Boom! That was the sound of Kia landing firmly on the radar of Driving Spirit. Their first proper hot hatch is now on sale in the UK and its asking price makes a lot of the competition look decidedly expensive.
With a ticket of £19,995 the new Proceed GT is the cheapest C sector hot hatch on the market. Admittedly, a turbocharged 1.6 with ‘only’ 201bhp and 0-60mph in 7.4 seconds is a little short of the performance of most of the obvious rivals but what the GT lacks in pace it makes up for with looks and value.
Penned by ex-Audi designer Peter Schreyer, the Proceed GT features many of the design queues that make his previous employer’s cars so desirable. A sleek side profile with neatly sculpted panels, big wheels, gaping intakes, twin exhausts. It’s even got the requisite LED driving lights, but in a departure from the over-used strip lighting, Kia has gone for a 2×2 formation alongside the fog lights. It should make the GT easy to identify in your rear-view mirror.
Kit levels are impressive and give you all the luxuries you’d expect in a near £20k car. Highlights are the Recaro seats, a first for a Kia, and the ‘GT’ LCD display in the instrument cluster which can show speed, engine torque and turbo boost pressure in addition to all the other gubbins you’d expect.
For added creature comforts you can upgrade to ‘GT Tech’ for an extra £2,500. This gives you a seven-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation and a reversing camera, as well as heated front seats and steering wheel, start/stop button, keyless entry system, dual-zone climate, adaptive xenon headlights. That’s a lot of car for the money and don’t forget it comes with Kia’s 7 year/100,000 mile warranty.
There’s also a limited ‘GT 1st Edition’ model available for £23,995. Only 50 will be coming to the UK and the extra money buys you a GT Tech with added gloss black highlights, a tilt/slide sunroof, ambient lighting, fancy stitching, carpet mats and a number plaque. It comes with ‘Fusion White’ metallic paint as standard.
Personally I’d stay the right side of £20,000 and opt for a base GT, but then I like a bargain.
|Performance & Economy||Kia Pro_cee'd GT|
|Engine||1,591cc 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol|
|Transmission||6-speed manual, front-wheel drive|
|Power (PS / bhp)||204 / 201|
|Torque (Nm / lb.ft)||265 / 195|
|0 - 62 mph (seconds)||7.4|
|Top Speed (mph)||143|
|CO2 Emissions (g/km)||171|
|Combined Economy (mpg)||38.2|
|Kerb Weight (kg)||1,359|