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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Kia Clavis shows first skin as new spy images emerge

Korean brand's new mid-range model will become a reality at the end of the year before going on-sale in 2025.

Announced towards the end of last year as becoming a reality, reportedly by year-end, the incoming Kia Clavis small SUV has been spied undergoing testing in South Korea ahead of its world debut.

Small but not Exter small

Known internally as the AY, the Clavis will be positioned between the Sonet and Seltos in Kia’s crossover/SUV range, but in a different capacity to sister brand Hyundai, whose loosely comparative Exter serves as its entry-level offering.

Set to go on-sale in early 2025, the Clavis will be produced in its home country and in India, where it will exceed the sub-four metre regulations the Sonet adheres to.

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Based on the images taken by the shorts_car Instagram page of the production model, the Clavis not only appears bigger and longer than the Sonet, but more upright with a design similar to most Japanese kei cars, as well as Kia’s own Soul.

The latter having reportedly played a role in the Clavis’ styling, the heavily disguised wrapping fails to hide the newcomer’s front design approach as drawing visual hints from the all-electric EV9, while the rear has elements from the Hyundai Casper that sits below the Exter.

Inside and up front

Providing seating for five with a reported boot space of 400-litres without the rear seats folded flat, the interior is expected to incorporate traits from the newly facelift Sonet, namely the dual 10.25-inch infotainment system and instrument cluster on higher-end models, plus a wireless smartphone charger and panoramic sunroof to name a few.

Kia Clavis first spy images emerge
Newly facelift Kia Sonet will still be the automaker’s smallest SUV. Image: Kia India

Up front, the Clavis is anticipated to derive motivation from petrol and mild-hybrid combustion engines, along with a fully electric powertrain still unknown in capacity, range and output.

Transmissions likely to be offered, on the combustion models, could comprise a five-and-six-speed manual, the clutchless six-speed Intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT), a six-speed torque converter automatic, a seven-speed dual-clutch, a CVT and a five-speed automated manual (AMT).

Kia Clavis first spy images emerge
Seltos will sit above the Clavis in Kia’s SUV/crossover range. Image: Kia India

Regardless of the drivetrain, the Clavis will send its amount of twist to the front wheels only.

Clock is ticking

Very much still in the testing phase as evident by the spy images, more details of the Clavis is expected to emerge within the next months heading up to its eventual world reveal.

Additional information from autocarindia.com.

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