The 2021 Kia Seltos is an all-new SUV from Kia that slots between the Soul and the Sportage. It’s a compact and stylish SUV that comes with solid options like a turbocharged engine and 10.25” touchscreen with navigation. It was designed to pack similar style to the Telluride, but at a much more affordable price.
Despite its compact footprint, the Seltos is surprisingly spacious and versatile inside. It also offers a solid amount of cargo space!
Kia calls its Seltos “rugged, refined and right-sized.” It’s available in five trim levels and there are two engines. It starts from $21,990 before the destination charge.
To learn even more about the all-new Kia Seltos, continue reading below!
Kia says that, similar to its popular Telluride’s design theme, the Seltos is a marriage of bold design and delicate details. It was meant to provide some of the same magic as the Telluride, but at a much more affordable starting price and in a smaller footprint.
The compact SUV features a tall front end and 7.2 inches of ground clearance that help give it a more rugged and athletic look and feel. Kia’s signature tiger nose grille stands out, as do the sporty and unique wheels with eye-catching red center caps. The wheels are offered in up to 18” in size.
There’s also an optional two-tone roof that helps give the Seltos an added layer of coolness and character. Plus, there are available LED headlights with daytime running lights!
While the Seltos has a compact footprint, its interior is surprisingly spacious! There’s generous hip, shoulder, leg, and head room in both rows. The interior is also highly versatile.
Rear seat passengers can stretch out thanks to the standard rear seat reclining feature. And you can actually lower the rear luggage board to increase your cargo space while there are passengers sitting in the back.
When nobody is sitting there, however, you can fold that rear seat down and lift the luggage board for a flat folding surface. It allows you to store an impressive amount of cargo! There’s up to 62.8 cubic feet of cargo space offered behind the first row. There are also available roof rails with your Seltos for storing additional items.
As for the technology featured inside the Seltos, there’s an 8” touchscreen display that comes standard with a rearview camera and also Apple CarPlay/Android Auto. There’s an available 10.25” touchscreen, though, which is quite impressive! It also comes with satellite radio, UVO telematics, navigation, and split-screen display functionality.
For the first time in a Kia, there’s an available 8-speaker Bose premium sound system. The eight high-performance speakers truly help amp your audio experience! There’s also special mood lighting to go with it. Six sophisticated color themes echo the sound connected mood lighting found in the Kia Soul. The Seltos’ lighting changes color and intensity based on the volume level of the music.
There’s an available wireless phone charger, meanwhile, for cord-free power on the go. Plus, up to three USB charging ports. There’s also available multi-Bluetooth wireless connectivity, which allows for two phones to connect simultaneously. That means one could control music while the other controls navigation.
Other options for your Seltos include heated front seats, automatic temperature control, a sunroof, the two-tone roof we mentioned earlier, and a larger 7” instrument cluster that has a high-tech feel.
There are two different engines offered with the 2021 Kia Seltos. The standard engine is the 2.0-liter four-cylinder MPI engine that produces 146 horsepower and 132 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s paired with a continuously variable transmission.
There’s also a 1.6-liter Turbo GDI engine which makes 175 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s paired with a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. The turbocharged engine definitely offers more pep than the base engine does, and SUVs.com found it pleasant to drive!
Most of the trims comes with all-wheel drive as standard, by the way. Every Seltos also features a rear camera and six airbags. The Seltos is also a highly safe vehicle thanks its strong and rigid body, which is composed of 61 percent advanced high-strength steel and is further enhanced with 374 feet of structural adhesives.
There’s also the available Kia Drive Wise suite of advanced driver-assistance systems to help put your mind at ease. It includes blind spot collision warning, driver attention warning, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, rear-cross traffic collision avoidance, and more.
The Kia Seltos has quite an affordable starting price! The base LX trim starts at $21,990 before the destination charge. The S Turbo trim that SUVs.com had the chance to test drive starts at $25,490 before destination. And the range-topping SX Turbo trim will set you back just over $2,000 more.
No matter which Seltos trim you opt for, it’s going to have an affordable starting price. The range-topping SX Turbo with its $27,890 starting price before destination features LED headlights, the 10.25” touchscreen with navigation, heated front seats, a wireless phone charger, and the more powerful turbocharged engine with all-wheel drive.
As for competitors for the Seltos, you might want to consider the Honda HR-V, Ford EcoSport, Hyundai Kona, Nissan Kicks, Subaru Crosstrek, the new Mazda CX-30, or a number of other options.
If you’re interested in the Seltos, be sure to test drive it before purchasing it! It’s also a good idea to check with your local Kia dealership to see if there are any specials or deals that you can take advantage of.
The Seltos packs bold style in a compact footprint. You can tell Kia went out of its way to make it look edgy and fun, as it wanted to build on the momentum it has had with the Telluride. The Telluride has been wildly popular but it is a larger and more expensive vehicle, and so it does make sense for Kia to add another small SUV to its lineup that still has some of the Telluride’s magic.
While some were surprised Kia was introducing yet another small SUV to its lineup, the Seltos does add some nice variety. It offers something a little different for folks who might want something edgier than the Sportage, but don’t necessarily love the look of the Soul.
One thing to keep in mind is that the Seltos is a compact SUV and so while it does offer a turbocharged engine, it’s far from being a powerhouse. It is spacious and versatile, though, and that’s important! The standard reclining rear seat is also a nice touch.
We gave the 2021 Kia Seltos an SUVs.com deal score of 80/100. Did you watch our review of the vehicle on YouTube? Be sure to leave a comment on the video if you did!