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New Kia Picanto facelift is still one of the cheapest cars on sale

The facelifted Kia Picanto city car has arrived and starts at £15,595

While many manufacturers are looking to pull out of the segments, Kia has upgraded its little Picanto city car for 2024 with a new exterior look and wider range of equipment as standard. 

Choices for the pre-facelift Kia Picanto dwindled down to just the ‘2’ trim, but with this facelift there’s the ‘2’ as the entry-level version, followed by the ‘GT-Line’, then the ‘3’ and finally the range-topping ‘GT-Line S’. Kia won’t revive the basic ‘1’ trim level or the off-road influenced ‘X-Line S’ with the new car. 

Prices kicks off at £15,595 for the Picanto in ‘2’ trim and for that you get automatic headlights, silver window trim, rain-sensing wipers and 14-inch alloy wheels. Inside there’s a faux leather steering wheel with black cloth seats, air-conditioning, USB-A and USB-C ports, rear parking sensors and a reversing camera, plus a range of safety kit including forward collision avoidance, lane keep assist, hill start assist and cruise control.

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The eight-inch central touchscreen used to only be offered on the ‘3’ trim level, but now it comes as standard on every Picanto - replacing the smaller seven-inch unit. There’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity plus a 4.2-inch driver’s display. 

All trim levels can be had in ‘Blaze Red’ as standard or with premium paints ‘Clear White’ and ‘Midnight Black’ for an additional £575. ‘2’ and ‘3’ variants are offered in a new ‘Smokey Blue’ colour, while ‘GT-Line’ and ‘GT-Line S’ variants are available in ‘Azure Blue’, ‘Astro Grey’ and ‘Adventurous Green’.

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The GT-Line comes next, starting at £16,745. For the extra money you get 16-inch alloy wheels with ‘GT-Line’ exterior styling, a gloss black radiator grille, LED lights front and rear, tinted windows, ‘GT-Line’ interior design with metal pedals, faux grey leather upholstery and a USB-A charging port for rear passengers. 

The ‘3’ trim level is priced from £17,545 and adds a different design of 16-inch alloys, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, automatic air-conditioning, start/stop button and wireless smartphone charger.

GT-Line S is the most expensive Picanto, starting at £18,445. It has the GT-Line exterior and interior styling, a sunroof, ambient lighting, and uprated forward collision avoidance assist which includes pedestrian, cyclist, junction turning.

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The ‘2’, ‘GT-Line’ and the ‘3’ all come with a 1.0-litre petrol three-cylinder petrol engine producing 62bhp with either a five-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic which costs an extra £700. 

The GT-Line S gets the more powerful 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with 77bhp in five-speed manual or five-speed automatic guise, with the auto costing £700 more. Kia claims the engines have been tweaked with new intake valve timing and improved cooling for better efficiency and economy compared to the old Picanto.

Auto Express was invited for an exclusive preview of the 2024 Picanto and its striking new exterior inspired by Kia’s flagship EV9 SUV. This includes the same front and rear-light signature plus a squarer look overall.The new Picanto gets a full-width light bar at the front and the rear, but it’s unique to GT-Line trim; lesser models have black trim. Sporty design cues on the old car, such as the eye-catching pops of red, are replaced with more upmarket black trim pieces.

Kia’s 2024 Picanto shares its dimensions with the outgoing model, given that this is little more than a cosmetic upgrade, although its new look gives the illusion of a larger vehicle with greater road presence. When asked, Kia’s product expert Andrea De Arcangelis said this was a concerted effort by the brand to attract buyers who would have considered the larger, recently discontinued Kia Rio supermini. It’s also a technique that’s already been used elsewhere in the city car segment, including on cars such as Toyota’s Aygo X.

The updated Picanto is on sale now with first deliveries of Kia’s city car expected from July. 

Do you like the look of the updated Kia Picanto? Let us know in the comments section...

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Senior news reporter

A keen petrol-head, Alastair Crooks has a degree in journalism and worked as a car salesman for a variety of manufacturers before joining Auto Express in Spring 2019 as a Content Editor. Now, as our senior news reporter, his daily duties involve tracking down the latest news and writing reviews.

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