Kia Motors South Africa has announced the launch of its new Picanto Runner, a tiny “urban delivery vehicle” aimed to small businesses.

Like Hyundai’s Grand i10 Cargo, the Picanto Runner ditches the standard city hatch’s rear bench to create a flat loading area. The Korean firm says it has added “sturdy” metal cargo dividers, while the rear glass has been tinted.

Kia claims the new Picanto Runner offers “approximately 820 litres” of space, with a payload of up to 350 kg.

Based on the entry-level Start model, the Picanto Runner is powered by the firm’s naturally aspirated 1,0-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine, delivering 49 kW and 95 N.m to the front axle via a five-speed manual transmission.

Standard features include dual front airbags, central locking, ABS, air-conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity and an audio system (with a USB port). A five-year/unlimited kilometre warranty is included as standard, along with a two-year/30 000 km service plan.

The price? The Picanto Runner will cost you R198 995.

“When you consider the rise of e-commerce, small businesses and services-on-demand, especially under the ‘new normal’ brought about by the global COVID-19 pandemic, there is a clear need for a compact delivery vehicle that can deliver goods practically, quickly and at a more manageable cost,” said Stephen Crosse, sales director at Kia Motors SA.

“The Kia Picanto Runner has been created to be a safe and comfortable urban business partner. As such, we have paid equal attention to capability, efficiency, comfort and running costs.”