The Kia brand in Thailand currently only offers the K2500 light commercial vehicle. From this week onwards, the brand is set for a restart in the Kingdom, via the introduction of the all-new Kia Carnival MPV.
Fully-imported from South Korea, the all-new Kia Carnival being offered by Yontrakit Kia Motor is available in three variants starting from THB2.045 million (approx. RM254k) for the Limited all the way to THB2.495 million (approx. RM310k) to the range-topping Carnival SXL.
Only one powertrain will be on offer for all three variants- the Smartstream 2.2-litre CRDi turbodiesel engine paired to an 8-speed automatic gearbox. Power outputs are 202 hp and 440 Nm of torque, with the engine compatible with Euro 5 emission standards.
Yontrakit Motor will only offer the mid-range EX and SXL variants on a regular basis. Standard features include four rows of seating to make it a total of 11 seats, powered sliding doors, power-adjustable front seats with driver memory and ventilation feature, a dial-type shift-by-wire system, manual sunshades for the rear side windows, 3-zone automatic air conditioning with ioniser, wireless smartphone charger, six USB charging ports including two for the third-row passengers, surround-view parking camera system and seven airbags.
Setting up or collapsing the fourth row of seats is incredibly convenient, where the entire seatback and bench folds downwards and sinks flat into the floor. However, usage of the fourth row takes up all the available luggage space thus it is only useful for ferrying occupants as a shuttle and not for holiday trips.
The range-toppings Carnival SXL adds all the gadgets such as a 12.3-inch digital cluster gauge and infotainment display for a dual-screen setup, rain-sensing wipers and the Kia Highway Driving Assist (HDA) advanced driver assistance suite such as adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, Lane Following Assist and the Safe Exit Assist that warns rear passengers of the presence of vehicles behind.
As for the newly introduced Kia Carnival 2.2 Limited variant, it features less powered conveniences, such as the lack of remote opening of the tailgate and sliding doors, fitment of a smaller 8-inch infotainment system and a reverse camera.
The all-new Kia Carnival is set to be a more premium offering in the MPV segment compared to larger affiliate Hyundai, which launched the futuristic-looking Staria in July. Both models are however still out of sight of Toyota Alphard and Vellfire buyers, as the premium Japanese MPVs only starts their pricing from THB3.889 million (approx. RM483k).