Kia Ceed

June Neary is surprised by Kia's impressive family hatchback offering, the Ceed.




Will It Suit Me?

It wasn't long ago that a Kia was something you bought on price. You'd really rather have had something else but Kia did it for less. Not quite as smartly and effectively perhaps but you bought a Kia and you got the job done. When the second generation Ceed was launched in 2012, the market realised that it was time to start looking at this Korean brand in a different way. Here was a car that was at least as good as the Family Hatchback class favourites - Astras, Focus's and Meganes - but costed less to buy and to own. That's a proposition further improved by the third generation version we're looking at here and it's certainly one that works for me.

Scoring
Perfomance 70%
Handling 60%
Comfort 70%
Space 70%
Styling 60%
Build 70%
Value 80%
Equipment 80%
Economy 60%
Depreciation 70%
Insurance 70%



69%
Total
Kia Ceed

Practicalities

For someone like me who in the past has had some experience of some frankly rather poor South Korean products, the reality of climbing aboard this Kia comes as something of a shock. From the moment the doors thunk shut to the dawning that some of the interior finishes are class-leading, the Ceed has the capacity to surprise. Even the base-spec 1.0-litre T-GDI petrol variant carries the right stuff in its DNA. It's not flashy. It won't be the darling of the style set but it's a whole lot more car than you could imagine at this price point. There's plenty of space in the rear and I had no problem lumping child seats in and out - or with the weekly Tesco shop. The plastics seem pretty hard-wearing and the design seems as child-proof as it's possible to get at this price point.





Behind the Wheel

The earlier MK2 Ceed model was rather let down by its feeble, somewhat inefficient entry-level petrol engines but buyers of this MK3 version now get much better options. These include an updated version of Kia's popular 1.0-litre T-GDi engine, producing 118bhp. This revvy little unit is a big improvement and for me, seems economical enough to make opting for diesel power somewhat pointless unless you regularly cover a lot of miles. There's also a new 1.4-litre T-GDi power unit. Replacing the earlier 1.6-litre GDI unit, the new 'Kappa' 1.4-litre T-GDi powerplant produces 138bhp. In addition, this Ceed gets Kia's latest 'U3' diesel with 114bhp. Every engine is paired with a six-speed manual transmission, while the 1.4-litre T-GDi and 1.6-litre CRDi engines are also available with Kia's seven-speed double-clutch transmission.



Kia Ceed

Value For Money

No need for a crash course in Kia trim level nomenclature. The manufacturer has thoughtfully kept things simple by presenting buyers with a standard choice of Ceed 2 and Ceed 3 models and this design comes as a five-door hatchback or an Sportswagon estate. Prices start at around £18,500. Crucially, and as any Kia dealer will be at pains to remind you, all Ceeds come with Kia's excellent 7-year/100,000-mile warranty. Whichever Ceed you choose, you'd expect to find it decently equipped - it is - but the key change this time round is the addition of much more safety technology. In addition to the car's seven standard airbags, included kit runs to High Beam Assist, Driver Attention Warning, Lane Keeping Assist and Forward Collision Warning autonomous braking with Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist.




Could I Live With One?

Rather to my surprise, the answer is yes. Some of the other cars in the sector still feel slightly more sophisticated but the price saving and that achingly long warranty of this improved Ceed would more than make up for that. Here is a Kia that needs no apologies - a car that sells on quality as well as price. If you're buying a family hatch in this sector, it's an alternative you can't afford to ignore.



Kia Ceed


Kia Ceed

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