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Kia cee’d GT: The Korea car maker's first sporty model

By Roger St. Pierre

Over the years, Korean car makers Kia have created a commendably rounded range of cars. Providing something for everyone seems to have been the aim.

There was something missing though because until recently they had never offered us a genuinely sporty model.

Now that’s changed with the svelte cee’d GT, a low-slung five-door, and its three-door pro_see’d GT coupé sister. There is a choice of two trim levels ­– GT and GT Tech.

Powering for both comes from a turbocharged version of the company’s Gamma 1.6-litre direct injection petrol engine, diving through a slick six-speed gearbox with ideally placed ratios for scintillating performance.

That means a 7.4 seconds time for the 0-60 mph sprint and a far from pedestrian 143 mph top speed.

In both its forms the GT, is attractive and purposeful, both inside and out, if not as radically styled as some of its rivals.

The combination of a relatively small capacity engine, direct fuel injection and exhaust driven turbo-charging helps cut emissions and enables a 38.3 mpg combined cycle fuel consumption figure to be attained.

Hip-hugging Recaro front seats give an instant cue to the type of driver the GT is aimed at.

It’s not just about going faster though and safety has been given equal priority, with a comprehensive range of kit, including electronic stability control, vehicle stability management, hill-start assist control, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist and rain-sensing wipers.

There’s also air-conditioning, cruise control with a speed limiter, automatic lights, cornering lights and privacy glass on the rear windows and tailgate.

Like every Kia model, the GT comes with the company’s generous 100-000 mile transformable warranty.

Peace of mind also comes from the car’s impeccable handling and road manners, which made spending a week in its company was a pleasing experience.

With a kick-in price of just £14,405, the cee’d GT offers 18 variants, the most expensive being priced at a still commendably low £23,000.

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