Busy Korean bees.
Kia has brought quite the spread to the Geneva motor show, making full use of the venue to unveil no less than three new cars to the world. The Ceed (and Ceed Sportwagon) and Rio GT-Line have all been given their time to shine, so we take a look at the entrance and see what’s what.
We’ll start with the big one: The Ceed. The Ceed to Europeans is actually the Cerato Hatch to us, and the Ceed lands in Geneva in elongated Sportwagon guise to feed that European demand for estate cars. The front half of the car is identical to the Ceed hatch that we saw in February and the new Cerato that we saw earlier still, while the rear end carries more than a passing resemblance to the bigger Optima Sportwagon.
There’s no less than 600L on offer in the back, which is rather considerable. That’s 600L with the seats up, mind, making it bigger than eve the BMW 5-Series Touring, amazingly. Kia’s clearly played a good game with packaging here, and it shows. And if that 600L isn’t enough for you, you’ll soon find that the rear seats fold 40:20:40 when you need more room.
Everything fore of that is familiar to both the Cerato and the Ceed, with a dashboard designed to emphasise the width of the car, that also claims that there’s been some inspiration from the Stinger halo saloon (point it out for us Kia, because we can’t see it). There’s still a freestanding infotainment screen sitting atop the centre stack, and the Ceed Sportwagon comes with the full gamut of advanced driver assistance (ADAS) systems as the Cerato saloon like automatic high-beam, collision warning, lane-keeping aid, and driver drowsiness monitor. Optional kit includes blind-spot monitoring, intelligent cruise control, rear cross-traffic alert, and forward-collision avoidance.
Under the bonnet you can find an efficient 1.4-litre turbo petrol mill, or a 1.0-litre turbo petrol mill, or a 1.6-litre turbodiesel motor. However, expect none of these here. Or the naturally-aspirated Atkinson-cycle 2.0-litre either. Should just be the same mill that we already get in the Cerato, with 112kW and 192Nm. It has at least been confirmed that the Cerato will get a GT model (most likely with a 1.6-litre turbo petrol with 150kW/265Nm), and if we’re lucky, we might get a Cerato GT hatch too.
Speaking of sporty hatchbacks, the Rio has also been given the sporty treatment in Geneva, debuting in GT-Line guise there. The Rio GT-Line gains sportier touches like a gloss-black grille outlined in chrome, 17-inch alloys, and the ‘ice cube’ LED foglights we’ve seen before on sportier Kias. Further, there’s chrome window trim, while the side-sills and spoiler are finished in gloss black.
The Rio’s GT-Line treatment isn’t limited to just the exterior either: The cabin receives a unique combination of (fake) leather and cloth upholstery, stitched together with grey thread, a flat-bottomed steering wheel, and metallic cabin trimmings with highlights in carbon-fibre (in appearance alone).
What we know for certain now is that the Cerato saloon will arrive on your shores by the middle of the year, and the Cerato hatch is due by year end. There’s no telling if the European Ceed we’re looking at here will indeed be the Cerato hatch we can expect. What is likely to arrive here at some point is the Rio GT-Line (given how we buy into tarted-up versions of anything), and hopefully that when it does get here, it’ll bring one of those turbo mills with it…