and is one of Hyundai Philippines’ best selling vehicles.
Other cars in the same category are the quirky Nissan Juke, versatile Honda HRV, all-wheel-drive Subaru XV, turbocharged Chevrolet Trax, aging Ford Ecosport and fun to drive CX-3.
The 2 liter NA engine in the Seltos makes 149hp and 180Nm of torque
Pricing for the Kia Seltos has not been officially released yet but sources from within Kia Philippines have stated that it can range from Php 1.1 Million to Php 1.4 Million. Keep your eyes glued to the Kia Philippines price list to get the latest pricing updates of all Kia models.