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New Car Review
Kia Cerato Si Sedan
Say ‘Kia’ to most people and they think South Korean, good value for money, affordable; rarely do stylish, well-engineered and good quality come to mind. This new third-generation Cerato turns this theory on its head and shows Kia has matured as a manufacturer and has its styling and engineering act together.
Value for money
Starting at $19,990, the Cerato is within the budget of people serious about buying a new car. The entry-level Cerato S has a 1.8-litre engine – smaller than its 2.0-litre predecessor – but delivers much more power thanks to direct fuel-injection technology. Although the Cerato is a small car, it’s capable of carting around four adults comfortably with reasonable rear leg and head room. All occupants are well protected with a suite of six airbags. So what do you get for your money? All models have a pretty impressive list of goodies, starting with keyless entry, front and rear parking sensors, Bluetooth streaming and steering-wheel mounted cruise control, through to heated seats, electric folding door mirrors and a spare tyre. Moving up, the Si model has a rear-view camera with in-audio display screen and parking sensors, dusk-sensing automatic headlamps, a smart key with push-button start and welcome puddle lights – a system that lights up the ground when you unlock the car to stop you stepping in puddles.
Design and Function
This generation Cerato is longer, wider, lower and lighter than the outgoing model. A stylish new hatchback version has just been released to complement the sedan. With 60:40 split-folding rear seats, there’s plenty of room to make practical use of the rear space. The interior ergonomic design helps accommodate drivers of varying size with a six-way seat adjustment.
On the road
Kia had the sense to have local engineers give input into the design and performance characteristics of the suspension. The Cerato has a firm ride but decent handling for a car of this type and price. In general acceleration, the Cerato is one of the best in class, albeit a bit loud at the upper end of the rev range. It also has hill-start assist control, which prevents roll-back during stop-start driving on sloping roads
Cerato is an affordable small car that has the room, power and comfort to suit most people’s needs.
Kia Cerato Si 6-speed manual Hatchback:
4 cylinder variable DOHC
Multi Point Fuel Injection
7.4 litres per 100 km
129 kW @ 6,500 rpm
209 Nm @ 4,700 rpm
6 speed manual (optional 6 speed auto)
Electric power steering
1,200 kg (braked)
5 years/unlimited kilometres
Report provided by RAA - Mark Borlace
Test vehicle supplied by Kia Australia P/L