Monday, 28 January 2013 10:51 AM
Soon all hot hatches will be powered by (relatively) small capacity turbocharged petrol engines, and throughout 2013 we’ll get to work out which manufacturer has managed to get the best bang per capacity buck from their new turbo engines. Smooth, torquey and with enough top-end-fizz to make for an exciting drive; this new hot hatch era of economical petrol-turbo performance should be a blast.
Kia’s new 4-cylinder, 1.6-litre GDI turbocharged petrol motor manages a whole 201bhp from its 1600cc, with a turbo strapped on the side. Not bad at all. Its torque figure of 265Nm is also respectable, but surely we’d expect a bit better than the to-62mph sprint time of 7.9 seconds with 201bhp on tap?
Also important will be some substantial in-gear torque – through the front wheels and a 6-speed manual gearbox – that heat-loving drivers will be looking for, rather than another gear ratio to get the acceleration going. Torque performance is supposed to be the beauty of turbocharging.
Both the cee’d GT and pro cee’d GT models will get the same engine and transmission set up, with both models hitting the same performance stats. No word on a top speed as yet.
Designed in Europe by Chief Design Officer, Peter Schreyer’s team, both new GT models (3-door and 5-door) will enjoy a sharpening of styling, deeper bumpers and side skirts, LED daytime running lights, dual-exit exhaust pipes, Recaro seating, 18-inch alloy wheels and red brake calipers. Suspension will be lower and firmer, too.
Sound good so far? Well, we’ve not got long to wait for a test drive, with production beginning mid-May and the pro cee’d GT going on sale in the UK in the summer, the cee’d GT following towards the end of the year. No official word on prices and full specifications as yet, but expect to pay around the early £20k mark for starters; around 250bhp Ford Focus ST money.
By Daniel Anslow