4 out of 5 4.0
Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Kia's hatch is highly commendable, if not quite class best

Kia Ceed Hatchback (18 on) - rated 4 out of 5
Enlarge 40 photos

At a glance

New price £18,855 - £27,935
Lease from new From £196 p/m View lease deals
Used price £9,945 - £19,590
Used monthly cost From £248 per month
Fuel Economy 38.2 - 60.1 mpg
Road tax cost £150
Insurance group 8 - 22 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • Well-equipped across range
  • Lots of space inside
  • Seven-year warranty
  • Enjoyable Ceed GT warm hatch

CONS

  • Small engine range
  • Firmer ride than previous car
  • Lack of rear seat storage
  • Limited personalisation

Kia Ceed Hatchback rivals

Written by Murray Scullion on

Traditionally a value-focused alternative to the Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus and stablemate to the Hyundai i30, the latest Kia Ceed is a step-change over the outgoing model. It adds a raft of new tech and a much better drive to its roster of talents.

For car spotters, the big news comes from the Kia badging department - the apostrophe in Ceed name has gone for good.

More Kia Ceed bodystyles

This five-door hatchback is the first of a whole raft of Ceed-based models to be launched between 2018 and 2020. These include a traditional estate and – potentially – a crossover version, too. But there are no plans for a four-door saloon like the Hyundai i30 offers, or a three-door version. Instead, the three-door Proceed has become a slick five-door shooting brake estate. 

Fancy something with a bit more style and more boot space? Read up on the Kia Proceed shooting brake here

First up though is this car – which is lower, wider, and with a longer rear overhang than the old Ceed. It's a big change in terms of design, although you wouldn't necessarily recognise the fact straight away.

Ice-cube inspired LED daytime running lights are now standard across the range. These were previously available only on the sportier GT and GT-Line models, and it's hoped that these help to hint at this new car’s enhanced athleticism.

Kia Ceed offers sportier drive

Improved handling comes courtesy of a new, all-independent suspension set-up and steering that's been tuned for enthusiastic driving. The ride remains reasonably plush although there’s a harder edge to it than before.

Power choices are limited, with 1.0-litre, 1.4-litre, and 1.6-litre petrol engines, plus a 1.6-litre diesel. That diesel is available as a mild-hybrid too.

GT version warms up Ceed hatchback

As with the previous Ceed GT, the 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine develops 204hp and drives the front wheels. A six-speed manual gearbox is standard, but a seven-speed double-clutch automatic is available for the first time.

 

With styling tweaks inside and out to help differentiate it from the rest of the range, the GT sits lower on tweaked suspension and comes fitted with larger brakes.

Powered by a familiar 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine, the GT produces 204hp and is accompanied by a growly exhaust and meaty sounding engine. It's not going to trouble big hitters like the Golf GTI or Hyundai i30 N, but as a halfway house, the Ceed GT is a faster, more responsive and likeable hatch that still feels grown up and easy to live with every day. 

Kia Ceed has plenty of space as standard

Constructed on Kia’s new K2 platform, the Ceed boasts more impressive space all-round than before, with genuinely class-leading levels of headroom and extra inches between rear seat passengers.

The boot has also grown to 395 litres, putting it right up there with rivals like the Ford Focus and Volkswagen Golf in terms of practicality.

Rear seat passengers aren’t overly spoiled by storage space though, so it’s worth reminding them to leave anything that could rattle around in the boot.

Enhanced safety and tech offering

The Ceed is the first Kia to offer a semi-autonomous motorway driving mode, and as standard comes with high-tech kit like high beam assist and autonomous emergency braking.

All models get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone compatibility as standard, plus a reversing camera, and loads of other kit.

New gearbox and infotainment en route

There are two very clever bits of tech coming to the Kia Ceed soon. The first is an iMT (intelligent Manual Transmission). The long and the short of it is that it lets the car coast in neutral without the driver needing to do a thing. The upshot is that it has slightly reduced emissions, and slightly improved mpg. Read more about this in the driving section.

Kia's UVO entertainment system has also had a thorough re-working. The most exciting element of this is a trick augmented reality system available through the phone app that helps you find your destination. Interested? Skip to the infotainment section to learn more.

Click through these pages to read everything you need to know about the Kia Ceed, including its practicality, how much it costs to run - and whether we'd recommend buying one.

Kia Ceed Hatchback rivals

Other Kia Ceed models: