All-new Kia Pro_cee’d GT Turbo – Reboot Your Thinking
April 10, 2014
All-new Kia Pro_cee’d GT Turbo – Reboot Your Thinking
Kia’s first hot hatch has arrived in New Zealand.
Built in Europe and showcasing the latest turbocharged technology, crisp handling and cool styling, the all-new Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is Kia’s most overtly sporting model to date.
And yet, while it pushes the performance envelope for the Kia brand, the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is designed not to be the most powerful in class, but with everyday usability and civility in mind.
“This car is both exciting and satisfying to drive, which is not always the case with some high performance sports models,” says Todd McDonald, General Manager of Kia Motors New Zealand.
“The aim was to produce a car that is worthy of the GT nameplate – a Gran Turismo that is designed for high-speed, long distance driving. It’s utterly controllable and refined – very pleasing to drive, in fact.”
The Kia Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is being introduced here as a stablemate to the Kia Cerato Koup Turbo. Both models feature the turbocharged version of Kia’s 1.6-litre ‘Gamma’ direct-injection engine, developing 150kW and 265Nm of torque. Kia Motors provide the Koup for those who prefer an automatic transmission, whilst the new Pro_cee’d GT comes with a slick 6-speed manual.
“The market for hot hatches leans more towards male buyers, with a preference for manual gearbox and we’ve tailored this car to suit,” adds Mr McDonald.
The single model 3-door Kia Pro_cee’d GT Turbo goes on sale in New Zealand with a recommended retail price of $43,990 + ORC, compared to the Kia Cerato Koup Turbo SX at $42,490 + ORC.
While both are sporting models built on the same underpinnings, the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is the product of Kia’s European design team, while the Koup comes out of Kia’s Californian design studio.
Peter Schreyer, Kia’s Chief Design Officer explains the philosophy behind the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo: “This car embodies emotion and energy through and through. You know from a single glance that this is a car you want to drive, not just own.
“We pictured a world-class sprinter crouched in the starting blocks and our eyes were drawn to their bulging shoulder muscles, full of power and pace, ready to be unleashed. That’s what we wanted to capture – all that performance potential, just waiting to be unleashed.”
The design of the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo features a lower, broader bumper/air dam and a wide central lower air intake, underscored by a red trim line that 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 fog lights.
From the rear, the broad stance of the Pro_cee’d is evident in its bold shoulders and steeply angled tailgate glass, further emphasised by a diffuser section in the lower edge of the rear bumper, separating the dual sports exhaust outlets. The combination LED lamp units give the car a unique signature at night, or when braking.
The performance-oriented exterior is echoed inside the all-black five-seat cabin. The driver and front passenger are gripped by 3-way adjustable heated Recaro sports seats – for the first time in a Kia – adorned with ‘GT’ and ‘Recaro’ logos and upholstered in part leather and part suede, with red contrast stitching on the seats, steering wheel, gear shifter and door trims. The heated leather steering wheel also features perforated grip areas and an overstitched ‘GT’ logo, and there are alloy sports pedals with non-slip rubber inserts.
Kia’s familiar three-dial sporty instrument layout is enhanced by a TFT LCD multi-function high-definition display that 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. A ‘GT’ button on the steering wheel allows the driver to change the display without taking a hand off the wheel.
The focus of the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is on refined performance. The T-GDi (Turbocharged GasolineDirect injection) engine develops its 150kW at 6000rpm, 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 80-120km/h in fifth gear in 7.3 seconds – an indication of the superb flexibility and immediacy of the T-GDi engine. More than 80% of maximum torque is available from less than 1,500rpm. It can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 7.7 seconds on the way to a top speed of 230km/h.
Performance benefits from the integration of the twin-scroll turbocharger into the exhaust manifold, a design that improves responsiveness, eliminating ‘turbo lag’, while simultaneously improving gas flow and reducing heat losses for maximum efficiency. The GT may be first and foremost an engaging 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 combined fuel consumption is 7.4 L/100km, 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 sporting nature of the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is enhanced with the European preference for independent suspension at the front and rear. This has been further refined as part of the ANZAC suspension programme to suit local driving conditions through increased damper rebound and compression rates, stiffer springs and bushes, plus a larger rear anti-roll bar. The stylish 18-inch alloy wheels are shod with Michelin Pilot Sport 3 tyres specially selected to suit the car’s performance and are nicely set off by the red painted brake calipers visible through the spokes of the wheels.
The 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, seat-belt reminder, impact-sensing door unlocking and three child seat anchors, plus two ISOFIX child-seat mounting.
Typical of Kia, the Pro_cee’d GT Turbo is very well equipped and comes with push-button start and proximity key, dual-zone climate control, electric windows, electrically operated and heated folding mirrors with puddle lights, anti-theft alarm, cruise control, along with Kia’s acclaimed 5-year warranty programme that incorporates 24-hour roadside assistance.