It is expected that Kia will introduce a pure manual gearbox for the 1.0-litre turbocharged engine, alongside the existing options of 7-speed DCT and a iMT unit.
Yesterday, Kia Motors just rolled out one of the most anticipated vehicles of the second half of 2020, Kia Sonet. The new compact SUV is launched at the introductory price of Rs 6.71 lakh.
Kia Sonet is expected to come with a manual gearbox for its turbocharged engine
From the beginning, Kia offers a wide range of powertrain options for the customers. Out of the three available engines on the Sonet, the 1.0-litre turbocharged engine is the most powerful unit with a maximum torque of 118 BHP and a peak torque of 172 Nm.
Unfortunately, despite the various powertrain options Kia Sonet can offer, this turbocharged petrol engine, in particular, is missing out on the manual gearbox. In the beginning, Kia only offers this engine with automatic transmission options only. These options include a standard 7-speed DCT and an optional iMT (Intelligent Manual Transmission).
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Even though the Kia Sonet still attracts a lot of attention and garners a huge amount of bookings, the absence of manual gearbox for the most performance-oriented engine still bothers some true car enthusiasts. However, according to recent reports, Kia Motors might introduce a manual gearbox for this turbocharged engine. Recently Hyundai Venue is offering a 6-speed manual unit for its turbo engine. It is likely that Kia will bring this engine to the Kia Sonet.
Kia Sonet's turbocharged engine is now available with DCT and a iMT unit
The G 1.0 T-GDi petrol engine is also the only unit of the range to come with the newly-introduced iMT gearbox. This gearbox is touted as the transmission of the future. This gearbox option is currently available on the Hyundai Venue as well. The iMT gearbox is essentially a manual gearbox but without the clutch. This type of transmission gearbox offers the convenience of a clutchless drive while retaining the fun of a manual transmission.
Despite the supposedly winning combination of a manual gearbox and clutchless technology, some enthusiasts do not buy this novel concept. It leads to Kia reconsider providing a pure manual gearbox for the 1.0-litre petrol engine if they observe steady demand for this option.
On the other hand, in contrary to Kia’s approach, Hyundai Motors recently confirmed its attention to discontinue the manual option of the Hyundai Venue in the US market. If launched, the manual-turbocharged petrol powertrain will cost around Rs 20,000 less than the iMT counterpart.