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Car Review

Kia XCeed review

£20,570 - £35,000
Published: 02 Dec 2022


What is it like to drive?

Being around £7k cheaper than the PHEV like-for-like, you’d imagine most people will opt for the 1.5-litre petrol XCeed, especially as it’s the higher performing of the two available powertrains. It’s a commendable all-rounder, revving surprisingly keenly for acceleration when you need it and keeping reasonably schtum at a motorway cruise. Fuel economy is rated at 46.3mpg on the smallest 16-inch wheels, and in our experience you’ll get into the 40s without any trouble.

And the plug-in hybrid?

Obviously you’ve no hope of hitting the ‘official’ figure of 201.7mpg, with your average fuel economy entirely dependent on how often you plug in and replenish the 8.9kWh battery. But once the cells are depleted you can expect to see economy in the mid-50s. Not bad at all, though we do wonder why Kia has declined to add a hybrid of the non-plug-in variety into the line-up: not everyone has their own charging point, y’know.

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As far as driving goes the powertrain blends engine and motor pretty well, though the auto can’t match the manual for responsiveness or satisfaction. At least it handles hard acceleration pretty well, unlike some of the CVT transmissions deployed by other carmakers (cough, Toyota) which have a tendency to send the revs soaring. Not good for the ears, that.

What if I want my stylish crossover to corner in a stylish manner?

Then you’ll be disappointed. Well, not disappointed. But the XCeed isn’t going to put a smile on your face. Having been raised, the suspension is quite a bit softer than in the Ceed hatchback, so there’s a modicum of extra lean through the corners. However the steering is weighted well enough that it won’t wallow through bends, so that’s something.

But don’t expect anything like the feel and feedback that you get from, say, a Ford Puma. The chassis doesn’t give you any encouragement to do anything vaguely resembling ‘fun’. Shame really.

Any word on ride comfort?

Just the one? How about ‘fine’? Being softer than the hatch is actually to the car’s benefit as it promotes a more relaxed style of driving, and you’d have to drive a long way indeed before succumbing to Numb Bum Syndrome. The suspension deals with rough roads well enough: just don’t expect to glide over potholes without noticing.

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Highlights from the range

the fastest

Kia Xceed 1.5T GDI ISG 3 5DR
  • 0-628.7s
  • CO2
  • BHP158
  • MPG
  • Price£25,560

the cheapest

Kia Xceed 1.0T GDi ISG 2 5dr
  • 0-6210.9s
  • CO2124.0g/km
  • BHP118
  • MPG52.3
  • Price£20,570

the greenest

Kia Xceed 1.6 GDI Phev 3 5DR DCT
  • 0-6210.6s
  • CO232.0g/km
  • BHP139
  • MPG
  • Price£32,890

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