One of the reasons for the Seltos being the first choice for many aspiring buyers is the numerous engine and transmission options it has on offer. Kia has equipped the Seltos with three engine and four transmission options. This gives people a wider spectrum to choose from and thus have a car that fits well into their driving demands. We have listed below, the gearboxes on offer in the Kia Seltos and how it varies in driving dynamics.
This is the most widely equipped gearbox in most of the variants. It is the simplest and cheapest offering of this bunch and thus makes for a value for money option. This gearbox is equipped on the 1.5L NA petrol, 1.4L GDi and the 1.5L NA diesel engines. On the 1.4L GDi pot, this gearbox is equipped only in the GT Line variants.
It has short throws and can even impress enthusiasts. Talking of enthusiasm, the 1.4L GDI with a manual gearbox is a hoon to drive! It has a slight hiccup in starting from a standstill and so traffic situations can be tricky and the clutch is far too wide for a smooth experience. It is tiring to use the long clutch and Kia should look into this matter to improve the driving experience.
An interesting notion is that the same gearbox on the diesel powertrain is comparatively smoother and has shorter throws than the petrol variants. The clutch, however, has the same long travel but is a bit more light action. But this won’t be an issue as ample torque available at the lower rev-range means, less frequent gear changes.
This transmission is available only with the 1.5L diesel and it is the most sorted gearbox of this lot. The balance of performance and efficiency is spot on with this one and as it is a traditional torque converter, reliability will be a 100/100 for this one. It comes with a Sport mode as well which helps you slot it into its manual setting but paddle shifters would have made the experience much more involving.
There is no noticeable lag in acceleration and unlike the CVT, you will find this one easy to manoeuvre in tight traffics. It comes with a “crawl” function that helps you to crawl forward with the usage of just the brake pedal at speeds upto 7 kmph without any throttle response. The rev-limiter is tapped at 4500 RPM and this helps you to conserve fuel. Overtakes are also smooth as the gearbox automatically drops a gear or two depending on the throttle input.
This can be stated as the dullest gearbox of this lot as CVTs are known for their sluggishness. But Kia has a few tricks up its sleeves and with the level of work that has been put into this gearbox, we are convinced to take out words back as this is by far the smoothes of CVTs we have come across. The rubber band effect is there, no doubt, but it is well controlled to provide a smoother driving experience. The IVT is only available with the 1.5L NA petrol engine and reliability is not going to be an issue with this one.
Driving the IVT equipped variant is nothing noteworthy, but the advantage you have with it is that you can extract a few extra kilometres off a litre due to its toned-down nature.
This is the slickest gearbox of the lot and is tastefully equipped with the most powerful engine of the lot, the 1.4L Turbo petrol. This gearbox setup also allows for optimum usage of the drive and terrain modes available along with features like hill-hold, ESP and brake assist.
The dual-clutch setup helps in an instantaneous shifting of gears and thus conserving power and torque through the gears. There is no lag whatsoever and upshifts are lighting fast which helps in quick sprint runs. Downshifts are not so fast but cannot be complained upon. There are certain issues, however, with the DCT setup used in the Seltos as it tends to heat up and there are instances of owners sharing situations of having to cool down the gearbox in between travels.
Thus, reliability is a weak point for the DCT and we would recommend you to go for the extended warranty to avoid a hefty bill! But the engine gearbox duo is pure joy to drive and its thrill factor has convinced us to take the risk here.