2024 Kia Picanto Review GT Line Manual – Design, Safety, Pricing & Other Features

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2024 Kia Picanto Review

If you are feeling the cost of Living Sting, then there’s a good chance you’ve rolled back your ambitions for your next brand new car.

Maybe you’ve looked at some of Australia’s most affordable options and this little car is one of them which is new Kia Picanto.

Kia Picanto Pricing

It’s one of the few cars left under $20,000 and it’s one of the few cars left where you can get it with a manual transmission.

But being cheap is one thing and being good value is quite another.

So what does the 2024 Kia Picanto so have to offer? Let’s talk a little more about that price tag because there are now only a handful of vehicles on sale in Australia, which can be had brand new for under $20,000 and this is one of them.

The Picanto starts from a bargain 17,890 before on roads for the base manual sport. But the GT line is nearly two grand pricier at 19,690.

The automatic transmission option costs a further $1,600. The secondhand car prices was still very inflated. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

So the idea of buying a small car like this brand new with a seven year warranty is more appealing than ever. But considering it’s small size, the Picanto has always packed great value.

Features In Kia Picanto

New for this year is a sporty exterior redesign, standard synthetic leather trims for the wheel and shifter.

The analog dials have been dumped in favor of a digital instrument cluster, electric folding wing mirrors, and a surprisingly thorough array of active safety items, which we’ll talk a little bit more about later.

Meanwhile, splashing a little extra for this GT line version nets you a flat bottom steering wheel USBC ports in the cabin 16 inch Alloy wheels with new designs and an even more aggressive body kit.

The PICANTO also has the advantage of being the only survivor in this small car segment. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

It has outlived most of its rivals with only the outgoing MG three really competing on price and even then a new generation MG three is due shortly, but it’s set to be more expensive. Soon The Picanto may be the only city car left in Australia.

There are a variety of factors for why city cars like this are going out of fashion these days.

Buyers orient towards larger vehicles and small cars like this are increasingly difficult to comply to the coveted maximum five and cap stars.

But I think it’s a shame because this segment is really starting to shine internationally with some really cool designs overseas cars like the Nissans Secure, Honda N one and Hyundai Casper and a long list of others are so fetching and the K Picanto is another example of a cool looking piece of kit.

Kia Picanto Design

Particularly in this GT line form The new Picanto has adopted more of the science fictiony sort of design language from the rest of Kia’s increasingly electric range.

You’ve got aggressive light fittings, you’ve got cool little wheel designs and you’ve got overall a more squared off kind of vibe, but less has changed when it comes to the interior. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

It is a little disappointing to see how little has changed in this cabin. For the MI 24 upgrade, I do like the flat bottom steering wheel that’s specific to the GT line.

I don’t mind the little digital dash cluster in here. And the multimedia touchscreen is a great example of like headline tech In a really affordable small car like this, you also get shortcut buttons for everything on the steering wheel and on that multimedia unit itself, which is rare to see these days and I really appreciate it is just a little bit of a shame that there’s not more of the more up-to-date hardware that you get across the rest of Kia’s range like in the new Sportage or it’s new EVs.

Another drawback is the abundance of hard plastics in here, like Kia’s of old, there’s hard plastics across the top of the dash.

There’s hard plastics even in this elbow rest, even though it has like a synthetic leather finish over the top of it, there’s no padding.

It’s just a hard plastic So you do get a fatigue when you drive this car on longer trips and your elbow just sits on like a hard surface.

Interior View Of Kia Picanto

It’s a bit of a shame, but there are other areas where the practicality is really well served. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

You get huge bottle holders in the doors, and a further too with nifty little flip out finishes for console area down.

So you can actually store quite large objects in there, which is a nice touch or you can flip out the little cup holders and put your cup in there.

There’s also a little space for a small cup under the handbrake, which is useful to have better than it just being covered over with plastic I suppose, and a cute little tiny little armrest console box there as well.

Second Row Seat

Back seat of the Picanto I bet you were thinking it would be worse than it actually is. This is behind driving position If you are 182 centimeters tall or below then that you have enough room for knees.

But it is nice that there’s soft claddings on the backs of these front seats, so if your knees were hard up against it, at least it won’t be uncomfortable.

Also got a notable amount of headroom That’s really nice to see and these nice soft seat claddings continue as well. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

One thing that doesn’t continue well key is drop the pretense with the soft leather esque finishes in the doors.

It’s just hard plastic back here and there’s also no bottle holders to speak of at all. There’s not really any storage.

There’s a pocket on the back of the passenger seat, but that’s it really. There’s not a dropdown armrest or anything like that in the back of this one.

There’s A USB-C port, just a single one, but no adjustable air vents.

Boot Space

Boot space is pretty tiny at 255 liters and this may rule the Picanto out for some family buyers.

Somehow there’s still enough room under the floor for a space saver spare wheel though


Under the bonnet There is another area where the Picanto could use a little bit of innovation. It’s got the same carry over 1.2 liter four cylinder engine as before.

The front wheels are driven via either a four speed automatic or in this case a five speed manual. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

It’s a shame that the more modern three cylinder turbo from the previous GT variant is seemingly not making a comeback this time around.

Kia Picanto Road Experience

So it’s a cheap and cheerful little car, but is it a cheap and cheerful drive experience? Well, it’s a little old world in a lot of ways because you’ve got a kind of tiny little engine and you’ve got a very kinda rudimentary manual transmission in here, so you do really need to drive this car.

There’s a sort of a bit going on when it comes to concentrating. It’s not today’s modern automatics, but I do like that it’s a manual because firstly it, it keeps the skill of driving one alive.

And secondly, you can really make the most of this little car because the four speed automatic transmission, which is the only other option, well, it isn’t particularly good.

Yes, it’s a lot easier to drive, but I find this car’s much more engaging when you’re changing gears yourself. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

The Picanto is actually quite a bit of fun in this form. Yes, it’s not particularly fast and yes, this manual transmission isn’t the best on the market because the thing is usually these days when you drive a manual, it ends up being a performance manual that’s like nicely damped and really clicky and a lot of slaughter’s gone into the ratios.

But this one is just straight up rudimentary. It’s very mechanical and again requires that concentration to drive. It’s very engaging.

Now, there are other areas worth thinking about when it comes to the Picanto.

Number one is this GT line in particular rides pretty firm. It’s got big wheels and the suspension is is quite stiff and it doesn’t travel much and this cast quite light.

So it’s got a firm kind of bouncy nature, but also because it is so firm, it’s quite noisy on Corsa chip surfaces and up at freeway speeds as well.

So you do end up with a car that’s quite true to its nature. It’s a car that’s best placed around city streets and not really up at those higher speeds.

It’s not to say it can’t go on freeways, it’s just it’s much better suited to around town. The steering’s also quite nice, it’s quite firm.

It lets you feel this car quite a bit in the corners, so it’s not a kind of lifeless over assisted steering feel that some Korean cars have these days.

And that’s maybe one of the good things about having a car, which is so simple. It is quite a joy to drive. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

And while we’re on the topic of it being so well suited to driving around town, it is an absolute joy to park.

It’s an absolute joy to dirt around city streets in because it doesn’t feel like a lot of cars feel these days big and heavy and overburdened.

So who will the Picanto suit? Well, I think it’ll suit quite a few people who live in cities because it is such a little car, easy to live with, easy to drive, but also I think it might suit some people who actually still enjoy the art of driving, who still maybe wanna learn how to drive a manual or they know how to drive a manual and they can’t find a car on the market right now that kind of does what this car does and forces you to think about driving.

I think there’s really something that this car offers that so few other cars on the market offer right now.

So yes, Picanto, I think it’s fun to drive. I think it’s a unique little offering and I think while it’s a little old school that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Safety Feature In Kia Picanto

The other thing that’s impressed me quite a bit about little Picanto here is despite the fact that it’s got all of the safety systems like way more safety systems than you’d expect, But they’re also not too invasive.

Like normally a lot of Korean cars have all these great safety systems, but they’re a little bit too much, especially things like lane keep assist, but in the Picanto not so much. 2024 Kia Picanto Review

It’s pretty straightforward to drive and it doesn’t have safety systems which really interfere with that drive experience Constantly.

The current gen Picanto doesn’t have an end cap safety rating, and on the face of it, it would be pretty tough for it to get the full five stars under the current regime.


Now, like with all Kias, the ownership promise is a really big deal. It’s a big part of the value offering because you get seven years of warranty on a car that costs less than 20 grand.

But you also get seven years of roadside assist and a seven year cap price service program. But what I will say is it’s not as cheap as you might expect.

For example, it’s not as cheap as a lot of Toyotas, so that’s worth factoring in when you’re doing your sums.

Final Word

Australians are buying bigger and bigger cars when really we should be moving in the other direction and Kia should be applauded for remaining in this small city car segment and showing people what value is on offer here.

While there ultimately are only a handful of changes this time around and the Picanto is creeping up in price from where it was before, I still think this little city car is worth a look for those whose lifestyle it will suit.

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