GT 1.6 T-GDi
a 201bhp turbocharged
1.6-litre petrol engine calling the
GT is as entertaining to drive as
it is dramatic to look at. Enjoy!
GOOD NEWS IS THAT KIA KNOW just where to draw the line
at 201bhp, which is just enough to make the GT entertainingly sporty without
coming over all unnecessary and turning into a trackday special. For drivers
who like some 'kick' from their steed, the pro_cee'd GT is swift, responsive,
and fun to drive but, crucially, it's also comfortable.
Even when not finished in the standout Yellow Flame paintwork of our test car,
the three-door pro_cee'd looks very much the GT with its cab-forward design
and short thrusting nose fronting a long, lean, wedge-shaped bodyshell and smart
dark alloy wheels tightly framed by flat-cut wheelarches.
quad 'ice cube' clusters of LED daytime running lights bracketing the wide,
functional lower air intake, linked by a red stripe across the front splitter
and crowned by a black high-gloss mesh 'tiger-nose' grille really do set it
open the long
and youll be welcomed
by an invitingly shapely,
sports seat that holds
you firmly when you
need it, but
At the tail the steeply angled rear screen is capped by a spoiler while the
tailgate itself runs down between the GT's broad shoulders and new oval-shaped
signature LED taillight units. Chromed sports tailpipes exit the bodywork either
side of the diffuser inset into the lower edge of the rear bumper. Looks-wise,
it's a definite 'wow' and well able to outshine its Euro-zone
rivals in the car park.
Swing open the long coupe-like door you don't have to open it
far to get in easily and you'll be welcomed by an invitingly shapely,
suede-and-leather Recaro sports seat. Whoever rides shotgun will have plenty
of room to stretch out their legs and the longish seat bases provide effective
under-knee support. With most three-door models there's usually a discombobulating
stretch to get the seatbelt not with the GT; a belt 'butler' politely
hands it to you.
The Recaros are grippy hip-huggers that hold you firmly when you need it, but
never pinch. Plus they have power lumbar adjustment and three-stage heating.
For the driver this is tied in with an excellent driving position that provides
good all-round visibility.
Once you're behind the grippy wheel there's a lot that adds to the 'GT' look
and feel. For a start, the wheel itself it's a smart, flat-bottomed,
all-black item with perforated leather work areas and red stitching. Multifunction
controls include those for cruise, speed limiter, audio, phone and the driver's
computer menu. Close to hand is an illuminated aluminium Start/Stop engine button
that's part of the keyless Smart Entry system.
Not only are the Recaros heated but the wheel is too. This is good news
if you haven't yet tried one prepare to be pleasantly surprised as it doesn't
just come into its own when Jack Frost is on the prowl, but is great all year
round because it keeps your hands and fingers nicely flexible.
particularly neat piece of kit is the high-definition TFT LCD multifunction
display. Press the 'GT' button on the wheel and the analogue-effect speedometer
display changes to Performance mode showing digital speed along with engine
torque, turbo boost pressure, and important trip data.
youre behind the
grippy wheel theres
a lot that adds to the GT
look and feel.
For a start, the wheel
itself its a smart,
item with perforated
leather work areas and
Also while in Performance mode an electronic sound generator injects a sportier
engine note into the cabin through the car's speakers whenever you press the
stainless steel pedal to the metal. And more civilised than a rip-roaring exhaust
note that's likely to become tiresome during a long road trip.
Other 2016-model year equipment upgrades include the addition of an MP3-compatible
DAB radio as part of the six-speaker audio system and illuminated USB and AUX
ports although you won't find a CD player due to buyers' preferences
for digital music streaming. Bluetooth phone connectivity with music
streaming is also standard.
The seven-inch touchscreen comes with a SatNav system that offers straightforward
spoken directions and full UK postcode destination entry and lets
drivers choose the fastest, shortest or most fuel-efficient route. It also incorporates
TomTom functionality for additional driving information such as traffic updates,
speed camera locations, and weather reports.
Buttons either side of the screen allow quick jumps into top-level menus and
map 'zooming'. And for when going backwards is more important than going forwards,
the screen shows the view from the reversing camera overlaid with a useful positioning
The list of standard-fit equipment is long and we haven't mentioned it all,
but other essentials fitted as standard include a quick-acting 2Zone climate
control system, one-shot up/down front windows (the rear glass is fixed), tinted
glass with privacy glass to the rear side windows and tailgate, auto lights
and wipes, and on-demand powerfold door mirrors that autofold when locking and
Not only does the GT make excellent use of the space within its 4.3m body, but
it's also well supplied with cabin storage for all your 'stuff' including a
big cooled glovebox, door pockets that will take bottles and a drop-down sunglasses
holder for your shades.
the GT has a five-star Euro-NCAP rating and comes with six airbags (twin front,
front side and side curtains). Other active and passive safety kit includes
cruise control, a speed limiter, a stability control system, hill-start assist,
impact-sensing door unlocking, Emergency Stop Signalling (flashes the rear brake
lamps in an emergency stop to alert following drivers), rear wash/wipe and tyre
gets the power to the
front wheels via a six-
speed manual box. Alongside 201bhp it puts
out 195lb ft of torque
from 1,500rpm, enough to
give the GT plenty
of move it-move it...
the GT's engine bay is a turboed 1.6-litre lightweight all-aluminium four-pot
that gets the power to the front wheels via a six-speed manual 'box.
Alongside 201bhp it puts out 195lb ft of torque which together with peak torque
now hitting earlier at 1,500rpm (and available without interruption all the
way to 4,500rpm) gives the GT plenty of 'move it-move it' 0-60mph
is dismissed in 7.3 seconds and it will run all the way to 143mph. It's responsive
and perfectly happy to be used hard but, to its credit, is equally nonplussed
pottering around 20mph city zones.
Not only that, but this GT drives brilliantly. The gear knob is a palm-fitting,
black leather ball and the change action is quick and clean so there's physical
satisfaction in making the best of the 'box's six ratios. Another big plus is
the decently-weighted, rack-and-pinion, motor-driven power steering that replaces
the variable rate 'Flex Steer' system found in less high-spirited pro_cee'd
models. Sitting on retuned springs and dampers it feels reassuringly planted
through corners, resists understeer and torque-steer well and is really easy
to drive quickly.
Traditionally the default hot-hatch ride is more trackday 'bump-stop' than glide.
No such downside with Kia's GT although stiffer, its sports suspension
has ample compliance to make it an enjoyable everyday steer. Hardcore hot-hatch
pilots might grumble about the lack of rumble but keen drivers will applaud
the GT's easygoing nature and whenever they feel like some quick-time
driving the GT is always more than up for it.
The back seat can accommodate three adults relatively comfortably; getting them
there is not a problem either because the Recaros have an easy tilt-and-slide
action that allows unhampered access. There's enough headroom and heads are
a long way from the rear screen; backrest angles are good; and the seats comfy.
Loads of knee and leg room and, as there's no transmission tunnel, room for
three sets of feet all make travelling in the back cabin pleasant.
out are far better than the rising outer waistline would suggest and there's
even room for refreshments can/bottle-holding bins are sited each
side of the rear seat.
hot-hatch ride is more
No such downside with
Kias GT it serves
up thoroughly enjoyable
driving with adrenaline
spikes without the need
to visit an osteopath
every time youve had
The GT's boot swallows an impressive 380 litres of luggage loaded
through a light-to- lift, high-opening tailgate. Another thoughtful touch: the
rear belts stay completely out of the way when the 60:40-split rear seatbacks
are folded to extend the boot into a useful 1,225-litre loadbay.
addition to the expected 'stretchy' luggage net, bag hooks and tie-down rings,
the boot floor lifts to reveal not one but two stacked storage trays: the upper
one is divided into seven separate sections; the one below has a large single
compartment and also houses the tyre repair kit.
Making things even easier, there's a retaining strap to keep the boot floor
'lid' out of your way when accessing the trays. The lightweight rigid luggage
cover-cum-rear parcel shelf is also easily removed. All of which adds up to
a lot of versatility for a sportily styled three-door hatch.
Another figure that will be of interest to those with £23K to spend on a fun,
three-door GT is the fuel consumption. Officially this stands at 38.2mpg for
the combined cycle with emissions of 170g/km.
However, a week spent enjoying the GT's lively dynamic abilities didn't damage
any MotorBar plastic thanks to an overall average of 34.5mpg. Few owners
could honestly complain about that, especially when the GT comes with the longest
transferrable warranty of any carmaker Kia's seven-year, 100,000-mile
peace-of-mind makes the ultimate backstop.
While Kia is not best-known for being the purveyor of hot-hatchbacks this, their
firstborn, is an incredibly well-rounded package that serves up thoroughly enjoyable
driving with adrenaline spikes without the need to visit an osteopath every
time you've had some fun.
Kia pro_cee'd GT 1.6 T-GDi
Maximum speed: 143mph | 0-60mph: 7.3 seconds | Test Average: 34.5mpg
Power: 201bhp | Torque: 195lb ft | CO2: 170g/km