The passenger compartment of the Picanto remained stable in the frontal impact. Dummy readings indicated good protection of the knees, femurs and pelvis of both the driver and front passenger. Kia demonstrated that a similar level of protection would be provided for occupants of different sizes and to those sat in different positions. Most body regions were well protected in the side barrier test, with adequate protection of the chest. However, the rear door on the struck side opened during the test and the car was penalised. In the more severe side pole test, the door remained fully latched. Dummy readings of rib deflection indicated marginal protection of the chest. The seat and head restraint provided marginal protection against whiplash injuries in the event of a rear-end collision.
Forward movement of the 3 year dummy, sat in a forward-facing restraint, was not excessive and both the 3 year and the 18 month dummies were properly contained in the side impact test. The front passenger airbag can be disabled to allow a rearward-facing restraint to be used in that seating position and the Picanto provides clear information to the driver regarding the status of the airbag. A permanently attached label gives a clear warning of the dangers of using a rearward facing seat in the passenger seat without first disabling the airbag.
The bonnet was rated as poor or marginal in most areas likely to be struck by a pedestrian's head. Similarly, the front edge of the bonnet did not provide good protection for pedestrians' legs. Only the bumper scored maximum points, offering good protection for pedestrians in all areas tested.
Electronic stability control is available as an option on the Picanto. However, its sales as standard equipment are not expected to meet Euro NCAP's 2011 requirements and the system was not assessed. A seatbelt reminder is standard equipment for the driver, front passenger and rear seats.