Kia Sonet Seven Seater - Should it launch in India?
Kia recently unveiled a 7-seater version of its Sonet in Indonesia and the interesting thing is that it is actually manufactured in India. Yes, the Sonet is exported from India to many markets including Indonesia and for that market a new 7-seater version has just been unveiled. The Sonet exported from India is not the same and it is above 4m actually with the Sonet sold in Indonesia measuring 4,120mm. There are no such tax laws hence there is no need to fit the Sonet under 4m like in India.
Hence, with the Sonet being longer for these markets, the 7-seater version could have been easily developed and that is why it has been done. For the Indonesian market, the Sonet 7 seater is developed with putting the 3rd row seats in the boot itself. There is no change in length from the 5-seater and there is a one touch tumble access to the third row along with a recline function for the second row too.
The third row also folds up but in place there is not boot capacity at all. There are no different features or anything to differentiate the Sonet 7-seater from the standard one. In Indonesia there is only one engine offered and while getting this version to India will not be difficult since it is made here, the cost of getting the Sonet to be above 4m and the extra seats will increase the prices and make it less attractive in value. The lack of boot space would also be a turn-off for most. However if Kia can make this work in India including the cost, then it could be a successful compact under 4m seven seater if that is indeed possible. We will have to wait and see.
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