It’s no secret that we at TG Malaysia love a good supermini, especially one that’s as good-looking and as richly endowed as the current generation Kia Picanto.
But, until fairly recently, fans have had to settle for the Picanto in its EX base model form. Those yearning for more had to wait a while before the premium-spec GT Line variant pictured here finally went on sale. Surely, for some, it was worth the wait.
Having spent close to a week piloting it recently, there’s indeed much to love with this premium-spec offering, and we’re talking beyond what’s visible too – more on that later. What’s certain is that this is one city car for all to savour.
In GT Line form, the Picanto sees its stance enhanced thanks to a sharper-looking aero kit, snazzier and larger 16-inch alloy wheels, a sportier grille and, in our tester’s case, the striking and tasty red accents. In terms of styling, this supermini has nailed it.
The story gets better as we got into the cabin. For starters, there’s now plush leather seat covers to bask in. Drivers, on the other hand, will be chuffed with the sportier look of the flat-bottomed steering wheel, as well as the instrument dial’s posh chrome surrounds.
Look closer and you’ll see that the steering now sports an extra set of buttons on the right, signalling the presence of cruise control. In the centre dash, there are neat automatic air-cond controls now too – one of several exclusive treats for the GT Line.
Everything else remains similar to what we’ve already seen in the base EX model, which isn’t bad. Said base model was already well equipped to begin with, but the GT Line takes things up a notch to say the least.
On the move, things aren’t different here from the EX base model again, with the 1.25-litre four-banger up front delivering enough pep to drive the front wheels. Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) levels, on the other hand, are decently low too.
Arguably, the larger wheels (GT Line rides on 16-inchers as opposed to 14-inches in the EX) and tyres combo does see the Picanto GT Line corner a lot nicer, but we reckon this is one enhancement that is negligible for most average drivers.
Whilst taking about ‘negligible’ enhancements, we’ll also argue that the fabric seats in the base EX model do feel a lot more comfortable compared to the GT Line’s slightly firmer leather ones too.
Of course, these visual and aesthetic enhancements aren’t the only noteworthy items in here. In GT Line form, the biggest and perhaps most critical addition lie in safety thanks to the addition of both forward collision warning and autonomous emergency braking, the latter working between 10 to 160kph.
Couple that on top of the anti-lock brakes (ABS), six airbags, as well as both traction and stability control suites (TCS and ESC) that’s already standard across the board, it’s plain to see that the Picanto GT Line is significantly safer over its EX base model twin.
With said enhanced safety features, along with the other visual and aesthetic enhancements highlighted, they have perhaps justified the GT Line’s RM10,000 premium over its base model twin. In truth, that’s really up to you to decide.
Even in its base EX form, you’re already getting a lot of bang with every Ringgit the Picanto commands. However, if you don’t mind the added price premium, then the GT Line variant featured will only sweeten the affair further.
So, are you willing to meet the RM59,888 starting price this premium-spec supermini commands? Well, given just how much posher and safer it is in GT Line form, it’s definitely high on our recommendations list…
|Sportier looks, plusher cabin and slightly more tech||The EX base model is both cheaper and arguably feels just as good|