'3' 1.6 CRDi 48v iMT
all done it: bought a car
because of its looks. Sometimes
it works out just fine; other times
you find that looks arent
That said, Kias
XCeed is one of
and its flair doesnt
overshadow its functionality...
A HIGHER-RIDING TAKE on Kia's rock-solid Ceed family hatchback, the
XCeed serves up some eye-catching sparkle. And for those lusting after a more
elegant SUV, its sharp, finely detailed and stylishly jacked-up looks put it
into contention with some very credible company such as VW's T-Cross, the MINI
Countryman, and Mercedes' GLA.
When it comes to engine choices the XCeed comes to market with a full flush
of efficient powerplants: turboed direct injection petrol; 48-volt mild hybrid
turbodiesel; and a plug-in petrol-electric PHEV notable for emitting a 'blue
planet' 32g/km and potentially capable of 201mpg.
been driving the frugal 1.6-litre CRDi 48-volt mild hybrid turbodiesel whose
four-pot unit is good for 134bhp and 206lb ft of torque. On the road that translates
to 121mph, 0-60mph in 10.2 seconds, and a commendable real-world average of
54.6mpg. If you're a petrol person, then for you Kia has either a 158bhp 1.5-litre
or a 1.0-litre
with 118bhp, both T-GDi turbocharged direct-injection units.
the record, the
is part of Kias
Ceed family; its siblings
include the hatchback
Ceed, Ceed Sportswagon
estate, and the coupe-
While all of the family
members are good
lookers, the handsome
XCeed is undoubtedly
the poster boy for
Transmission-wise, Kia's smooth-shifting seven-speed dual clutch DCT autobox
can be had with the 1.5-litre models although 1.0-litre versions come with a
six-speed shift-stick; the 1.6 turbodiesel we've been driving uses a new intelligent
six-speed manual transmission that employs guide-by-wire technology. XCeed line-up
prices kick off at £21K for the 1.0-litre and run to £35K for the PHEV so there's
something for every taste, every use, and every budget.
For the record, the slinky-looking XCeed is part of Kia's large Ceed family;
its siblings include the hatchback Ceed, Ceed Sportswagon estate, and the coupe-esque
'shooting brake', the ProCeed. While all of the family members are good lookers,
the XCeed is undoubtedly the poster boy for the range.
Swing open a front door and you'll find a particularly inviting interior. Given
its taller roofline and raised suspension, getting aboard is easy on your body
but, surprisingly, you don't feel you're climbing high up into the cabin. However,
once you're there you will appreciate the elevated seating; the driver enjoys
a first-rate driving position and a great view down the road, making the XCeed
decidedly easy to place. The finish is swish and looks upmarket and the seats,
upholstered in black cloth paired with black faux leather bolsters, are supportive
and comfy and stay that way even on long trips.
Space-wise it's all good news with a fist of headroom (twice that if you set
the seats at their lowest position) and generous room around each front chair
in all directions. Both height-adjustable front seats also come with electric
lumbar adjustment and three-stage heating plus there are height-adjustable belts
for that custom fit.
A very big box-ticker for many drivers will be the XCeed's foolproof non-touchscreen
(Yay!) controls for the dual-zone climate system, so no distractions
playing tap-the-screen on the move. The decor features premium-feel materials
with satisfying fit-and-finish plus ample chrome and trim highlights to lift
the all-black treatment. Steering is via a tactile leather-wrapped wheel made
even better by a heated rim and comprehensive multifunction controls. From behind
the wheel the dials are crystal clear: a conventional rev-counter and speedometer
flank a central 4.2-inch information display that can show trip information,
sat-nav directions and other helpful info as well as that most important digital
readout your road speed.
XCeed also scores well when it comes to in-cabin storage. Even followers of
decluttering guru Marie Kondo will feel at home as there's a place for everything
courtesy of 1.5-litre bottle-holding front door bins, a spacious box beneath
the sliding central armrest, a real-world-sized glovebox, sizeable dual-usage
cupholders, a deep lidded tray ahead of the gear lever attended by a pair of
USBs slots (one a fast-charger) and 12-volt power socket along with a bed for
your smartphone, as well as a drop-down overhead case for your shades.
it comes to
what motorists really
want is not tech overload
ease of use
exactly what the
XCeed serves up.
Even touchscreen virgins
will get to grips with
the navigation and
housed in the high-set
right from the get-go.
It helps that the XCeeds
system, with its 10.25-
inch, is one of the best to
use with crisp graphics,
easy menus, and snappy
When it comes to infotainment systems what motorists really want is not tech
overload but straightforward ease of use and that's exactly what the
XCeed serves up. Even touchscreen virgins will get to grips with the navigation
and infotainment features housed in the high-set display occupying the dash's
centre spot right from the get-go.
It helps, of course, that the XCeed's system, with its 10.25-inch, is one of
the best to use with crisp graphics, easy menus, and snappy response times and
makes using both the infotainment and the 3D satellite navigation a pleasure.
Not that there's any shortage of features as the full package includes telematics,
Kia Connected Services and TomTom Live. You also get a DAB radio, media device
connection USB, Bluetooth with voice recognition and music streaming plus as
well as, for your smartphone, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, both with voice
control. There's also a camera system with dynamic guidelines to make reversing
easier along with trustworthy rear parking sensors.
Kit is well-specced on the mid-range '3' model which comes with 2-Zone climate
control that chills the interior effectively if that's what you've dialled-up,
Smart Entry System, cruise control and speed limiter, privacy glass (tailgate
and rear windows), engine Start/Stop button, reversing camera with active grid,
powerfolding and heated door mirrors (on demand and automatically on locking
and leaving), electronic parking brake with autohold, one shot up/down electric
windows, auto-dimming rearview mirror, and a set of standout metallic dark grey
5 x 'Y'-spoke 18-inch alloy wheels.
In addition you also get heaps of active safety and driving dynamics stuff starting
with Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist with automatic emergency braking (incorporating
pedestrian and cyclist detection) along with Lane-Keep Assist, Bi-function LED
projection headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights, LED indicators, projection
front fog lights, LED tail lights, LED rear fog lights, LED high-mounted brake
light, auto lights and rain sensing wipers, High-Beam Assist, Driver Attention
Warning, Speed Limit Information Function, hill-start Assist Control, tyre pressure
monitoring, dual horn, Intelligent Stop and Go, Electronic Stability Control
and Vehicle Stability Management, twin front airbags, twin side front airbags,
and twin curtain airbags. For a small SUV, that's a very generous serving of
certainly won't have any problems inviting adults into the XCeed's rear cabin.
The back doors open wide, to ninety degrees, which makes not only for easy entry
and exit but dealing with child seats and those who need to use them
a doddle. Despite measuring just 4.4-metres nose-to-tail and providing
generous room in the front, the XCeed still manages to offer a roomy and comfortable
place for grown-ups travelling behind the driver. With decent headroom and good
knee- and foot-room and comfortable, well-padded seats with backrests set at
a relaxing angle, it's a great place to lounge.
along in an
XCeed is likeable for all
the right reasons;
apart from enjoying a
superior view, its
comfortable and quiet.
The good news is that
despite the raised and
(but in a good
way) than that of its
Ceed hatchback sister
the XCeed feels nicely
settled and reassuringly
sure-footed as it
neutralises the lumps
and bumps of the UKs
Three is often a hard-to-please number in most cars' second rows, but the XCeed's
rear seat passengers have room to stretch out. Even two-plus-one can be seated
side-by-side harmoniously. Adding to the liveability are bottle-holding door
bins, accommodating seatback pouches, dedicated air vents, and twin cupholders
built into the wide and well-padded drop-down centre armrest.
Riding along in an XCeed is likeable for all the right reasons; apart from enjoying
a superior view, it's comfortable and quiet. The good news is that despite the
raised and reworked all-round independent suspension 'softer' (but in
a good way) than that of its Ceed hatchback sister the XCeed feels nicely
settled and reassuringly sure-footed as it neutralises the lumps and bumps of
the UK's decidedly patchy blacktop.
In fact, whatever surfaces you're driving over it feels assured and comfortable.
And it's not just those being passengered who will tell you that for
the driver it's a pliant and satisfying drive especially on longer trips when
the XCeed effortlessly eats up the miles, making short work of what would otherwise
be onerous journeys. And neither do the 18-inch alloy wheels, wrapped in grippy
235/45 Continental rubber, compromise the ride.
Engaging. Not a term you always hear about the driving characteristics of an
SUV. However, the XCeed makes driving just that. While it may look SUV-esque,
it's front-wheel drive-only but the accurate electric power-steering is satisfyingly
quick and easily keeps up with the XCeed's dynamics to ensure you can enjoy
its sweet spot. Unsurprisingly, the consensus is that the XCeed is the Ceed
family's best handling model. And as already mentioned, the XCeed's suspension
has been fettled to take full account of its higher ride height and, thanks
to plenty of grip and well-controlled body lean, it feels fine and dandy flowing
along twisty roads, all of which makes it pleasing long distance tourer too.
On urban roads the decent visibility, light controls, and good turning circle
make manoeuvring in traffic a breeze. And when you need to park up there's a
camera to take out any trickiness. Needless to say, it brakes reassuringly both
when feathering your momentum in busy townscapes or during a full-on emergency
all the powerplants in the XCeed range are fit for purpose be it going
green with the hybrid PHEV, everyday load lugging, the school run or simply
pootling around town the four-pot diesels are still the best ones to
have (while you're allowed!) if you plan on making regular motorway journeys;
the longer the better.
CRDi diesels offer
As tested here, the
134bhp unit doesnt
hang about, with a
0-60mph time of 10.2
seconds and a top speed
Plus, with 206lb ft on tap
from 1,500rpm, it can
assuredly talk the torque:
nice and responsive
across its range, even
in the higher gears.
It might be a manual but
an intelligent one
with guide-by-wire tech
all you need to know
is that it works slickly
and enables fast gear
changes across the
The CRDi diesels offer strong performance. As tested here, the 134bhp oil-burning
unit doesn't hang about, with a 0-60mph time of 10.2 seconds and a top speed
of 121mph. Plus, with 206lb ft on tap between 1,500 and 3,000rpm, it can assuredly
talk the torque, and it's nice and responsive across its range, even in the
higher gears. Generally quiet when working, your passengers won't easily guess
it's a diesel.
It might be a manual but it's also an intelligent one with guide-by-wire tech
all you need to know is that it works slickly and enables fast gear changes
across the six ratios. A handy Drive Mode feature lets you switch between Eco,
Normal and Sport settings. Sport does exactly what you'd expect and firms up
the helm while liberating some very palpable urge.
And, no, you don't lose any of the hatchback's practicality by choosing the
'X' variant. In fact you gain some most notably a bigger boot. At 426
litres, the XCeed's squarish boot (a layout that makes maximising lots of suitcases
a no-brainer) is not only bigger than the standard Ceed's but access is excellent
too. The range-topping XCeeds make it even easier, with a powered tailgate.
Not only that but the XCeed's higher-off-the-ground boot actually makes loading
more efficient, thanks to its reach-for-the-sky rear hatch with flip-up parcel
shelf-style luggage cover. Fold down the 60:40-split rear seatbacks and you'll
have access to a 1,378-litre loadbay with a seamless floor, and although there
is an angled step-up where the rear seatbacks fold down, it's not a problem.
Naturally you'll find all the tie-downs, bag hooks and stretchy nets you need
to secure your cargo, along with a 12-volt power socket. Very handy, also, is
the big, wide and deep storage box located beneath the floor. The XCeed's smart
roof rails are fully functional and come in useful on staycation trips when
all seats are likely to be taken. Plus, what you can't carry, you can always
tow up to a maximum of a braked 1,200kg.
Why settle for the boring squared-off looks of the average SUV when you can
have a stylish alternative? Drive a high-riding XCeed and in addition to the
sleek lines you'll enjoy all the practicality and versatility benefits of a
'boxier' SUV but without any of the bulk. And make no mistake, this XCeed is
satisfying to drive too. The icing on the cake? As with every Kia model, it's
the brand's very reassuring 7-year / 100,000-mile warranty. ~ MotorBar
Kia XCeed '3' 1.6 CRDi 48v iMT
Maximum speed: 121mph | 0-60mph: 10.2 seconds | Test Average: 54.6mpg
Power: 134bhp | Torque: 206lb ft | CO2: 133g/km