2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line Review
Price & Equipment: 8
Performance & Economy: 7.5
Ride & Handling: 8.5
Interior & Practicality: 7.5
Service & Warranty: 8.5
What we like:
  • Grunty and throaty little turbocharged three-cylinder engine
  • Fun to drive with a good ride quality
  • Spacious interior for its size
What we don't like:
  • Despite being a top-spec model, it still lacks some features
  • Lacking power compared to rivals
  • Short service intervals add to service cost
8DiscoverAuto Rating:

A popular offering in Australia, the 2024 Kia Stonic range has been cut down to a single model for the 2024 model year. Now offering just the formerly top-spec GT-Line, has the culling of the slow and thirsty S and Sport models ultimately added to the Stonic range? We definitely think so.

Competing in the small SUV segment, the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line competes with a number of competitors, including the Mazda CX-3, Toyota Yaris Cross, Volkswagen T-Cross, Skoda Kamiq, Peugeot 2008 Allure and the Renault Captur Life. What separates the Stonic from the segment?

How much does the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line cost to buy?

The 2024 Kia Stonic range has dwindled down to a singular model, which is what we’re testing here. The Stonic GT-Line is priced from $30,790 plus on road costs. Gone are the entry level S and Sport models temporarily thanks to their 1.4-litre petrol engine being shelved globally and left is this top-spec model. The S and Sport will reportedly return in Australia sometime later in 2024 with the GT-Line’s drivetrain.

Stonic GT-Line standard equipment:

  • 17-inch alloy wheels with a space-saver spare tyre
  • Automatic dusk-sensing LED headlights with LED daytime running lights
  • LED front fog lights
  • Rain-sensing wipers
  • Heated and electric-folding mirrors
  • Keyless entry with push-button start
  • Six-way manually adjustable powered driver’s seat
  • Faux leather and cloth upholstery
  • Single-zone automatic climate control
  • Power windows with auto up/down for the driver
  • 8.0-inch touchscreen
  • Wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • AM/FM/DAB+ digital radio
  • Satellite navigation
  • Bluetooth phone and audio streaming
  • Leather steering wheel and gearknob
  • Six-speaker sound system
  • Cruise control with a speed limiter
  • One USB-A port in the front cabin and one in the rear
  • 12V socket
  • Trip computer
  • Sunglasses holder
  • Sunroof

The Stonic received a five-star ANCAP safety rating in 2017 based off the related Rio with a score of 35.52 out of 37 based on older testing protocols. Safety equipment includes:

  • Six airbags
  • Auto emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection
  • Lane departure warning with lane keep assist
  • Lane trace assist
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Reversing camera
  • Hill holder
  • Driver attention detection
  • Auto-dimming rear mirror

Stonic GT-Line colour range:

  • Clear White
  • Aurora Black ($520)
  • Sporty Blue ($520)
  • Astro Grey ($520)
  • Signal Red ($520)
  • Snow White Pearl ($520)
  • Sparkling Silver ($520)
  • Honey Bee ($520 – fitted to our test car)

For the segment, we believe that the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line’s equipment list to be extensive enough, but it should feature blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert as standard – like the recently-facelifted Picanto, we expect to see it added later this year – and radar cruise control would make it more appealing to buyers.

We believe that the most direct rivals to the Kia Stonic GT-Line are the $30,990 plus on-road costs Volkswagen T-Cross Life and the $33,000 +ORC Renault Captur Life. Both of these cars also use turbocharged drivetrains with dual-clutch transmissions for excellent low-end torque and good fuel efficiency. The Volkswagen costs $200 more than the Kia, but misses out on equipment like keyless entry, automatic climate control, a sunroof, satellite navigation and faux leather trim but does feature front parking sensors, a wireless phone charger and automatic braking in reverse over the Kia.

What’s under the bonnet of the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line?

Unlike the previous standard issue Kia Stonic’s 1.4-litre engine the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line has a punchy little 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine, which produces 74kW of power (from 4,500rpm to 6,000rpm) and 172Nm of torque (from 1,500rpm to 4,000rpm), which is less than the 85kW/200Nm engine of the same capacity in the T-Cross and less than the 113kW/270Nm 1.3-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine in the Captur. Like the T-Cross and Captur, the Kia’s engine is paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The engine is a characterful little unit that thrums away when accelerating. It is also rather spritely which is not what you may think initially when looking at the power figure. There is a good dose of low end torque and the engine produces good power in the middle of the rev range. It is more than enough go for those mostly in the city of suburbia. On the motorway, the power is adequate with enough grunt to overtake but the 88kW mild-hybrid set up offered in Europe would be better still.

Being a dual-clutch automatic transmission, you would think that the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line would be a little clunky but refreshingly, the transmission is quite well suited to the engine. There is very little hesitation starting from a standstill and once on the move, it shifts through the gears promptly. We would love for the Stonic to have paddle shifters – or even a manual gearbox, like in Europe – to add to the experience, but alas, the manual shift ability from the gear selector will do.

The claimed average fuel consumption for the Stonic GT-Line is 5.4L/100km with CO2 emissions of 125g/km, which is good for a small SUV – the same consumption rating as the T-Cross and 1.2L/100km less than the larger-engined Captur. Our time spent behind the wheel of the Stonic – with mostly urban driving but some motorway – saw an average figure of 6.8L/100km, which we were impressed with. Unlike its European competitors, the Stonic can run on 91RON fuel and has a 45-litre fuel tank.

Does the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line handle well?

Using the same platform as the recently culled Kia Rio hatchback, the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line drives quite nicely. The ride quality is a particular highlight as it isn’t too firm, yet it’s got great body control and is quite agile too. The steering isn’t the last word in feel, but it’s well weighted and the handling is quite fun as well, especially with the 1.0-litre engine. Despite not being European like the T-Cross and the Captur, the Stonic feels planted on the road and has very mature driving characteristics.

Helping the driving experience further is good visibility, while the road noise levels are lower than you might expect as well. We also quite like Kia’s tuning of its active safety systems and how easy they are to disable if you so desire – the lane keep assist, for example, does a good job of keeping you in your lane above 60km/h but if you don’t want it, just hold the button on the steering wheel and it turns off. We would like to see features like blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert added, however.

What’s on the inside of the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line?

While the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line is the smallest and cheapest SUV in the local Kia lineup, the cabin is pretty well equipped and features plenty of niceties. As you’d expect from a Kia, the Stonic’s cabin is well screwed together and feels built to last but the materials aren’t great with barely any soft touch panels. The switchgear in the T-Cross definitely feels higher quality and there is a more liberal use of soft touch materials in the front cabin in the Captur.

The Stonic’s cabin features reasonably sized door bins with a few layers of storage, an uncovered tray in the centre console, a sliding centre console and a large glovebox. The Volkswagen T-Cross does have more storage options and more interior room as well.

Centre of the Stonic GT-Line’s cabin is an 8.0-inch touchscreen with wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The software is identical to a lot of older Kia models with easy to use functionality and a good use of colours. The reversing camera in the Stonic is far grainier than what’s used in the Seltos and Sportage though, and needs an upgrade. The six-speaker sound system is reasonable too, though hardly anything special. Oddly enough, the previous lower Stonic grades had wireless smartphone mirroring but because the Stonic GT-Line has the system with satellite navigation, it misses out on this, which we think is a big oversight.

The seats in the 2024 Kia Stonic are quite comfortable and while they don’t have much adjustment to them, we did find them better than those used in many other small SUVs. The leather steering wheel in the Stonic GT-Line is an item worth mentioning as it feels great in the hand and adds to the sporty nature of this small SUV.

The rear seat of the Stonic is reasonably spacious for the class, though the T-Cross is roomier still. Six-footers will fit fine, but keep it to two instead of three for maximum comfort and longer journeys are discouraged. It also features one map pocket, door pockets and a singular USB-A socket but that’s it – no arm rest, air vents (which the Captur has) or second map pocket.

The boot of the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line is easy to open thanks to a light tailgate and measures a healthy 332-litres with the seats up and 1,132L with the seats folded – the T-Cross and Captur are larger, however, at 385L/1,281L and 422L and 1,275L respectively. There are a few boot features like side storage and some hooks, while a space saver spare wheel lies underneath the boot floor. The boot floor is a long way down from the boot opening, however, and because Australia is denied the dual-level boot floor option, a big gap between the seats and boot floor exists when the rear seats are folded.

What warranty covers the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line?

Being a new Kia, the Stonic is covered by a seven-year/unlimited kilometre warranty. Roadside assistance is offered for a single year upfront, but at every scheduled service through a Kia dealership, a further 12 months is added for up to eight years in total. The Stonic’s warranty is longer than both Volkswagen’s (five years with 12 months of roadside assistance that’s extended by 12 months with each dealer service) and Renault’s (also five years with five years of roadside assistance). Servicing the 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line occurs every 12 months or 10,000km, whichever comes first, and the cost to service the Stonic over the span of five years or 50,000km is $2,173 ($435 per service), which is cheaper than both the Volkswagen and Renault.

In comparison, the T-Cross costs $3,080 ($616 per service) over five years/75,000km (buyers can choose a service plan for the same duration for $2,450 or $490 per service) and the Captur costs $2,385 ($477 per service) respectively to service over the same five years but that’s to a 150,000km thanks to the Captur’s huge 30,000km service intervals.

Should I buy a 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line?

While we are saddened by the decline of the hatchback we do like that there is still some fun to be had in small SUVs. The 2024 Kia Stonic GT-Line proves this to a tee as it is fun to drive, has a great little engine, handles well and is handsome. We also like how the Stonic feels trendy and up to date on the inside, the faux leather feels nice and the infotainment system is intuitive.

Would we buy the Kia Stonic GT-Line over the likes of the Volkswagen T-Cross and Renault Captur? We believe we would. The reasons for that are that it is less expensive to service, it’s better equipped, it has a better aftersales package and in our opinion, looks nicer than the competition. We do concede that the service intervals are a little short, it’s down on power compared to rivals, it’s not quite as practical and it should have extra equipment but we quite like the Kia Stonic GT-Line here at DiscoverAuto and think it should definitely be on your test drive list.

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