Kia Picanto 1.1 5dr Review
Wise Pic

Story by C.K, Lim Photos by Raymond Lai
2 Jun 2010

Though it is only six years old, the Kia Picanto has already undergone not one but two nip-and-tucks. We get up close and personal with the latest model.

Flower power

The year 2004 was a year of mixed news. Back then, Singapore had just gotten itself a new Prime Minister in the form of Lee Hsien Loong, before going on to post an impressive 8.1 per cent growth in economy, marking an tremendous rebound from the year before when the deadly SARS epidemic hit Asia. The year ended on a bad note with the destructive tsunami in the Indian Ocean though.

2004 also saw the debut of the Picanto from Korean car maker Kia. Based on a shortened platform of the Hyundai Getz, this supermini was designed to be an affordable city car for those on a budget. Expectedly, its cabin was plain and plasticky, while the engine and equipment were basic. Its saving grace was that its exterior styling had a cheerful and bubbly disposition about it.

Of course, being one of the cheapest new cars at that point in time - the brigade of Chinese car makers were still largely confined to their domestic market - helped the Picanto's case, putting it at the top of the list of many would-be car owners.

Towards the end of 2007, this diminutive hatchback underwent its first facelift. Where it differed from the outgoing model was primarily at the front, where it received a pair of new swept-back headlamps and a new bumper, along with a restyled front grille and wing mirrors. Immediately, the Picanto, though still cheerful, took on a slightly more sophisticated feel - just like a teenage girl transforming into a young woman.

On the inside, the centre console was slightly redesigned, complete with new panels, while the dials in the instrument cluster had been jazzed up with a silvery-white decorative trim.

And now, in 2010, Kia has given its smallest car yet another nip-and-tuck, bringing it in line with its current design language.


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Engine Capacity 1086cc
Engine Type Inline 4
Power 64bhp @ 5500rpm
Torque 98Nm @ 2800rpm
Power to Weight 73.4 bhp per ton


Acceleration 17.7s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 146 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 17.2 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 4 -speed Auto
Drive Type FF
Steering Electric


Body Type 5 Door Hatch
(L x W x H)
(3535 x 1595 x 1480) mm
Wheelbase 2370 mm
Kerb Weight 872 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 35 L


Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs