The popular Kia Stonic compact SUV will see some running changes for the 2025 model year, headlined by the range-wide adoption of the 1.0 T-GDI three-cylinder petrol engine.
Kia’s local product boss Roland Rivero told CarExpert the brand’s smallest crossover will retain a three-tier range like the current range, though the GT-Line’s turbo petrol engine will be added to lower grades.
“Model year 2025 will see the demise of the 1.4 MPI [petrol engine] globally from the range. We plan to maintain a three-trim strategy for Stonic, all powered by the 1.0-litre turbo – more to be shared closer to launch,” Mr Rivero said.
Currently, the Stonic S and Sport variants – which are currently subject to a stop-sale due to crippled supply – are powered by a 74kW/133Nm 1.4-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine offered with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic.
Meanwhile, the flagship Stonic GT-Line features a 74kW/172Nm 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine paired exclusively with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic in Australia.
A more powerful 48V mild-hybrid version of this powertrain is offered overseas, though it’s been ruled out here.
It could, however, mean that the Stonic could introduce a six-speed manual version of the 1.0 T-GDI format in lower grades, should demand for manual transmissions in lower grades be strong enough – it’s currently offered with the atmo petrol, why not with the boosted three-pot?
While Mr Rivero wouldn’t be drawn to confirm exact timings, a Kia Australia spokesperson told CarExpert last month production of the “model-year upgrade” is due to kick off during the first half of 2024. So, expect the revised range to lob around mid-year or during the third quarter.
It’s also expected that this model-year upgrade will bring equipment and safety enhancements to the Stonic – and overseas markets might be a guide of what to expect.
Kia added an enhanced safety suite to the Stonic a couple of years back in line with the mid-life facelift that saw the debut of the Stonic nameplate in Australia – however, not all of it came here.
Available features overseas that are currently left off the local specification include adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. All of these are becoming increasingly common in the Stonic’s rivals.
We’ve recently seen the Picanto city car gain blind-spot and rear cross-traffic assist (with intervention not just audible and visual warnings), so we’re pretty confident those features will be added to the Stonic for MY25.
Despite supply challenges, the Stonic held its position as the second best-selling vehicle in the Light SUV VFACTS segment in 2023.
With 6983 registrations (down 18.4 per cent) and 13.3 per cent market share, the Stonic was only beaten by the venerable Mazda CX-3 (15,776 units) and sat ahead of the Toyota Yaris Cross (6514 units).
Stay tuned to CarExpert for all the latest.