This review was first posted on The Family Panel. I am thinking about making a family car review a regular feature so I'd like to know your thoughts. Have a think about what is important to you for a family car and then come back on Thursday to give me your feedback. Thank you!
I would highly recommend the Kia C'eed as a great family car. It is a 5-door hatchback that offers good value for money compared to other cars of the same size.
As a 5-door car, I found it easy to get my toddler in and out of the rear seats. It has long belts which make it easy to fit most 3-point harness children's car seats. It also comes with ISOFIX as standard on all models.
I was surprised by all aspects of the spaciousness of the Kia C'eed. As a passenger I had more than enough room to stretch my (longer than average) legs without bashing my knees against the dashboard. In the back, even when my passenger seat was at it's furthest point, my daughter could wave her legs about to her heart's content without kicking the rear of my seat! These are both things that we struggle with in our existing car.
The boot of the C'eed is deceptive. My first impression was that the spaciousness of the passenger seats had caused the boot to be tiny; but, when I filled it full of luggage, I was proved wrong. We even managed to fit my daughter's tricycle in the boot without having to remove the parcel shelf. Bonus.
We tried the 1.6 litre CRDi Kia C'eed 2. The engine is designed and built in Europe to deliver 113bhp. I found the 6-speed gear box to be smooth - I REALLY enjoyed driving the car due to the effortlessness of the gear change. At low gears I was disappointed with the acceleration, but from 3rd gear upwards the car felt powerful and responsive.
My only gripes about the C'eed were cosmetic. The C'eed has an extremely high specification even on their standard models but there are one or two little luxuries that I missed - a heated windscreen, rain-sensitive wipers and automatic lights would all be on my wishlist. I was disappointed that the driver's arm-rest was in fixed position - given that the seat had such a wide range of positions, this seemed strange to me. I also had difficulty viewing my headlight indicator because the anti-glare shade around the speedometer obstructed my view. In general though, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the finish throughout – the seat fabric and dashboard finish were of a high standard.
I found the CD system in the C'eed to be surprisingly good quality for a manufacturer's standard installation. The steering wheel controls were very easy to use. I also liked the fact that I could play and charge my iPod from the audio and USB ports.
Kia are unique in Europe in that they offer a 7-year (or 100,000 miles) warranty – that is quite some statement about their confidence in the quality of build and the reliability of the car. At £15,255 on the road (for the 1.6 CRDi C'eed 2), I feel that the C'eed offers great value for money as a family car that is fun to drive. It comes in at insurance band 6 and Vehicle Excise Duty band C (£35 per year!) because it has low CO2 emissions and a combined fuel economy of around 63 miles per gallon.
You can find out more about the Kia C'eed at www.kia.co.uk.