Kia Motors launched the Carnival MPV at the Auto Expo 2020 at Greater Noida. And this MPV was the real MVP for Kia!
Unlike the Innova Crysta and Marazzo, the Carnival MPV will not just be targeted towards the Asian audience but, it will target the global audience. Additionally, Kia wants to keep this model exclusively for private buyers, therefore, not playing with numbers in this instance. The brand is not willing to let this model be used as a taxi service. This is probably the only model in the Indian market which will be kept exclusively for private buyers.
Kia plans to use this model to build the brand’s perceptions and image within the Indian market audience. The aim is to ensure the market understands Kia’s ability to produce premium models. However, even at just the brand building stage, Kia Motors has received over 3,500 bookings for the Carnival MPV (and this is before the price or time of launch is revealed!). We have a strong inkling that this model will do the task Kia wants it to.
The Carnival is being offered with a 2.2liter Diesel engine. The maximum power expected from this model is 197bhp while the maximum torque is 440Nm. Additionally, the transmission for this model is going to be an automatic.
The interesting part is that the brand has decided to manufacture the model locally at the Anantpur Plant situated at Andhra Pradesh. This approach is similar to the Kia Seltos. Initially the brand decided to take the CKD approach with the Carnival, however, now Kia is looking at maximum possible localisation of the model. Out of the components required for the model only a few of them are expected to be imported.
Kia Motors does plan on taking the export approach with Carnival as well. Even though there hasn’t been any official confirmation of the same, considering the success Kia achieved with Seltos, it is expected Carnival will be exported as well. The Seltos, while manufactured locally, was exported to USA, Europe, Australia, and Korea. Even now the numbers are at a constant rise. The export units was just 471 in September 2019 and reached a peak of 6,341 units by December 2019. On the other hand, the number of units sold for domestic consumption was 4,645 units.
The base price of the Kia is ₹23.95 lakhs and the top variance is priced at ₹33.95 lakhs. The following are the prices of the BS6 compliant Kia Carnival:
7-seater premium – ₹24.95 lakhs
8-seater premium – ₹25.15 lakhs
7-seater prestige – ₹28.95 lakhs
8-seater prestige – ₹29.95 lakhs
7-seater limousine – ₹33.95 lakhs
Given the pricing, it’s quite clear that Kia Motors isn’t really interested to shake the sales figures of the Innova. Moreover, we don’t think it would be able to anyway because of how different the stance, styling and appeal of this model is. It’s not high off the ground, so not a politician mover and it does not have a 3 lakh kms strong Toyota engine, so no taxi either. The Carnival is more of a vanity vehicle for up and coming young business moguls who intend to be seated in the back of an S-class one day. And, that’s exactly what it is. A taste of luxury and that too at a third of the price. Because the features you are offered in this vehicle, don’t even start before you reach the 90 lakh INR mark. The Carnival targets those who want a Merc V-class or a Toyota Vellfire at a third of their price.