1100km on one tank of diesel? Kia Seltos shows fuel pumps the proverbial middle finger

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2020 Kia Seltos (MotorPress
2020 Kia Seltos (MotorPress

• The Kia Seltos CRDI recently undertook a journey from Johannesburg to Cape Town.

• The goal: See how much distance can be covered before the fuel tank runs dry.

• The Seltos covered more than 1100km on a single tank of diesel.

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Adventurer and presenter of the local television show, Wild in SA, Tumelo Maketekete, recently journeyed from Johannesburg to Cape Town in the diesel-powered Kia Seltos. Dubbed the 'Epic Economy Drive', Maketekete drove the Seltos as he would have done under normal circumstances. This was not your average economy drive, and the presenter took on the 'Joe Soap' challenge by sticking to the speed limit, overtake as per usual, and having the air conditioning on full blast.

Maketekete filled the Seltos' tank up in Johannesburg and set about the journey to Cape Town. The goal: To see how much distance he could cover before the tank is empty.

Maketekete said: "By the time we reached Bloemfontein, at about 380km, the fuel gauge had not budged. We had quite a bit of road traffic, so it wasn't just one smooth drive, and it was unbelievably hot! So definitely not perfect test conditions for fuel consumption, but definitely perfect test conditions for local drivers, which is what we were trying to show."

Tumelo Maketekete,kia,seltos
Tumelo Maketekete (Wild in SA / Facebook)

Entry-level diesel

For the Epic Economy Drive, Tumelo was in a Seltos 1.5 CRDI EX, which is the entry-level version with a six-speed manual gearbox. The 1.5-litre diesel engine delivers 86kW and 250Nm of torque. 

Maketekete adds: "Once in the Karoo, our quest for minimal fuel use was put to the test. Not only was it boiling hot, but we were battered by some proper crosswinds and headwinds for quite a while. Which is exactly why we love doing local tests such as these because we can give our audience a much more realistic view of how cars perform on South African roads."

READ: Free fuel? Now that's a deal! Kia adds attractive incentive to every Picanto purchase in SA

At around 1078km into the trip, the Seltos CRDI showed it had a range of about 60km to go. Luckily, the team was only about 30km from Laingsburg, so they weren't too worried about running out of fuel in the middle of nowhere. 

In the end, and to avoid damaging the engine, Maketekete reached Laingsburg just short of running the tank dry. Following the final calculations, the results were astounding: the Kia Seltos CRDI achieved a fantastic 4.37-litres/100km. This is a brilliant result, especially considering that no special 'fuel-saving' measures were used - it was just a normal drive.

And if you were wondering, it would be another 262km to Cape Town International Airport from Laingsburg. Almost, Tumelo, almost.

Compiled by: Charlen Raymond

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