Kia has released exterior images of its new, 4th-generation Carnival – or Grand Sedona, as it’s known in South Africa. The people-mover follows hot on the heels of its new Sportage sibling and the models are likely to share several fascia design elements.
Kia updated and revised its current Grand Sedona line-up in South Africa at the end of 2018 and we reviewed the 2.2 CRDi SXL derivative in April 2019. Although the Grand Sedona is a less fashionable conventional MPV – or Grand Utility Vehicle, as the company calls it – compared with the bakkie-based 7-seater Adventure SUVs that dominate the family vehicle market, it’s markedly more refined and luxurious than those products, but also more accomplished and family-friendly than most commercial vehicle-based buses… Given its extended wheelbase, we believe that the new Grand Sedona is probably based on Hyundai Kia's new N3 platform.
Kia has applied lashings of machined- and chrome-look trim to the new Grand Sedona. Its bumper is very SUV-like.
As is the case with the new Sorento, the next-gen Grand Sedona features a new “tiger face” characterised by what Kia’s designers call “symphonic architecture” – in which the chrome-look diamond-patterned grille and lighting elements create a single, expansive design cue. In the case of the newcomer, it’s topped by a pair of trim strips that flow into the shoulder lines that extend along the flanks to the tail-lamp clusters. What's more, a pair of distinct bonnet creases sprouts from the castellated top edge of the “tiger nose”.
So, which lights do what? The newcomer’s headlamps are integrated into the corners of the tiger-nose grille, with the low-beam lamps sitting separately at the outer edges of the “tiger face”. Between them, the “bent lightning bolt” LED daytime running lights wrap around the indicator lamps, then merge with the grille’s lower chrome border. Meanwhile, the Grand Sedona’s SUV-inspired lower bumper and air intake are adorned with generous helpings of chrome-look trim and finished with a black apron.
The C-pillars feature reverse L-shaped chrome fins, the lower ends of which effectively wrap the Kia's tailgate.
Compared with its predecessor, the newcomer has a longer wheelbase (as previously mentioned), bolder wheel arches and a shorter front overhang, with the bases of the A-pillars moved backwards to create a more elongated bonnet. Note how the A- and B-pillars are blacked-out while each of the new C-pillars features an eye-catching chrome fin, which wraps beneath the tapered rear windows and extends towards the tailgate. It’s finished with a subtle diamond pattern which is said to be reflected on the model's interior.
Kia hasn’t released images of the new Grand Sedona's interior yet, but if the cabin of the new Sorento is anything to go by, the newcomer is bound to feature a melange of leather trim, metallic accents and embossed wood-effect surfaces, as well as “contemporary geometric details” such as ornate rectangular door handles and vertically-stacked air-vent pods. On top-spec versions, a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system is most likely to be flanked (and complemented) by a 12.3-inch high-resolution digital instrument cluster and we assume those units will be customisable and feature extended features/Apple CarPlay/Android Auto capability respectively.
The luxurious interior of the recently-revealed Sorento offers an insight into what the Grand Sedona's cockpit will look like.
Finally, at the rear, the Grand Sedona features a full-width light bar, which includes slim combination tail lamps that echo the DRL signature at the front of the vehicle, Kia says. Above the light bar is a chrome line, which starts from the base of the new signature C-pillar and wraps around the base of the rear screen. Highlight lines extend across the tailgate to raise the visual centre of the rear of the car and, to echo the SUV-inspired front bumper, the newcomer’s rear apron features a metallic skid plate.
These images show the newcomer in Korean spec; it will go on sale in its domestic market “later in the 3rd quarter of 2020, with global sales in many of Kia’s markets to follow thereafter”. Kia Motors SA says that it plans to introduce the new Grand Sedona in South Africa in 2021; we'll bring you more local info as soon as it becomes available.