Kia Cee’d 1.6 T-GDi GT: Jack The Lad

The Cee’d 1.6 T-GDi GT is the car with which Kia are looking to establish their reputation for for producing a hot hatch that combines practically with speed including, as do most in the Kia range, a generous helping of standard equipment along the way.
 
With it’s 1591cc, turbocharged, Gamma direct injection Petrol engine, the Cee’d GT makes do with an extremely healthy 201bhp and 195 Ib/ft torque at 6000rpm and 1500-4500rpm respectively. Figures which, rather unsurprisingly, allow this hot Kia to achieve 0-60mph in 7.3s before running on to a top speed of 143mph which is more than enough in the world of ‘real life’ motoring.

Indeed it’s the flexibility of the engine that impresses most as it does the everyday and the mundane extremely well. Indeed, it can often be hard to remember that you’re actually driving a GT so competent is the experience out and about. This then is a car that will fly down the road when the conditions and mood dictate as once the all important GT button on the steering is pressed, the dials change, an electronic sound generator delivers a stunning and exciting engine note into the cabin and the Cee’d hunkers down, ready to put its power straight to the road. ‘Real life’ motoring performance is enhanced with peak torque now being available from 1500rpm rather than the 1750rpm of the preceding model which gives the GT superb all round acceleration figures of 37-60mph in fourth gear of 5.4s and from 50-75mph in fifth gear of 7.3s and all whilst delivering a claimed combined mpg of 38.2. Powerful and economical, a difficult trick to pull off. 

It’s an engine that provides the flexibility you need to drive around town, commute, take the children to school or swimming lessons and complete the weekly journey to the supermarket which is exactly how it should be in this day and age but those superb good looks promise a little bit more than the average. 

Working alongside the impressive engine performance is a chassis that has been engineered for success. With sports tuned suspension, all round disc brakes enlarged from 16″ to 17″ at the front and steering that allows you to place the GT exactly where you want it, this is truly a GT car to enjoy. On the other side of the same coin is the suspension performance provided by front suspension comprising of Independant Macpherson Strut with Coil Spring and Anti Roll Bar and rear suspension of Independant Multi Link and Trailing Arm Type with Anti Roll Bar, a combination of technology and engineering know how that allows the Cee’d to drive superbly. On your favourite road this means that the Kia is able to isolate you from the imperfections of the blacktop, providing a surprising level of comfort and find grip wherever it may be, meaning that you can feel exactly what the front wheels are doing at any one moment, especially useful as the GT launches itself through the next enticing set of bends. 

This is a car that encourages such behaviour, with its lithe and agile manners, generous levels of power and excellent brakes combining to provide a platform upon which you can express yourself freely. It’s a thoroughly modern expression of freedom.

Looks-wise, the Kia is a definite success, taking the standard 5 door Cee’d and turning it into a far more handsome and desirable model which lingers long in the memory. Keeping the practical features securely in place such as easy access and an excellent 380 litre boot, the Cee’d features body coloured bumpers, handles and mirrors, de-rigour privacy glass and distinctive signature LED rear tail lights and yet it’s the additional features that the GT offers that really help this particular Kia step up and spar with its rivals.

Also included on this Cee’d GT is Kia’s exterior pack, comprising, as it does, striking red brake calipers, black lower grill with red trim, dual exhausts, graphite chrome grill surround, black high gloss mesh, side sill mouldings and those stunning and unique ‘ice cube’ LED daytime running lights combine to present an aggressive and distinctive look that you can’t help but stop and stare.

Kia state that: the performance oriented exterior design is echoed inside the all black five seat cabin. The driver and front passenger are gripped by Recaro Sports seats adorned with GT and Recaro logos. Power adjustable lumbar support is fitted to both front seats. The upholstery is part suede and Part leather and there is red contrast stitching on the seats, steering wheel, gear shifter and door trims. The steering wheel also features an overstitched GT logo and there are stainless steel pedals with non slip rubber inserts. Before continuing to say: Kia’s familiar three dial sporty instrument layout is enhanced by a TFT LCD multi function high definition display which allows the driver to switch between analogue type or GT performance digital information. This is a very nice place to be.

Equipment wise the GT includes everything that you would expect with dual air conditioning, cruise control, Xenon automatic adaptive lights, rain sensing wipers, 7 inch navigation screen with Kia connected services featuring TomTom® and a reversing camera, reversing sensors, Bluetooth phone connectivity with music streaming and more. You certainly aren’t having to sacrifice comfort and convenience in the name of power and roadholding. An excellent job from Kia.

Overall, this is a deeply impressive car and one that really works alongside the underlying ‘real life’ motoring vibe of www.motormartin.com. It is comfortable, practical, well specified and more than powerful enough to provide excitement on the daily commute and trips further afield. And yet there’s that GT button that once pressed, gives this GT character and aggression aplenty and turns the car into a visceral experience worthy of the GT badge on the front grill.

Like it? I loved it and so will you.

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