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Kia's hot hatch is here!

Here’s the cats meow! Kia’s pro_cee’d GT, Kia’s most performance based car will finally be here from the first of next month the hot three-door is priced from just £19,995. Developed for an enthusiastic drive whilst still remaining practical, affordable and comfortable for everyday life.

Kia Pro ceed GT

Powered by a turbocharged version of Kia’s 1.6-litre direct-injection petrol engine, the pro_cee’d GT guarantees an exhilarating drive. Not to be the most powerful in class but with everyday usability and civility in mind, it can accelerate from 0-60mph in 7.4 seconds and has a top speed of 143mph.

Re-tuned suspension ensures that the pro_cee’d GT is more than capable of handling its impressive power and torque outputs – increased damper rebound and compression rates,  stiffer springs and bushes and a larger rear anti-roll bar are joined by stylish 18-inch alloy wheels shod with Michelin Pilot Sport 3 tyres.

The steering has been tuned for a more direct and sporting feel, the brakes – 300mm ventilated at the front and 262mm at the rear – are the largest of any fitted to the cee’d range.

Truley Dressed to thrill: GT gets a unique look inside and out

The unique front-end treatment introduces a lower, broader bumper and air dam and a wide central lower air intake to supply additional cooling air to the high-performance turbocharged engine, underscored by a red trim line which emphasises the wide and sporty track. This is flanked on either side by high-gloss black inserts housing the GT’s unique ‘ice-cube’ LED daytime running lamps and foglights. The high-gloss black theme is continued on the graphite chrome-framed main radiator grille – with Kia’s family ‘tiger-nose’ outline. The grille includes a smart ‘GT’ badge on the black high-gloss mesh.

From the rear, the broad stance of the pro_cee’d is evident in its bold shoulders and steeply angled tailgate glass, but for the GT this is further emphasised by a diffuser section in the lower edge of the rear bumper, separating the dual sports exhaust outlets. The rear number plate is framed in high-gloss black and straddled by a vertical reversing light and reflectors, while the combination lamp units are LEDs which give the car a unique signature at night, or when braking. There is a ‘GT’ badge on the tailgate.

The already sporty side profile of the pro_cee’d is given even greater sense of purpose by bold side sill mouldings and special graphite grey ground-effect 18-inch alloy wheels tightly encased by the bodywork. Red brake callipers front and rear are a clear sign of the GT’s performance credentials, while the premium quality of the car is emphasised by a chrome strip running around the side windows, and the folding mirrors with LED indicator lights.

The performance-oriented exterior design is echoed inside the all-black five-seat cabin. The driver and front passenger are gripped by Recaro sports seats – for the first time in a Kia – adorned with ‘GT’ and ‘Recaro’ logos.  Power-adjustable lumbar support is fitted to both front seats. The upholstery is part leather and part suede, and there is red contrast stitching on the seats, steering wheel, gear shifter and door trims. The leather steering wheel also features perforated grip areas and an overstitched ‘GT’ logo, and there are stainless steel pedals with non-slip rubber inserts. High-gloss black features on the air vent surrounds, front console tray and door trims add a premium flourish which is echoed in the stainless steel kick plates on the door sills.

Kia’s familiar three-dial sporty instrument layout is enhanced by a TFT LCD multi-function high-definition display which allows the driver to switch between analogue-type or GT performance digital information. The latter shows the car’s speed, engine torque, turbo boost pressure and engine coolant temperature as well as important trip information. It can display speed in miles per hour or kilometres per hour. A ‘GT’ button on the steering wheel allows the driver to change the display without taking a hand off the wheel.

Two trim lines – and a very special introductory model

Two extensively equipped variants of the pro_cee’d GT – the ‘GT’ and ‘GT Tech’ – will be available in the UK, but to mark the introduction of Kia’s first performance model there will be a limited production launch version, the ‘GT 1st Edition’. Just 500 examples of this uniquely specified car will be produced, with 50 to be assigned to the UK market.

The ‘GT’ is the entry-level version yet it comes with anything other than a base-level specification.  The exterior benefits from a number of unique styling touches including new front and rear bumper designs, side sill mouldings, dual exhausts, ‘ice-cube’ LED daytime running lights and 18-inch graphite grey ground-effect alloy wheels with red brake callipers.

On the inside the ‘GT’ receives Recaro seats finished in leather and suede, and with power lumbar adjustment, with red stitching that is also applied to the leather steering wheel and gear knob, a black headlining and several gloss black trim items.

Providing driver comfort and convenience are a host of standard items, including air conditioning, cruise control and speed limiter, automatic lights, cornering lights, reversing sensors, Bluetooth phone connectivity with music streaming and voice recognition, a six speaker radio/CD player with iPod connectivity, a unique ‘GT’ TFT LCD dash binnacle display, electric windows, electrically operated and heated folding mirrors with puddle lights and privacy glass on the rear windows and tailgate.

Pro ceed GTThe comprehensive safety specification includes Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Vehicle Stability Management (VSM), Hill-start Assist Control (HAC), anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BAS), six airbags with a cut-off switch for the front passenger’s seat, a seat-belt reminder warning, impact-sensing door unlocking and ISOFIX child-seat mounting points.

The ‘GT Tech’ adds a seven-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation, European mapping and full UK postcode recognition, a reversing camera display integrated into the navigation screen, heated front seats and a heated steering wheel, an engine start/stop button with a smart entry system, exterior door handle illumination, rain-sensing front wipers, dual-zone automatic air conditioning with an ioniser, an automatic de-fog system, an automatic-dimming rear-view mirror and xenon adaptive headlights with headlight washers and automatic levelling, in place of the cornering lights on the GT.

The ‘GT’ and ‘GT Tech’ are available in a choice of three colours – Track Red and Fusion White metallic, both of which are exclusive to the GT, as well as Phantom Black metallic.

The ‘GT 1st Edition’ will contain all the features fitted to the ‘GT Tech’, plus a number of distinctive signature additions. These include high-gloss black inserts in the 18-inch alloy wheels, high-gloss black door mirror casings, a tilting and sliding electric sunroof with an automatic roller blind, red ambient lighting with front footwell illumination, floor mats with red contrast stitching and ‘GT’ illuminated sill scuff plates with edition numbering as standard.  The ‘GT 1st Edition’ comes with Fusion White metallic paintwork as standard.

T-GDi – turbocharging and direct injection

The pro_cee’d GT is powered by a new turbocharged version of Kia’s 1.6-litre ‘Gamma’ engine, developing 201bhp and 265Nm of torque. It is the first turbocharged petrol engine to be offered by Kia in the UK.  A normally aspirated version of the direct-injection ‘Gamma’ engine is already available in the pro_cee’d, but the addition of an exhaust-driven turbocharger raises its power output by 51 per cent and the amount of torque it develops by 61 per cent for truly scintillating performance.

The T-GDi (Turbocharged Gasoline Direct injection) engine develops its 201bhp at 6,000rpm, but what really gives the GT its instantaneous response and rapid acceleration is the 265Nm of torque available without interruption from 1,750rpm to 4,500rpm. The pro_cee’d GT accelerates from 37 to 60mph in fourth gear in only 5.4 seconds and from 50 to 75mph in fifth gear in 7.3 seconds – indicators of the supreme flexibility and immediacy of the T-GDi engine. More than 80 per cent of maximum torque is available from less than 1,500rpm. The 0-60mph acceleration time is 7.4 seconds.

Performance benefits from the integration of the twin-scroll turbocharger into the exhaust manifold, a design which improves responsiveness – eliminating the ‘turbo lag’ between the driver pressing the accelerator and the turbocharger building up boost pressure – while simultaneously improving gas flow and reducing heat losses for maximum efficiency. The GT may be first and foremost a performance car, but it also contributes towards Kia’s goal of improving its fleet’s average environmental credentials thanks to the combination of small engine capacity, direct fuel injection and exhaust-driven turbocharging. The GT’s fuel consumption on the official combined cycle is 38.2mpg, while CO2 emissions are 171g/km.

The engine drives through a slick-shifting six-speed manual transmission featuring revised ratios and a lower final drive to allow the GT to make the most of its torque with minimal fuel consumption.

The pro_cee’d GT’s big brother the five-door cee’d GT will follow early 2014!

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