Kia's first subcompact SUV has just made its global debut in India. The Sonet is Kia's Trojan horse to take over the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and it's own sibling the Hyundai Venue. And like the Venue, it comes with all kinds of whiz-bang gadgetry. Let's take a look at the core features of the Sonet and get an idea of how good it is considering we had some alone time with the car before it's launched in India next month.
Also View: Kia Sonet Picture Gallery
Also Read: Kia Sonet Subcompact SUV Makes World Debut
The Sonet gets a massive screen which is the hub for controlling all the tech on the vehicle. A 10.25-inch capacitive touchscreen takes over the centre console. Mind you, this is an awesome screen which is bright, vivid and responsive while also being larger than even a screen on an iPad. It also is the hub to control the sound system which is by Bose on the top of the line trim. Some of the other features like the parking assist, the radio, Kia's UVO platform and even the navigation system are all parsed through this hub.
7 Speaker Bose Sound System
UVO Connected Car System
The Sonet is a connected smart car. It comes with an e-SIM that will ensure that it is hooked up to the interwebs allowing you to control it remotely from an app on your phone and comes with 57 connected car tech. This is what Kia calls the UVO platform. UVO can be accessed from either the app or the big display panel. It provides all kinds of telematics and even tells you if the car requires servicing. If the car is chauffeur-driven, you can set up geo-fenced blockades based on distance and time. You can also open the car remotely.
The Sonet also embraces wireless charging technology which is increasingly being used in top tier premium smartphones. It has a cubby pad below the central console which is a tad cramped. Wireless charging is convenient because it doesn't need you to carry wires, but it is also slow to charge the phones. Some phones like the Xiaomi Mi 10 and OnePlus 8 Pro now support 30-watt wireless charging, but the Sonet will only charge those phones at a snail's pace of 5-watts. It is a trade-off, but it is a feature that is well appreciated in this segment.
The Sonet adds an air purification system on the rear seat AC column. It also acts like a car freshener. Considering the times we are living in, we can't overemphasise how important a feature this is. In India, especially metro cities where the bulk of the sales will happen for the Sonet, the pollution levels are also amongst the highest levels in the world, which makes it doubly important. User interfaces wise, it is quite straightforward as it has a display which shows the air quality index.
Besides these core features, there is a lot more going on with the Sonet in terms of tech. Voice recognition being one. As of now, we haven't taken a deep dive into the car but be rest assured we will have a more detailed review of the in-car tech experience soon.