The Kia Carnival facelift has been caught testing in the snow, and all signs point to a dramatic restyling for Australia’s most popular people mover.

    Up front there’s a new headlight cluster arranged in a vertical stack. As is the vogue, there might be a separate horizontal strip of LED driving lights close to the bonnet’s edge, but we can’t see any clues about this through the prototype’s camouflage.

    The front bumper also features a new grille, and revised lower intake design. The Carnival’s overall profile and glasshouse have not been altered as part of the update.

    At the back there’s a new hockey-stick tail-light cluster poking out from the disguise. Thanks to the covering we can’t quite tell if they flow into a red plastic strip that spans the width of the tailgate.

    The licence plate holder now sits further down the tailgate, closer to the rear bumper.

    All up the exterior changes bring the Carnival closer in design to other large Kia models, including the three-row Telluride crossover, and the upcoming all-electric EV9.

    With much of the dash covered, we can’t see what Kia has in store for the cabin.

    It’s possible the interior will receive a less radical makeover compared to exterior. The only thing we’re able to make out, so far, is a large horizontal slab housing the instrumentation display and touchscreen infotainment system.

    At the very least these units will feature the company’s latest operating system, and graphics package.

    Reports indicate the Carnival will gain the hybrid drivetrain used in the Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe.

    The setup used in those crossovers generates a total of 169kW and 350Nm by sandwiching a 44kW/264Nm electric motor between the six-speed auto and a 132kW/265Nm 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine.

    In terms of power, that places the hybrid between the 148kW/440Nm 2.2-litre turbo-diesel, and the 216kW/355Nm 3.5-litre V6.

    The Carnival continues to dominate the people mover segment in Australia with 8054 sold in 2022.

    Thanks to the discontinuation of both the Honda Odyssey and the people mover version of the LDV G10, the Carnival accounted for 73.3 per cent of people mover segment under $60,000.

    Even taking into account MPVs over $60,000, Carnival sales made up 66.9 per cent of all people movers sold locally last year.

    MORE: Everything Kia Carnival

    Derek Fung

    Derek Fung would love to tell you about his multiple degrees, but he's too busy writing up some news right now. In his spare time Derek loves chasing automotive rabbits down the hole. Based in New York, New York, Derek loves to travel and is very much a window not an aisle person.

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