- Kia has not announced pricing for the 2023 Seltos. 2023 Edition starts at $22,840, plus $1,295 for delivery
- For 2024, the Kia Seltos gets a boost with its optional turbocharged engine and a makeover, inside and out.
The Kia Seltos was already one of the best small SUVs on the market. It has been on the US market for two years and has twice won the Subcompact SUV Best Buy award.
But Kia adopted a new design language and greatly improved most of its interiors at the time. So Kia unveiled an updated Seltos at this week’s Los Angeles Auto Show.
Designed for 2024, it goes beyond the typical mid-cycle production cars. Kia Seltos benefits from a fresh exterior and a thoroughly updated interior with new technology. The new X-Line trim lends it a rugged off-road look, though there are no mechanical changes to back it up.
Two engines, but you want the turbo
As before, the 2024 Seltos will be available with two engine options. As before, most buyers will likely be happier with the turbocharged option.
The base engine is still a mill 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. It sends power through a continuously variable transmission to the front wheels or all four wheels with an all-wheel drive setup.
Already the top choice, the 1.6-liter turbocharged engine has seen an upgrade for 2024. It now makes 195 horsepower. It sends power through a new 8-speed automatic transmission. We found the optional 7-speed in the 2023 Seltos a little tricky.
No one in the press has been behind the wheel yet, so we can’t promise the new gearbox is an improvement. But the fact that Kia found a reason to replace it suggests good news.
“Digital Tiger” Look outside
Seltos gets a makeover with Kia’s new “digital tiger” design language. Kia says its larger grille “emphasizes width and gives Seltos a stronger look,” and we wouldn’t dispute that. Optional ‘star map’ lighting elements in the grille and available projector headlamps help them look even brighter.
New X-Line trim adds a bronze finish to that grille and adds a roof rack, gloss black door “trim” and unique 18-inch wheels. Kia uses the “X-Line” name for off-road versions of larger SUVs like the Telluride, but there are no skid plates or traction tires for the Seltos X-Line. It’s just a skin pack.
Heavy screen (optional) cab
Inside, the 2024 Seltos gets a major makeover. Unfortunately, this is optional. You can still get the retro look with a small 4.2 inch digital display. But the optional package will amaze even more buyers.
Pick it up, and Kia’s signature dual screens — housed in a single frame, so they look like a large curved screen — take over driver’s instrument panel and infotainment screen duties. It looks great and gives the impression of a more expensive car. Each measures 10.25 inches diagonally.
The rest of the cabin is unremarkable but tastefully put together. The new Digital Key lets you ditch your physical key and use your smartphone to lock, unlock and start the vehicle.
The compact SUV competition is heating up, with the new Honda HR-V threatening the Seltos title in 2023. But even if Kia’s smallest crossover is ousted in 2023, the 2024 upgrades could mean it’s making a quick comeback.