What’s a Stonic? Well, Kia says that it’s a portmanteau word, meant to mix and match the vocal elements of speedy and tonic. Which sounds just a mite daft to these ears, but if Volkswagen can get away with combining Tiger and Iguana for Tiguan, well, anything goes.
Aside from the phonic jumble, a Stonic is Kia’s new compact crossover, a rival to the Renault Captur and Nissan Juke. It’s easy to be a bit sniffy about cars from this class, mostly because they tend to be a bit style over substance; pricier than their supermini base and no better at family duties thanks to small rear seats and small boots. Yet the so-called B-SUV market already accounts for 1.1 million sales across Europe, and it’s expected to be the biggest segment of the car market by 2020.