Avenue Motors NJ Used
 Sales 973-319-8566
Service 973-313-5256
1453 Lawrence St Rahway, NJ 07065
Today 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Open Today !
Sales: 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
All Hours

2023 Kia Seltos vs. 2023 Hyundai Kona specs

1. Overview

The 2023 Kia Seltos and 2023 Hyundai Kona are compact crossovers that are packed with value. They are perfect cars for people who live in the urban or suburban area and are looking for a car that can serve every need, from driving children to sports practice to going out with friends. With their small size, high seating position, and available all-wheel drive, buying any of these cars will bring you into the SUV culture without straying too far from the car world. Both of these cars have just been released at the 2022 LA Autoshow and are planned to go on sale in 2022. This comparison will give you the insight of which cars you will get the best value from. Starting off with the prices, the Seltos tops out at around $30,700 whereas the Kona tops out at about $30,720. This is about the same price and base for both of these cars, but similar to the Kona, Kia is also planning on releasing a smaller SUV that will be under the Seltos called the Seltos Light. Because of this, many people think the Seltos could rise in price because it could take the place of the Seltos. Regardless, because of the Seltos being more of a higher-class vehicle for Kia, it could retain a higher value in the long run compared to the Kona. This is good for potential buyers of the Seltos because both Hyundai and Kia vehicles scream reliability and this could give the Seltos an opportunity to prove itself. Now moving onto the features. The Seltos gives off a more urban feel, while the Kona looks more like a sporty hatchback. For the Seltos, Kia claims that it has a "sophisticated urban look," and for the Kona, Hyundai says it has a "true sporty SUV." For the urban look that it is, the Kona revokes that self-given title in safety orange, lime twist, and surf blue if the consumer would like to spend a bit extra for that. This is optional and that specific color is only available to the refueling limited model, but this is a clear sign that Hyundai is marketing the Kona in a more fun way. Both of these each have their own unique appealing style, so this one is up to personal preference between the consumer. Learn More: Who makes kia cars in our article 'Introduction to Kia Model Specific Reviews and Features'.

1.1. Exterior Design

Both vehicles will start production mid-year for the 2023 model year, so they should begin arriving at dealers in the third quarter. Pricing and full details will be released closer to the on-sale date.

Hyundai's update for the Kona sees more significant changes than what Kia is doing with the Seltos. It appears all trims will have new front and rear fascias, with the lower trims sporting a more geometrically complex design than the 'floating' grille of the current model. Overall, we'd characterize this as going from simple to busy. The higher trims with the turbo engine will have a new design that replaces the current model's large grille with a more conventional lower opening flanked by small vents. This design will also incorporate a hood that looks to be more aggressively sculpted than the current model.

Kia's SUV is getting a visual refresh with new headlight and rear light designs, as well as what appears to be a decal on the hood. We're not sure what that's about. The pictures also show a new SX Prestige trim, sporting a different grille design with more chrome and a chrome strip on the hood. The Seltos will only be one model year removed from its launch, so it's not clear what Kia is hoping to accomplish by making what appear to be small changes.

1.2. Interior Features

Notably, the Kona has a slight edge on safety features. All Konas come standard equipped with Hyundai Smart Sense security features, which includes safe exit warning, rear cross traffic alert, and parking distance warning. The Kona has many interior safety features with the goal of preventing accidents.

While the Kona may have a slight edge on infotainment features, both small SUVs have similar comfort and convenience features. This includes power sunroof, leather seats, and dual-zone automatic temperature control. Neither vehicle offers ventilated seats, however this makes sense given the price of the vehicles. In regards to audio systems, both vehicles offer the same features, but the Seltos' sound quality is where it edges out over the Kona. The Seltos offers a Bose sound system that has great sound quality. You will have to configure the Seltos SX Turbo and SX-Prestige to get the Bose system, however every other Kia Seltos comes standard with a Harman/Kardon system, which is still superior to the Kona. Every Kona apart from the base model has the option to upgrade to the premium audio system.

Hyundai Kona: The Kona's interior is very futuristic; some may say it looks like a spaceship! Headlining the Kona's interior is the availability for a 10.25-inch infotainment screen, which looks massive in the somewhat small cabin. This is a rare feature for the small SUV class, and is sure to attract tech-savvy buyers. All Konas come standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Kia Seltos: The 2023 Kia Seltos has a great interior, for its rather low price. CNET Roadshow says it best: "The interior is much nicer than you'd expect." All 2023 Seltos come with a 6-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, and a rear camera display.

1.3. Performance and Engine Options

Kona's range-topping engine is something more powerful, a 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder that makes 175 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque, and it's available only in the Kona Ultimate, where, for the sake of one-upsmanship with the Seltos, the Kona is priced at $29,999. This last nugget will be important for our future comparo, which may already be a lock-in.

Perhaps surprisingly, the Kona also comes with a choice of an Atkinson-cycle 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 147 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque, paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, or a turbo four that makes 175 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque, mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. The extra-cost all-wheel-drive system on both of these engines includes a lock function that routes up to 50 percent of the torque to the rear wheels at up to 25 mph and also includes Hill-start Assist Control.

Kia says that the Seltos has a base 2.0-liter, Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine that makes 146 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque and delivers power to the front wheels via a continuously variable transmission, while an available 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder will make a class-leading 175 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. That optional engine will be mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The Kia Seltos and the Hyundai Kona are compact sport-utility vehicles that are available with all-wheel drive and have good ground clearance, and their respective automakers like to think of them as SUVs. We'll see how much off-road ability they really have in the future, once we get a shot at Seltos with an AWD system. Both are deeply based on front-wheel-drive cars, so they are realistically just as bad (or just as good) in off-road situations as the average economy car. But the aspect of available all-wheel drive does give both models a measure of distinction from your typical economy car and the fuel burners of this world. Here are details on the mechanical packages that make the magic work.

2. Safety and Technology

The new Kona and Seltos come with several advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) as standard fitment in the USA, and that could be a game changer in this segment. Kia offers two different ADAS systems in the Seltos, dependent on trim level. S and SX variants are equipped with Kia's 'Drive Wise' package which includes collision and blind spot avoidance, lane keep and follow assist, smart cruise control and rear cross traffic alert with avoidance assist. These models also get four airbags and rear ISOFIX child seat mountings. The EX Seltos is fitted with the 'Advanced Technology' package that adds forward collision avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, safe exit assist, high beam assist, LED headlights and adaptive front lighting system. This particular vehicle is fitted with six airbags, and the only difference from the previous system is the omission of rear cross traffic avoidance assist. It should be noted that the latter is standard on all Seltos grade models in New Zealand where only the EX is available. This gives Kia a unique advantage over its compact SUV rivals, as it is the only vehicle in this segment to offer two separate ADAS systems dependent on trim level. Standard features that are common to both NBA '20 Seltos and Kona include lane departure warning and lane keep assist, traction and stability control, and the usual suite of anti-lock and electronic brake force distribution technologies. Both of these vehicles also have a 5-star ANCAP safety rating.

2.1. Advanced Safety Features

The 2023 Seltos LX base model is loaded with several great safety features. Included in Drive Wise are Lane Keeping and Lane Following assist. This is a nice feature for those long highway drives and can help prevent fatigue in the driver, causing a moment of lapsed attention resulting in drifting from the lane. High beam assist, a feature that will automatically switch the car from high beam to low beam when it senses oncoming traffic, is also included in the base model Seltos. Last but not least, in the base model Seltos, is the Forward Collision Avoidance Assist. This feature is a low-speed, camera-based system that warns drivers of potential collisions and will apply the brake to avoid or mitigate a collision. All features are very beneficial, and it is great to see them all included in the lowest trim level of Seltos.

Kia's Seltos is an SUV known for its capability to pack a large punch in terms of safety features without emptying the pocketbook. All trim levels of the 2023 Seltos come standard with the Kia Drive Wise Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS). Kona, on the other hand, offers very limited safety features on the base model and a more favorable selection of certain features on the most expensive trim level. Ultimately, with Kona, you get what you pay for in terms of ADAS.

2.2. Infotainment System

In order to entertain occupants and make their journey not as dreary, both automobiles seek to provide a comprehensive infotainment system to engulf these folks in another world while they travel through ours. Both companies supply an outlining of the process and services which are available to use with their infotainment system at a basic level. Kia describes their infotainment solution as, "With UVO, you can easily turn your vehicle into a connected car and use your phone to access control services, on-demand diagnostics, and advanced safety features. It is a telematics service which can be used with both Android and Apple phones." This description provides a bottom line of the abilities of the application that Kia offers, but does not provide too significantly much detail about exactly what the service is capable of. UVO looks is a centralized application used to access a number of different services related to a vehicle. Hyundai itemizes the application utility duo of BlueLink and Android Auto. "A number of these are comfy features that you used to have with traditional remotes from home to service like air conditioning and heater control. You can also start and stop your car from your phone and set automatic timers to start your vehicle in certain weather conditions." This application sounds very similar to Kia's UVO, but it sounds as if some of these services are free to use as they are automatic for the vehicle without cell phone control. Android Auto essentially mirrors the phone of the operator and allows them to manage calls, messaging, music, maps, and surf their phone through the vehicle's display and also can be used with Android and Apple devices. The functions of these applications are arguably the most important features to access on a vehicle and will appeal to a very broad audience given the near necessity of smartphone usage in today's society.

2.3. Connectivity Options

The standard connectivity options for both the 2023 Kia Seltos and 2023 Hyundai Kona are sparse, with neither offering navigation, Wi-Fi capability, or a trial period of satellite radio. Both vehicles feature a USB port and Bluetooth, with the Kia offering a second USB port and the Hyundai Bluetooth connection for two devices simultaneously. Smartphone integration is the highlight here; the Kia offers standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto with a 3-month trial of UVO eServices connecting to a smartphone app. The Kona claims to include smartphone integration without specifying, stating that some apps may not be available in all areas. At the Seltos' top S Turbo trim, a free 3-month SiriusXM Radio trial is included to take advantage of the built-in steering wheel audio controls. A common issue for both manufacturers is that features may vary by vehicle, so it is important to review the vehicle before purchase if basic connectivity services are a priority.

3. Comfort and Convenience

The Seltos and Kona both belong to the smaller class of SUVs, unlike their bigger siblings the Sportage and Tucson, and this is shown in their cabin sizes. Seltos is 172.0 inches long and has a wheelbase of 103.5 inches. The length right now is on the money; it's actually the same as the similarly small Subaru Crosstrek and only a few inches longer than the Honda HR-V. But that wheelbase is noticeably longer than both those competitors, and Kia says that means the Seltos has the most space in its class. Unfortunately, when Kia touts class-leading space it often does so by measuring legroom, but the company hasn't provided specific numbers here, so we'll have to wait for more details to see how it really stacks up. Kona is 164.0 inches long and has a wheelbase of 102.4 inches, but as those numbers suggest the space is not used as efficiently. Front seat passengers get slightly more room in the Hyundai than in the Kia, but the rear seats are significantly tighter and Hyundai has actually described the Kona as having "class-leading" space only in relation to other small Hyundais like the Accent and Elantra. In any case, the Seltos looks likely to be the best choice for those looking to stick with a smaller SUV without giving up too much space. Both vehicles are built on new platforms, incidentally, and each one promises a more refined ride than their respective competition. The Kona promises a more lively driving experience than typical for this kind of vehicle due to a sport-tuned suspension, so I think the Seltos might better suit the typical Kia buyer with more comfort-oriented tuning. We'll have to test it to be sure.

3.1. Seating Capacity and Space

The Kia Seltos and the Hyundai Kona both have seating for five people. The Kona provides 113.3 cubic feet of interior space, and the Seltos provides a bit more at 120.3 cubic feet. Legroom in both vehicles is about the same, with 41.4 inches of front legroom and 34.6 inches of rear legroom. The Seltos wins when it comes to headroom. It provides 39.5 inches of front headroom and 38.3 inches of rear headroom, whereas the Kona only provides 39.6 inches of front headroom and 37.8 inches of rear headroom. Split-folding rear seats are standard in both vehicles. However, the Seltos offers a reclining rear seat. On the top Seltos SX Turbo, the rear seat also has adjustable center headrests, a feature usually reserved for the front seats. A passenger who is likely to spend a lot of time in the rear seat may consider these features to be very beneficial.

3.2. Climate Control

The 2023 Kia Seltos has an integrated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system with an air ionizer. The air ionizer is designed to help neutralize airborne contaminants, reduce mildew odors, and remove germs from the cabin air. The system automatically activates the air conditioning if the windshield and front side windows are fogged up. The Seltos has automatic climate control standard or available on all 5 and 7 passenger models featuring a dual-zone configuration and an auto defogging system. The 2023 Hyundai Kona includes an automatic climate control system standard or available on all trims except the Essential. Kona's climate control system features a defogging system; however, Kona is not equipped with an ionizer. Both the Seltos and Kona offer heated front seats standard or available on all trims above the base model. The Kona provides a bit more passenger comfort with an available heated steering wheel feature on all non-Essential trims.

3.3. Keyless Entry and Start

Although both vehicles come with keyless entry and push start, Hyundai has integrated their system and made it standard on all trims at a lower cost, and Kia only offers it on the 1.6T model, which is already a higher cost. This part of the comparison I was very disappointed about because I absolutely love not having to use my keys: opening the car and trunk while the key stays in my pocket and starting the car without using the key. However, it is another point where it is great value for the Hyundai Kona, and the cost to get the same feature from Kia is much greater.

Both the Kia and Hyundai offer keyless entry to the vehicle. The Kia, however, only offers push start on the base model. The 1.6T has a proximity key with push button start, whereas the base has to use the key to start the car. The Hyundai Kona offers a proximity key with push button start from the lowest trim level, which seems to be more convenient than having it only on the 1.6T model of the Kia. The Kona seems to have more convenience with their keyless entry and start system coming standard at a lower price than the Seltos.

3.4. Storage and Cargo Space

The Kia Seltos has 752L of cargo space and 1393L with the rear seats folded, while the Hyundai Kona has 610L of space and 1106L when the rear seats are folded flat. That means the Seltos has about 25.3 cu.ft of space and Kona has about 21.5 cu.ft of space. (I converted the litres to cubic feet using a conversion rate of 1 cubic foot = 28.3168466 litres, so the real numbers may differ slightly.) This means that with the rear seats up the Seltos has 142 cu.ft more space and 287 cu.ft more space with the seats down. This is a pretty significant difference. While the numbers say a lot, it's important to look at the actual space available and what you can do with it. Both vehicles have a low load-lip on the tailgate, making it easy to slide heavy or bulky items in and out. Side by side, the Kona doesn't look all that much smaller than the Seltos when empty, but when you start to load them with various items, it becomes more apparent where the disadvantages lie. A stroller or pram can be loaded in and out of the Seltos with ease, sitting flat in the boot with plenty of spare room. In the Kona it takes a bit of fiddling in order to get it in and out without having to adjust the angle and when it's in, it takes up a lot of the available boot space. Further still, the Seltos has the option of stowing the rear cargo cover under the floor if removed. This is a small feature but really saves the hassle of finding a place to put it, such as in the garage where it'll likely stay for most of the time you own the car. Both vehicles have 60:40 split folding rear seats and a relatively flat floor. The extra bit of space the Seltos has here can quite easily mean the difference between going in one trip or two if you are having to load things right up to the level of the rear seat. Being a low-cost vehicle, neither the Seltos nor the Kona have a power tailgate on any model, so you will have to lift it up yourself! It's worth noting that these vehicles are on the smaller side of the SUV market and both have less space than their bigger brothers, the Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tucson. Having compared the space in both, the Seltos is a clear winner and having more cargo space and proves to be more practical than the Kona in this area.

4. Pricing and Warranty

Kia leads the market in their warranty coverage, offering a 7-year unlimited warranty, 7-year capped price service, and 7-year roadside assist for the Seltos. This is extremely competitive, and rarely mainstream manufacturers will offer a warranty of this length. Hyundai offers a 5-year unlimited warranty and no capped price service length specified for the Kona, as the car will not be subject to a service pricing structure until it is no longer eligible for the Hyundai lifetime service plan. Both of these warranties are very long in comparison to other manufacturers and are a very strong point of appeal as they offer long-term peace of mind for the buyer. It should be noted that the warranty for Kona suggests that the capped price service length undefined may mean that the standard is 5-year capped price service, which is still competitive. The Hyundai Roadside Support plan operates on a once per year basis, in which the driver is entitled to roadside assistance anywhere in Australia within a calendar year that a scheduled service is completed at a Hyundai Service Centre. A person who has taken a service pack of Genuine Lifetime Service Plan, 4+ Services, or a Pre-Paid Service will be entitled to the service once complete and until the next service is due. While this plan offers a more individualized level of service, it is not as practical and trouble-free as the standard Kia roadside assist plan for Seltos owners. With a longer warranty and the best all-year-round program, Kia is the clear winner in warranty coverage for small SUVs.

The 2023 Kia Seltos boasts a set of price tags that are fairly typical for a vehicle of this type, coming in at $28,990 AUD (including GST) plus on-road costs through to $41,990 AUD. This is a competitive price point for a small SUV and is very consistent with the current market trend for similar type vehicles to meet the price point of under $30,000. However, it would seem that the premium GT Line Seltos and MY23.5 variants are inching a bit close to the $50,000 mark. A price of $43,000 RRP for the GT Line Model is rather expensive for a car in this segment, particularly when it is not powered by a notably more powerful engine. By contrast, the Hyundai Kona starts at a price point of $38,785 at the Active 2.0 MPi Auto model and goes through to $53,440 for the Highlander AWD electric and $62,440 for the Elite Highlander. Essentially, what we can draw from this is that the Kona can be slightly more expensive than the equivalent Seltos model. However, there are only marginal differences in the engine outputs and specifications of each vehicle. It would be fair to say that Seltos is a more value for money purchase when comparing these two SUVs.

4.1. Price Comparison

All in all, there is a lot of value in the Seltos. A stylish and modern looking car with a good level of standard equipment on all models, offering a spacious interior and decent quality trim, all at a relatively affordable price compared to its competitors in the small to medium SUV market.

Prices range from $25,990 for the S model to $41,990 for the GT-Line with the 1.6L Turbo GDi engine. Step up pricing between the models is quite sharp due to different engines and/or transmissions costs and the customer's option of AWD on the higher trim level models. Buyers will need to assess which engine and transmission suits their needs and budget for stepping up to a more premium version of the Seltos.

The S, Sport, and Sport+ offer standard Automatic (Intelligent Variable Transmission or IVT) with the 2.0L MPi engine and the 1.6L Turbo GDi engine on an AWD variant. The GT-Line has a standard 7-Speed Dual Clutch Transmission and the 1.6L Turbo GDi engine is only available with AWD.

Kia offers the Seltos in five different trim levels: the S, Sport, Sport+, GT-Line, and the GT-Line with optional safety pack. The Australian Seltos range offers a choice of two petrol engines: a 2.0L Multi-Point Injection (MPi) engine and a 1.6L Turbo GDi engine. The S, Sport, and Sport+ are available with the 2.0L MPi engine while the Sport+ also has a choice of the 1.6L Turbo GDi engine. Both engines are standard on the GT-Line.

The Kia Seltos enters the Australian market in late 2019 and debuts with a very strong initial drive away pricing. Kia's marketing machine has been well engaged in the lead up to the Seltos' release and it's clear their target market is individuals or families who want a small to medium 2WD or AWD SUV that looks good, feels good, and has a touch of class to it.

When it comes to purchasing a new vehicle, price is a very important factor for the vast majority of buyers and in Australia's small SUV market, especially in the light SUV segment, it is pivotal. Australian buyers are very much price driven and seek value for money in their vehicle purchase.

4.2. Warranty Coverage

The Kia has a slightly more extended basic warranty than the Hyundai. Kia's basic warranty covers the car for 5 years or 60,000 miles, while Hyundai's covers the Kona for 5 years or 50,000 miles. On the other hand, Hyundai has a more extended warranty for the powertrain. The Kona's powertrain is covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles, compared to the Kia's 10 years or 100,000 miles. Generally, powertrains fail at a lower rate than vehicles, with the average age of a vehicle in its heyday being 11 years old, and manufacturers are making huge leaps in improving their reliability and lifespan. Due to the average age of a vehicle in the 2010s being 11 years old, and the average lifespan of a vehicle being about 15 years, having a long warranty means more than it ever did. With the average miles driven a year being 12,000, a six-year warranty would be 72,000 miles. Although it's not one of the most critical factors to take into account when buying or leasing a new vehicle, the length of a manufacturer's warranty can provide much-needed peace of mind. The confidence that a consumer has in their vehicle's manufacturer can reflect in the vehicle's expected dependability and lifespan. Buyers and lessees that plan on keeping the vehicle beyond the term of the warranty are often interested in purchasing an extended warranty to prolong the period of time the vehicle is covered. The expected reliability and lifespan of a vehicle can affect a consumer's decision to purchase an extended warranty from the manufacturer. In summation, Kia and Hyundai's confidence in the Seltos and Kona can sway potential customers to expect a longer and more reliable lifespan, and the longer lifespan of the Seltos and Kona would lead to increased interest in an extended warranty.