Kia cee’d 2 1.6CRDi24 | 05 | 2012Scotcars rating

    New Kia cee'd raises the bar even further as Koreans take battle to the establishment


    In 2007, the Korean brand Kia was, if you pardon the pun, soul-less (geddit?) and frankly not many people knew much about them: who they were, what they did or how good their cars were (read our roadtest, and watch the video of the Kia Optima). It’s amazing how much can change in a short space of time and if you mention the name now, many people will certainly have heard of it. They may know something of the outstanding 7-year,100,000 mile warranty, and they’ll undoubtedly have seen many Kias on the streets in the form of the petite Picanto, the slightly larger Rio, the wacky Soul or the award-winning Sportage, which I reckon is still one of the best bargain basement SUVs on the market.

    But all of them are incidental to the car which is credited with starting the revolution, the quirkily-named cee’d. It was the first of the company’s European-designed, engineered and built cars to go on sale in the UK and it transformed the image of the company, selling 55,000 models along the way. Now the latest version is here and the company has done an exceptional job in creating a car which takes the brand to a new level: and they're brimming with confidence that the new cee’d will repeat the spectacular performance of its predecessor.

    On the Road

    Like the original model, the new car has been designed at Kia’s European HQ in Frankfurt in Germany alongside its sister model, the Hyundai i30. The general feeling though is that the Kia is a better car, with more stylish lines and is generally more impressive all round, with a quality interior and a very economical diesel engine.

    As you move up the range to Level 4, the amount of standard equipment is impressive, but even at the Level 2 of the test car you’ll find 16in alloys, cornering lights, LED daytime running lights, electric folding door mirrors, electric windows all round, cruise control with speed limiter and reversing sensors – and that’s only half-way up the range and on top of a comprehensive starter package which includes USB port and Bluetooth, steering wheel-mounted controls and hill-start.

    The 1.6 diesel has been tuned for economy, and as a result you do have to work it to get anything towards a performance drive. But these days, low CO2 and more miles to your gallon are a priority for the sort of people who’ll find the cee’d appealing.

    Comfort and Safety

    This is a sensible family car, so obviously a lot of attention has been paid to the needs of ma, pa and the weans, and that means loads of storage space and cubby holes. The boot is surprisingly spacious and larger than most of the competition, with a low-loading lip which helps access for bulky and heavy luggage. The bodyshell is stiffer than before and the Flex Steer function with Normal, Sport or Comfort settings which can be selected according to the road conditions or your personal preference is designed to make parking easier and the car more stable at higher speeds although it has attracted some criticism for being too sensitive.

    Should I Buy One?

    It does everything you could ask for and more. It feels well designed with superb build quality and that 7-year warranty gives you great confidence.

    Scots dealers open order books for new Kia cee'd

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    Alan Douglas

    Quick Stats
    Price OTR/As Tested £18,295 / £18,295
    Engine / Power: 1582cc turbodiesel / 126bhp
    How fast?: 0-60mph 11.5secs / Max 122mph
    How big/heavy?: L4310mm W1780mm H1470mm / Weight 1375g
    How thirsty/CO2?: 74.3mpg Combined / 100g/km CO2
    InsGP/Road tax: n/a/ Band A £0
    Alternatives: Hyundai i30; Chrysler Delta; Citroen C4; Peugeot 308

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