2021 Kia Seltos

Original MSRP Range
$21,990 - $27,990
Available Style(s)
Sport Utility
MPG
25 - 29 MPG City / 30 - 34 MPG Hwy
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2021 Kia Seltos

What We Like

  • Choice of two engines
  • AWD available on all but one model
  • Excellent safety suite on most models
  • Adult-friendly rear seat
  • Excellent warranty

What We Don't

  • LX model lacks safety suite
  • Pricier than the Hyundai Kona or Nissan Kicks

Ratings

Expert Rating

4.8/ 5

Consumer Rating

4.3/ 5

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Overview

What's New in the 2021 Kia Seltos?

The Kia Seltos is a completely new subcompact SUV for 2021. See the 2021 Kia Seltos models for sale near you

 

Which Seltos is the Best?

The all-new Kia Seltos has arrived -- a roomy, attractive and fuel-efficient subcompact SUV that's ready to take on proven players like the Honda HR-V and the Toyota C-HR. We recommend skipping the entry-level Kia Seltos LX, the only model without automatic emergency braking, and opting for a Seltos S or above. These Seltos models have an impressive safety suite that includes automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and a driver-attention monitor. And, as with all Kias, each comes with an outstanding 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. Find a Kia Seltos for sale

How Much Does a 2021 Kia Seltos Cost?

The 2021 Seltos comes in five grades: LX, S, EX, S Turbo and SX Turbo. AWD is standard on all Seltos models except the S. It's a $1,500 option on the S, and it's grouped with heated front seats.

Interestingly, the Seltos LX and the Seltos S each start at $21,190, plus a destination fee of $1,120. The Seltos LX comes standard with the 2.0-liter engine, a CVT and AWD. The LX, fitted with a black grille, also has an 8-in touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, keyless entry and 17-in alloy wheels. One thing it doesn't have, though, is automatic emergency braking.

If you want that significant safety technology, it's standard on the Seltos S and above. In addition to automatic emergency braking, the S trim has lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and a driver-attention monitor. Other notable Seltos S hardware features include roof rails, LED daytime running lights, a sliding center-console armrest and a leather-covered steering wheel.

The Seltos EX ($25,290), the top 2.0-liter model with AWD, ups the content level with a push-button start, a power driver's seat, a sunroof, a synthetic leather interior trim, blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, a wireless phone charger, rear air ducts and front and rear USB charging ports.

Next up are the Seltos S Turbo ($25,490) and Seltos SX Turbo ($27,890), two AWD models equipped with the turbocharged 1.6-liter engine and the 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The Seltos S Turbo is equipped much like the EX, but with 18-in alloy wheels. The Seltos SX Turbo builds on that with adaptive cruise control with stop and go, an electronic parking brake, an 8-speaker Bose audio system, voice-command navigation, a 10.25-in touchscreen, XM satellite radio and Kia's Highway Driving Assist feature. When cruise control is engaged, Highway Driving Assist enables the Seltos to adjust its speed based on the vehicle ahead of it and the posted speed limit.

Seltos models equipped with AWD have a multilink independent rear suspension, whereas FWD models are fitted with a semi-independent torsion beam rear axle. Also notable: An attractive 2-tone roof is a no-cost option on the S, the S Turbo and the SX Turbo trims, and all Seltos models come with a superb warranty that provides 10 years or 100,000 miles of powertrain protection.

Seltos Trims

Sport UtilityOriginal MSRP / PriceEngineHorsepowerCity MPG / Hwy MPGTransmissionDrive
Seltos EX IVT AWD$25,390 / $24,5024 Cylinder14627 / 31Continuously Variable AutomaticAWD4WD
Seltos LX IVT AWD$21,990 / $21,2214 Cylinder14627 / 31Continuously Variable AutomaticAWD4WD
Seltos S DCT AWD$25,590 / $24,6954 Cylinder Turbo / 4 Cylinder17525 / 30Continuously Variable Automatic / 7-Speed Shiftable AutomaticFWD / AWD4WD
Seltos S IVT AWD$23,590 / $22,7654 Cylinder Turbo / 4 Cylinder14627 / 31Continuously Variable Automatic / 7-Speed Shiftable AutomaticFWD / AWD4WD
Seltos S IVT FWD$21,990 / $21,2214 Cylinder Turbo / 4 Cylinder14629 / 34Continuously Variable Automatic / 7-Speed Shiftable AutomaticFWD / AWD4WD
Seltos SX DCT AWD$27,990 / $26,7314 Cylinder Turbo17525 / 307-Speed Shiftable AutomaticAWD4WD

Is the 2021 Kia Seltos a Safe Car?

Apart from the entry-level LX, all 2021 Kia Seltos models are equipped with an impressive standard safety suite that includes automatic emergency braking, a potential lifesaver that warns drivers of impending collisions and automatically applies full brake pressure when needed to prevent or lessen the impact of a collision with a vehicle or a pedestrian.

Also standard on all but the base Seltos LX is lane-keeping assist, which warns the driver when the SUV drifts out of its lane. If the driver doesn't respond, the system automatically makes the necessary steering corrections to remedy the situation.

On the EX trim and above, the 2021 Kia Seltos has one of our favorite safety advances: a blind spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert. During lane changes, this system lets the driver know if there's a vehicle in the Seltos' blind spot, and it also lets the driver know if there are any cross-traffic issues when you're backing out of, say, a parking stall at the grocery store.

Although the entry-level Seltos LX doesn't have automatic emergency braking, it still has its fair share of safety technology. This includes six standard airbags, a rollover sensor and hill-start assist, which keeps the Seltos from rolling backward down a hill once the brakes have been applied for 1.5 seconds.

5 Year Cost to Own

$36,011 ($0.48 per mile)

5-Year Cost to Own includes out of pocket expenses like fuel and insurance, plus the cars loss in value over time (depreciation)See Detailed Cost to Own
Warranty

Original Warranty

Basic5 Years/60,000 Miles
Drivetrain10 Years/100,000 Miles
Corrosion5 Years/100,000 Miles
Roadside Assistance5 Years/60,000 Miles

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction
  • 4-Wheel Anti-Lock Brakes
  • Brake Assist
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Traction Control
Passenger Restraint
  • Child Safety Locks
  • Driver Air Bag
  • Passenger Air Bag
  • Rear Side Curtain Airbags
  • Side Air Bag
  • Side Head Air Bag
Road Visibility
  • Daytime Running Lights
  • Fog Lights
Accident Prevention
  • Bluetooth, Hands-Free
  • Rearview Camera
Security
  • Alarm System
  • Vehicle Anti-Theft System
Packages
  • Paint Protection Pkg

Competition

2021 Kia Seltos vs the competition

2020 Honda HR-V -- Although it's getting a bit long in the tooth, the Honda HR-V continues to impress us with its easy everyday manners and super roomy back seat.

2020 Nissan Kicks -- The affordable Nissan Kicks has a lively spirit, lots of cargo room and excellent fuel economy, but it's only available with FWD.

2020 Hyundai Kona -- Even the base Hyundai Kona has automatic emergency braking, but its back seat is cramped compared to the one in the Seltos.

Used Toyota RAV4 -- Though the RAV4 is bigger than the Seltos, it serves about the same purpose. A used Toyota RAV4 with less than 30,000 miles can be had for about $20,000, depending on which version you get. Given Toyota's well-known reliability, a used car might make sense here. However, you won't be getting Kia's 100,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Kia Seltos News & Reviews

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