Kia Sonet vs Toyota Urban Cruiser vs rivals: Price, power, mileage and dimensions compared

The Kia Sonet and the Toyota Urban Cruiser are the latest additions to the hugely popular sub-four-metre SUV segment. The Sonet, which is priced from Rs 6.71 lakh to Rs 11.99 lakh (ex-showroom, India), and the Urban Cruiser – Rs 8.30-11.30 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) – join the likes of the Ford EcoSport, Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Tata Nexon, Mahindra XUV300 and the Hyundai Venue in this fiercely competitive segment. Including the newest additions, the Sonet and the Urban Cruiser, there are now seven compact SUVs to choose from.

We’ve put the Sonet and Urban Cruiser up against their current rivals to see how they fares on price, power, mileage and specifications.

  • Kia Sonet has the highest ground clearance and the largest boot
  • Toyota Urban Cruiser sits in the middle, in terms of size, and near the bottom, on power
  • Sonet most efficient manual compact SUV, while Urban Cruiser and Vitara Brezza are the most frugal automatics
  • Starting price for the Sonet petrol-manualundercuts all rivals, besides the Hyundai Venue
  • The Sonet is the most affordable diesel-manualcompact SUV

Kia Sonet vs Toyota Urban Cruiser vs rivals –size comparison

Kia Sonet vs Urban Cruiser vs rivals: Dimensions
Sonet Urban Cruiser Venue Vitara Brezza Nexon XUV300 EcoSport
Length 3995mm 3995mm 3995mm 3995mm 3994mm 3995mm 3998mm
Width 1790mm 1790mm 1770mm 1790mm 1811mm 1821mm 1765mm
Height 1647mm 1640mm 1590mm 1640mm 1607mm 1617mm 1647mm
Wheelbase 2500mm 2500mm 2500mm 2500mm 2498mm 2600mm 2519mm
Wheel size 16-inch 16-inch 16-inch 16-inch 16-inch 17-inch 16-inch
Boot 392 litres 328 litres 350 litres 328 litres 350 litres 257 litres 352 litres

Despite sharing its underpinnings with Hyundai’s Venue, the Kia Sonet is larger on some aspects than its cousin. It is also class-leading on two aspects – the Sonet has the largest boot, 40litresmore than the Ford EcoSport, with which it also equals in height. In terms of width and wheelbase, the Sonet sits in the middle of the pack. The Mahindra XUV300 is the widest sub-four-metre SUV and has the longest wheelbase too, which bodes well for the interior room on offer. The Mahindra is the only model here to get 17-inch alloy wheels; the rest have 16-inch wheels. However, the XUV300 does have the smallest boot by quite a large margin. The Tata Nexon’s wheelbase is shorter by a minimum of 2mm than its rivals, while the Hyundai Venue has the lowest height.

As the Toyota Urban Cruiser and Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza are badge-engineered models, they have identical figures. While they aren’t the largest or the smallest of the lot, the 328-litre boot is on the smaller side in this segment.

Kia Sonet vs Toyota Urban Cruiser vs rivals –power and mileage comparison

Kia Sonet vs Urban Cruiser vs rivals: Petrol powertrains
Sonet Urban Cruiser Venue Vitara Brezza Nexon XUV300 EcoSport
Engine type 4 cyl, NA/3 cyl turbo 4 cyl, NA 4 cyl, NA/3 cyl, turbo 4 cyl, NA 3 cyl, turbo 3 cyl, turbo 3 cyl, NA
Displacement 1197cc/998cc 1462cc 1197cc/998cc 1462cc 1198cc 1197cc 1497cc
Power 83hp/120hp 105hp 83hp/120hp 105hp 120hp 110hp 123hp
Torque 115Nm/172Nm 138Nm 115Nm/172Nm 138Nm 170Nm 200Nm 150Nm
Manual gearbox 5-speed/6-speed iMT 5-speed 5-speed/6-speed & 6-speed iMT 5-speed 6-speed 6-speed 5-speed
Automatic gearbox -/7-speed DCT 4-speed torque convertor -/7-speed DCT 4-speed torque convertor 6-speed AMT 6-speed torque convertor
Mileage (MT) 18.4kpl/18.2kpl 17.03kpl 17.3kpl/18.1kpl 17.03kpl 17kpl 17kpl 15.9kpl
Mileage (AT) 18.3kpl 18.76kpl 18kpl 18.76kpl 14.6kpl
Mild-hybrid No AT only No AT only No No No

*NA = Naturally aspirated

The Toyota Urban Cruiser and Maruti Vitara Brezza are mechanically identical – they both have some of the lowest output figures among the seven compact SUVs and are the only ones that get a mild-hybrid system, albeit with just the automatic transmission option. The Sonet and Venue 1.2 petrols have the lowest figures, though their respective turbo-petrol versions are among the most powerful. The Ford EcoSport’s engine may not have forced induction but has the highest horsepower rating. Meanwhile, the XUV300’s unit develops the most torque. With the facelift, the Nexon petrol also got a small boost in power – it now equals the Sonet and the Venue. However, its torque figure has remained the same.

Of the petrols, besides the XUV300, all have an automatic option. Hyundai offers a total of four gearbox options – one for the 1.2 petrol, and three with the 1.0 turbo-petrol, including the newly introduced ‘clutchless manual’ transmission (iMT). This unit is also available with the Sonet, though the Kia’s 1.0 turbo engine does not get a standard manual gearbox.

When it comes to ARAI fuel-efficiency figures, the Kia Sonet in 1.2 petrol-manual form is the most fuel-efficient; it’s closely followed by the 1.0 turbocharged petrol-manual Sonet. Despite sharing its powertrain with the Sonet, the Hyundai Venue’s mileage figures are lower. The Urban Cruiser and Vitara Brezza are the most fuel-efficient automatic compact SUVs, thanks to the mild-hybrid tech on offer. The XUV300 and Nexon petrols are on even footing, while the Ford EcoSport sits at the bottom of the fuel economy table.

Kia Sonet vs Urban Cruiser vs rivals: Diesel powertrains
Sonet Venue Nexon XUV300 EcoSport
Engine type 4 cyl, turbo 4 cyl, turbo 4 cyl, turbo 4 cyl, turbo 4 cyl, turbo
Displacement 1493cc 1493cc 1497cc 1497cc 1498cc
Power 100hp (115hp AT) 100hp 110hp 117hp 100hp
Torque 240Nm (250Nm AT) 240Nm 260Nm 300Nm 215Nm
Manual gearbox 6-speed 6-speed 6-speed 6-speed 5-speed
Automatic gearbox 6-speed torque convertor 6-speed AMT 6-speed AMT
Mileage (MT) 24.1kpl 23.3kpl 21.5kpl 20kpl 21.7kpl
Mileage (AT) 19kpl

Toyota and Maruti Suzuki don’t offer a diesel engine option with their respective sub-four-metre SUVs, but it onlyplaces them at a smaller disadvantage than you might think, as demand in this segment is skewed toward petrols.

In terms of output, the Mahindra XUV300 diesel is the most powerful, though it’s also the least efficient. What’s interesting is that the Sonet diesel-automatic is slightly more powerful than its manual counterpart and comes in second on horsepower, but the Nexon diesel has a bit more torque. The Venue diesel, which is only on offer in manual guise, and the Sonet manual are more powerful than the EcoSport.

As with the petrols, the Sonet diesel-manual’s mileage figure is 0.8kpl higher than the Venue’s, making it the most efficient diesel compact SUV. The Sonet diesel-auto uses a relatively inefficient torque converter unit, which results in a 19kpl ARAI rating. However, expect a more sophisticated driving experience than the Nexon diesel-AMT and XUV300 diesel-AMT, which may be relatively more frugal.

Kia Sonet vsToyota Urban Cruiser vs rivals –price comparison

Kia Sonet vs Urban Cruiser vs rivals: Price range
Sonet Urban Cruiser* Venue Vitara Brezza* Nexon XUV300 EcoSport*
Petrol-MT Rs 6.71-11.99 lakh Rs 8.30-9.80 lakh Rs 6.75-11.28 lakh Rs 7.34-9.98 lakh Rs 7.00-10.75 lakh Rs 7.95-11.12 lakh Rs 8.18-11.22 lakh
Petrol-AT Rs 10.49-12.89 lakh Rs 9.80-11.30 lakh Rs 9.67-11.65 lakh Rs 9.75-11.40 lakh Rs 8.45-11.35 lakh Rs 10.67-11.57 lakh
Diesel-MT Rs 8.05-11.99 lakh Rs 8.16-11.59 lakh Rs 8.45-12.10 lakh Rs 8.70-11.90 lakh Rs 8.68-11.72 lakh
Diesel-AT Rs 10.39-12.89 lakh Rs 9.80-12.70 lakh Rs 10.20-12.30 lakh
Standard warranty 3 years/unlimited kilometres (est) 3 years/1 lakh kilometres (est) 3 years/unlimited kilometres 2 years/40,000km 2 years/75,000km 2 years/unlimited kilometres 3 years/1 lakh kilometres

*Ex-showroom, Delhi

Kia Motors India has priced the Sonet quite competitively. The introductory prices see the Sonet petrol-manual undercut five out of six compact SUVs currently on sale – only the entry-level Venue is more affordable. However, the top-end petrol Sonet GTX+ – in manual and automatic form – is priced quite a bit above the competition; the top-spec EcoSport, which is the second most expensive manual sub-four-metreSUV, costs Rs 77,000 less. Top-spec Sonet automatic prices are also Rs 19,000 more than the Tata Nexon AMT.

For now, the Sonet is the most affordable diesel compact SUV. In fact, as Sonet diesel and turbo-petrol prices are near-identical – something that’s never been seen before in this segment – Kia’s compact SUV comes across as well-priced; especially in lower-spec automatic form. The top-spec variants boast a long list of equipment, but their prices do encroach into the mid-size SUV segment.

Toyota has adopted the same pricing strategy for the Urban Cruiser asthe one it used for the Glanza. The entry-level Urban Cruiser variant is equivalent in features to the mid-spec Vitara Brezza and costs just Rs 5,000 more. Even the Urban Cruiser automatic prices are just Rs 5,000-10,000 more than the respective Maruti Vitara Brezza variants.

The Toyota Urban Cruiser has the edge over the Maruti in terms of the standard warranty period, but both Korean brands better that.

On paper, the Kia Sonet seems to have what it takes to become the sales champion of the segment. The Toyota Urban Cruiser also seems to have a lot to offer. Only time will tell if this holds true.

Also see:

Toyota Urban Cruiser deliveries to start later this month

Kia Sonet review, test drive

Kia Sonet

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