2023 Kia Seltos update detailed, hits Australia this year

Kia has detailed the updates for the 2023 Seltos in Korea, which include a new transmission and more safety and convenience tech. It's here this year.

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The 2023 Kia Seltos has been detailed in Korea ahead of an Australian launch in the fourth quarter of 2022.

The updated Seltos, at least in Korea, will offer a new eight-speed automatic transmission with an uprated turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine producing 147kW of power at 6000rpm and 265Nm of torque between 1600 and 4500rpm.

Currently, the 1.6-litre turbo produces 130kW at 6000rpm and 265Nm between 1500 and 4500rpm, and is mated with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic.

The base engine is a carryover 110kW/180Nm naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre four-cylinder mated with a continuously-variable transmission.

Kia has also confirmed a raft of new features for the Seltos, though it’s unclear how many of these will come to Australia.

It’s the latest Hyundai Motor Group product to get the clever Remote Smart Parking Assist, allowing you to move the vehicle forward and backward with the key fob.

There’s an available surround-view camera, as well as intelligent speed limit assist and reverse AEB.

New convenience features include memory for the driver’s seat, a power tailgate, USB-C outlets in the cabin, and digital key support.

As previously revealed, the updated interior has a wraparound display housing a 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen and an available 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, giving the Seltos a look similar to that of the new Sportage.

Like its bigger sibling, there’s also a rotary dial shifter.

Kia says it’s also applied sound-insulating glass to the windscreen to improve cabin quietness.

As expected of a mid-life update, there are also new wheel designs and new colours, including a new blue and a new green.

Interior colours comprise black, caramel, and ‘midnight green’.

The latter is available exclusively with the Gravity, a top-spec model that Kia says is “centred on luxurious and dark design elements”.

There’s a unique grille, front and rear skid plates, headlight garnishes, and black-finish 18-inch alloy wheels and exterior mirrors.

The updated Seltos is fractionally (20mm) longer at 4390mm, with an identical 1800mm width.

External changes across the range include a revised grille and bumper, as well as new LED daytime running light signatures.

The updates are more significant down back, where there are restyled, more vertically-oriented tail lights connected by a full-width light bar.

There’s also a revised bumper with more discreet exhaust outlets, while the rear fog lights appear to have been moved further down.

Kia Australia has previously confirmed the 2023 Seltos will gain blind-spot assist as standard in lower-spec S and Sport trims.

However, buyers will lose the ability to add a full range of safety features as part of an optional Safety Pack.

The current Seltos S and Sport miss out on blind-spot, rear cross-traffic, and lane-following assists, along with the advanced autonomous emergency braking system with cyclist detection offered on Sport Plus and GT-Line models.

The Safety Pack currently offered brings cyclist detection for the AEB, adaptive cruise control, an electric parking brake, power-folding side mirrors, and junction assist.

The simpler range is a move to make life easier for dealers and stock controllers as the world grapples with shipping delays, semiconductor shortages, and COVID-related shutdowns.

Kia also points to the fact the Seltos range has a five-star ANCAP rating regardless of which AEB system is fitted as a reason for dropping the option.

Along with the shuffled safety suite, the 2023 Seltos range will likely gain rear air vents across the range, and base models will ride on alloy wheels instead of the steelies fitted to the current model.

It’ll also follow the new Niro in getting the option of Kia Connect.

A combination of both live services and a smartphone app, Kia Connect uses an onboard modem and Optus SIM. Kia will also make over-the-air updates available.

Using the smartphone app, you’ll be able to remotely lock/unlock and start the car, as well as adjust the climate control and seat heating and ventilation, check the vehicle’s status, and track its location.

The Seltos update won’t bring a hybrid option, as had been previously rumoured.

Kia Australia has confirmed the Niro instead will serve customers looking for a small hybrid SUV.

MORE: Everything Kia Seltos

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William Stopford

William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel (remember that?), briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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