Kia’s first high-performance model, the pro_cee’d GT, has now been joined by a five-door version, the cee’d GT, offering all the performance-enhancing styling and equipment features of the three-door car with an added dash of practicality.
The new five-door performance model sits at the pinnacle of Kia’s European-designed, European-engineered and European-built mid-sized hatchback range and is available in two versions – the cee’d GT costing £20,495, and the cee’d GT Tech priced at £22,995.
Both are powered by a turbocharged version of Kia’s 1.6-litre direct-injection petrol engine delivering 201bhp and 265Nm of torque. With a 0-60mph time of 7.4 seconds and a top speed of 143mph they deliver scintillating performance, but have also been tuned with everyday usability and civility in mind.
Re-tuned suspension ensures they are more than capable of handling the impressive power and torque outputs. Increased damper rebound and compression rates, stiffer springs and bushes and a larger rear anti-roll bar are joined by stylish 18-inch alloy wheels shod with Michelin Pilot Sport 3 tyres.
The steering has been tuned for a more direct and sporting feel and the Flex Steer function, which allows drivers to select from three levels of power assistance in other versions of the cee’d, has been removed for the GT. The brakes – 300mm ventilated discs at the front and 262mm at the rear – are the most powerful ever fitted to the cee’d range.
The 1.6-litre ‘Gamma’ engine is the first turbocharged petrol unit to be offered by Kia in the UK. The addition of an exhaust-driven turbocharger raises the power output of the normal Gamma direct-injection engine by 51 per cent and the amount of torque it develops by 61 per cent.
The T-GDi (Turbocharged Gasoline Direct injection) engine develops its 201bhp at 6,000rpm, but what really gives the GT its instantaneous response and rapid acceleration is the 265Nm of torque available without interruption from 1,750rpm to 4,500rpm. The cee’d GT accelerates from 37 to 60mph in fourth gear in only 5.4 seconds and from 50 to 75mph in fifth gear in 7.3 seconds – indicators of the supreme flexibility and immediacy of the T-GDi engine. More than 80 per cent of maximum torque is available from less than 1,500rpm.
The unique front-end treatment, echoing that of the pro_cee’d GT, introduces a lower, broader bumper and air dam and a wide central lower air intake to supply additional cooling air to the high-performance turbocharged engine. This is underscored by a red trim line which emphasises the wide and sporty track. The lower air intake is flanked on either side by high-gloss black inserts housing ‘ice-cube’ LED daytime running lamps and foglights. The high-gloss black theme is continued on the graphite chrome-framed main radiator grille – with Kia’s family ‘tiger-nose’ outline. The grille includes a smart ‘GT’ badge on the black high-gloss mesh.
From the rear, the broad stance is evident in the bold shoulders. This is emphasised by a diffuser section in the lower edge of the rear bumper, separating the dual sports exhaust outlets. The rear number plate is framed in high-gloss black and straddled by a vertical reversing light and reflectors, while the combination lamp units are LEDs which give a unique signature at night and when braking. There is a ‘GT’ badge on the tailgate.