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New Kia XCeed is a Focus Active rival with a seven-year warranty

Published 27 June 2019

Kia has launched its new XCeed as an 'urban crossover utility vehicle' set to take on the Ford Focus Active when it goes on sale later this year - with prices expected to start at around £21,000.

The only body panels carried over from the five-door Ceed are the front doors, suggesting the XCeed is a bit more than a jacked-up hatch in the same vein as the Focus Active. The Korean manufacturer claims it offers comparable interior space to an SUV, along with a more sporty drive than conventional crossovers.

The XCeed sits up to 42mm higher than the standard Ceed. It's also slightly longer than the hatchback and shorter than a Sportage, while its boot is bigger than the Ceed's (426 litres compared to 395 litres). An adjustable two-step boot floor along with a hidden underfloor storage compartment sounds promising for buyers seeking practicality.

Inside, the XCeed's cabin looks largely the same as the standard Ceed. A yellow colour pack can be selected in a bid to appeal to a younger audience. This features vibrant yellow highlights throughout the cabin, including trim around the air vents and stitching on the seats and doors.

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There's also an optional 10.25-inch navigation system perched on the dash, along with the brand's first 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster in place of conventional dials.

Engineers have been tasked with making the XCeed handle better than a typical family SUV. Its fully-independent suspension is softer than that used in the regular hatchback, yet Kia claims it doesn't lean any more in bends.

There's the same engine line-up as the Ceed, including a 1.0-litre three-cylinder and 1.4-litre four-cylinder petrols. The range is topped by the 1.6-litre turbo used in the Ceed GT, while a 1.6-litre diesel is available with 115 or 136PS.

Electrified engines, including 48V mild hybrid and plug-in hybrid options, will be offered in the Kia XCeed from early 2020.

Production of the Kia XCeed will start at the firm's Slovakia plant in August, with UK deliveries expected late in the year. Prices will be confirmed at a later date, expected to start at around £21,000. The XCeed will be sold with the company's seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty.

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Comments

Engineer Andy    on 26 June 2019

Looks like that will be a direct competitor to the upcoming Mazda CX-30 as well. Both very good looking. I'll reserve judgement on how it drives though, given the (related) Hyundai i30 Fastback in non 'N' form wasn't brilliant on the ride quality and wasn't available on anything below 17in wheels and (low profile) tyres.

gavsmit    on 27 June 2019

Another new release, another huge price tag.

It wasn't long ago that people were shocked that the top spec trim level of a focus-class car cost over £20k - but now they start from over that!

With such extortionate car price inflation no wonder cars are not selling as well these days - why spend so much money on something that will be worth a lot less almost immediately, then get damaged by all the bad drivers and vandals about?

mmmmm    on 27 June 2019

Another new release, another huge price tag. It wasn't long ago that people were shocked that the top spec trim level of a focus-class car cost over £20k - but now they start from over that! With such extortionate car price inflation no wonder cars are not selling as well these days - why spend so much money on something that will be worth a lot less almost immediately, then get damaged by all the bad drivers and vandals about?

Oh dear...have you calculated car price inflation,and if so where did you find the tables?.

gavsmit    on 27 June 2019

Another new release, another huge price tag. It wasn't long ago that people were shocked that the top spec trim level of a focus-class car cost over £20k - but now they start from over that! With such extortionate car price inflation no wonder cars are not selling as well these days - why spend so much money on something that will be worth a lot less almost immediately, then get damaged by all the bad drivers and vandals about?

Oh dear...have you calculated car price inflation,and if so where did you find the tables?.

I used a website of historical inflation figures compared to the percentage increase of what the same make/model/trim of my current car now costs a few years later. The percentage price difference between my car and a new model of it (that doesn't differ significantly from my car and is for the same engine and trim) is almost three times the rate of inflation averaged out over the same period of time, hence my concern.

Other models may tell an even worse story.

mmmmm    on 27 June 2019

Looks like that will be a direct competitor to the upcoming Mazda CX-30 as well. Both very good looking. I'll reserve judgement on how it drives though, given the (related) Hyundai i30 Fastback in non 'N' form wasn't brilliant on the ride quality and wasn't available on anything below 17in wheels and (low profile) tyres.

What was your opinion of the NVH?.

Engineer Andy    on 27 June 2019

Looks like that will be a direct competitor to the upcoming Mazda CX-30 as well. Both very good looking. I'll reserve judgement on how it drives though, given the (related) Hyundai i30 Fastback in non 'N' form wasn't brilliant on the ride quality and wasn't available on anything below 17in wheels and (low profile) tyres.

What was your opinion of the NVH?.

I read the HJ review/test drive of the i30 Fastback. Good enough for me, especially as they said that the standard hatch model rode perfectly fine. Apparently it wasn't just the use of 17in+ wheels and corresponding low(ish) profile tyres - it appeared to be the actual suspension set up. They appear to have understood this when devloping the N version as that car has a softer (but still very firm), more forgiving suspension compared to the N version of the hatch.

Sadly rather a common theme with modern cars these days - many compensate for either an inate lack of decent handling (poor engineering) by adding on many gizmos (the three-lettered acronymn kind) and big wheels/low profile tyres/stiffer suspension. The result: terrible ride on the many poorly-surafced British roads, you have to crawl over speed humps (often near walking speed) - not great for mpg and pollution (lower gear needed) and many of us who suffer from back problems get worse. That and you face large bills from more frequent/expensive tyre and wheel replacements as they wear more quickly and are much more susceptible to damage (and aren't so good for mpg).

I would note that Mazda have actually de-rated their suspension on the latest Mazda3 to make the ride better, apparently without compromising the handling much. Presumably they'll be doing the same for the others that are built on the same platform like the new CX-30. I found the ride in the gen-3 car fine when shod on 16in rims and 60 profile tyres, too firm on the 18in rims/45 profile tyres on the Sport models. Often there are also no 'luxury' models with higher profile tyres, because they are also Sport models. Again, something perhaps Mazda (and others) are starting to learn, as a 'SE-L Lux' model is being offered as well as a Sport. I'll have to check if that come on 18in rims or not.

hissingsid    on 27 June 2019

Mazdas have an excellent 6-speed torque converter automatic transmission (I drive a CX-3) but Kias have a 7-speed dual clutch automated manual. This would be a deal breaker for me, unless their transmission proves to be more reliable than VW's DSG or Ford's recently abandoned Powershift.

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