Kia Picanto LS profile_2 Since its debut at the 81st Geneva Motor Show in 2011, the mini, sub-compact KIA Picanto has unequivocally proven that small could also be just as outstanding. With that vision having been fully cemented, the Korean manufacturer takes pride in announcing a new entry-level to the range with the Picanto LS, which is bound to spark a fire in the highly competitive A-segment of the market.

With a combination of cutting edge styling, which should make the Picanto LS looks fresh even years later, and coupled with a high quality interior; the Picanto remains the best example of how an affordable car doesn’t have to make any compromises. As the entry-level variant in the line-up, the new Picanto LS takes this ethos further to offer customers a significant value proposition without compromising on driveability.

Visually, the Picanto LS benefits from the same upgrades introduced to the Picanto range earlier this year, bar the exclusion of front daytime running lights, which have been replaced with black mouldings. Color-coded bumpers at the front and rear remains standard, as does the color-coded door handles and side mirrors. The new Picanto LS ships with 14-inch steel wheels shod with 165/60 R14 tyres and full wheel covers identical to that of the Picanto LX.

Inside, the LS shares most of the LX’s features, including air-conditioning, tilt-adjustable steering, a trip computer, height adjustable head rests, 60:40 split rear folding seats and a convenient luggage floor box. While the Picanto LS is not fitted with a standard radio, two front speakers and an Aux/USB connection is included and wired to work with an aftermarket radio unit.

The Kia Picanto LS also shares its powertrain and five-speed manual transmission with the Picanto LX, with the efficient three-cylinder, 998 cc Kappa engine producing 51 kW of power and 94 Nm of torque. The engine features DOHC, dual CVVT (continuously variable valve timing), a cast aluminium block, off-set crankshaft, maintenance-free long-life timing chain and low friction ‘beehive’ valve springs, which aids reduced tailpipe emissions and increased fuel efficiency. The car also features a Shift Indicator Light, which assists drivers in changing gears in such a way as to optimize fuel efficiency.

Safety remains uncompromised due to the greater percentage of high-strength steel used in the construction of the Picanto’s bodyshell, with greater rigidity achieved through ring-shaped reinforcing loops within the B- and C-pillars, across the floor pan and roof, and additional bracing at the front between the cowl and suspension towers. A driver’s airbag and ISOFIX child seat anchors remain standard.

Available in 10 exciting colors, the new Picanto 1.0 LS slots in-between the Picanto 1.0 LX and the range-topping 1.2 EX. At the time of publication, Naza Kia Malaysia has not revealed plans to domestically debut the new Picanto LS.

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