In a totally surprising fashion and completely unlike the engine we tested on the other occasion, the little 1.4-liter four cylinder we drove now was very different in the way it behaved, especially compared with the official numbers. To make things clearer, if we only look at the specification sheet, this is an "upgraded" engine.
On the non-facelift model, the very same engine offers no less than 109 horsepower, mainly thanks to a highly-efficient Continuous Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) system. Obvious advantage – power. Main disadvantage – high fuel consumption.
Apparently, the high power versus displacement ratio didn't win too many hearts so Kia decided to "upgrade" it. The result? It now offers only 90 horsepower "thanks" to some tinkering of the ECU. While this might look as a step taken backwards at first glance, the "new" engine continues to provide a similar level of performance, but the average fuel consumption has dropped.
During our city driving session we managed to achieve an average fuel economy of about 9.5 liters per 100 kilometers (US 24.8 mpg). Pretty far from the official 7.2 liters per 100 km (US 32.7 mpg), but then again, we drove it through extremely busy traffic and the car had only... 12 kilometers (about 7 miles) on board when we first took it from the dealer.
The ECU-remapping must have done something to the torque curve as well, since we found the little 1.4 to actually behave better than its 1.6-liter brother at lower revs in the city. The noise levels were also dramatically decreased compared to what we had driven before in the non-facelift 1.6.
As far as visibility goes, nothing has really changed from the non-revised version of the Cee'd, with one small difference. The exterior rear-view mirrors have been reshaped, but the overall area of the mirror has been left alone, so almost no changes there either. Continue reading
Hold on, Lou Cheeka would like to say something...
Heey... I remember the Kia Cee'd. Didn't we test a similar one a few months back? I don't remember if I liked it or not, but I can surely say this one is a looker. Those squinty headlights look like a Geisha's eyes, nice! Oh and did you notice the chrome strip on the front grill? Bling-bling!
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