Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Sporty with Practical Edge; Inspired with Some Force-Fed Fun, Vani Naidoo Likes This Grand Tourer Wearing Hot Hatch Clothes

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Sporty with Practical Edge; Inspired with Some Force-Fed Fun, Vani Naidoo Likes This Grand Tourer Wearing Hot Hatch Clothes

Article excerpt

KIA has added some bite to the buzz of its new-generation Cerato Koup with the addition of a turbocharged model, the first time it has ventured into this territory.

It retains the naturally aspirated 2.0-litre Koup in the line-up improving its all-round look, but it is with the exciting turbo that the South Korean manufacturer hopes to sway opinion.

The Turbo, Kia's first real sports car, gets the jump ahead of the Pro_Ceed GT hot hatch to be launched this month, and with a starting price of $27,990 it is certainly a value-for-money proposition.

Comfort

The interior of the Koup is surprisingly spacious, with the back seat passengers the most obvious benefactors of the slightly larger dimensions.

Headroom there is still tight for taller adults but children can sit in comfort with the wider opening front doors facilitating easier entry.

The feel is much less sporty than you would expect from a coupe, almost disappointingly so, and while there is little amongst the console and instrumentation to insult, there is very little to excite either.

It looks a lot like the Cerato four-door sedan with a mix of nicely tactile surfaces and cheaper plastics blended together with polished chrome highlights.

Dials and buttons are well set out and the steering wheel controls, although numerous, are easy to navigate.

The seats in the Turbo are part fabric and artificial leather, the latter unmistakeably so. They, are however, quite supportive providing cushioning and bolstering where needed most. There are plenty of cup holders and decent storage options, with the boot a handy 433 litres with the 60:40 split rear seats in position.

On the road

The Koup Turbo is powered by a lusty 1.6-litre direct-injection turbo engine, borrowed from its cousin the Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo and paired with either a six-speed manual or auto transmission.

It does not disappoint.

The Turbo offers a sharp, balanced ride with responsive handling and has an unerring ability to impress. It is nippy around corners, shines when pushed and is equal to the task on the open highway.

The steering is pretty direct, while the suspension, tuned for Australian conditions, makes for comfortable forays even on poor surfaces. …

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