There is an ever grwoingdeman for small cars in Europe, which is a market Kia hopes to corner with the release of the Picanto LPG.
This is a bi-fuel model that also delivers on the need for lower emissions and cheaper running costs that Europeans like.
The Picanto will deliver on all counts when it is released in Europe near the end of the year. For now, consumers can see it on display at the Frankfurt Auto Show.
The new variant will record fuel economy in LPG mode of 5.8l / 100km and CO2 emissions of 100g/km – with automatic stop-start (ISG) equipped models achieving 5.6l / 100km and 97g/km.
The all-new Kia Picanto LPG will come in a pair of eqipment levels and body styles.
Customers can choose from the 3-door or 5-door variants, just as they can with others in the Picanto lineup.
The Sole LPG-powered vehicle with 7-year warranty
Kia believes the new model will account for 7% of all Picanto sales when it is made available later this year. It will be the only LPG powered vehicle anywhere in the world that comes with a 7-year warranty.
The first countries to take delivery of the Picanto LPG will be Germany, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Greece, Portugal and the Netherlands.
LPG engine specifications, horsepower ratings
Under the hood of the Picanto LPG will be Kia’s three-cylinder 1.0-litre Kappa engine which produces 67-horsepower and 90Nm of torque.
There is an additional fuel system added that allows LPG to be processed to the engine. The fuel system that does this is fitted with a solenoid valve that turns the liquid LPG into gas to power the car.
There are a pair of fuel tanks found in the Picanto LPG, starting with a traditional 35-liter petrol tank fitted in the standard engine position ahead of the rear axle.
There will also be a 27-liter pressurized LPG tank in the spot where the spare wheel used to be stored. Boot capacity comes in at a very nice 152 liters.
Switching from petrol to LPG, and back again, is as simple as pushing a button on the dashboard.
The remainder of the interior remains pretty much the as the rest of the Picanto family. The one other exception is the addition of a dual fuel guage that shows levels on both the petrol and LPG tanks.
The addition of the extra tank and other LPG equipment adds 51 kg to the weight of the car.
Despite that extra weight, the brisk acceleration of the car is maintained by lowering the final drive ratio.
The new LPG-powered Kia Picanto comes with a top speed of 95mph, which is the same as the standard 1,0L petrol model.