Subscriber? Login here

Contact us for full library access on: 0330 0020 227 or click here

Kia Carens

SOUTH KOREA GETS SERIOUS (some text hidden)

By Jonathan Crouch

Kia's improved third generation Carens is the South Korean maker's most serious stab yet at the People Carrying market. Jonathan Crouch checks it out.

Ten Second Reviewword count: 68

With smart looks, a practical interior, great build quality and solid engineering, Kia's improved third generation Carens is a 7-seat compact MPV is well worth your attention. Especially now that it's been enhanced with smarter looks, greater efficiency and improved media connectivity. Though well appointed, it offers strong value and efficient running costs. In other words, you get pretty much everything families are looking for in this segment.

Backgroundword count: 151

Look at what most growing families actually need and this is it: a compactly-proportioned 7-seat MPV. Look though, at what most growing families actually want and a people carrier of this kind with a Kia badge on the bonnet has rarely been top of their shopping lists. If this South Korean maker is to continue its ambitious rise in sales, it's time for that to change - with this car, the third generation Carens. This third generation Carens needed to offer a big step forward, with desirable styling, impressive quality and hi-tech engineware. It needed to be practical too, given that the deletion of the big Sedona MPV from Kia's model line-up meant that going forward, this would be the only family-sized people carrier the brand would offer. Hence the fact that for the first time, this car is being offered only with 7-seats. So can it deliver? Let's find out.

Driving Experienceword count: 207

On the road, you get a firm set-up that deliberately distances this Kia from softer-sprung but more roll-sensitive rivals like Citroen's Grand C4 Picasso and Renault's Grand Scenic. Not that you should get me wrong here: if you're running late for the school play and throw the thing hard into a bend, you'll get plenty more bodyroll than you would in, say a rival Ford Grand C-MAX. But in normal day-to-day motoring, most families should be quite happy with the ride and handling compromise that's been reached here. There's also the standard inclusion of Kia's Flex Steer system so you can alter the weight of the steering. Under the bonnet, buyers get to choose between a 133bhp 1.6-litre GDi petrol unit or a 1.7-litre CRDi turbodiesel, offered in 114 or 134bhp states of tune, the latter available with the option of a 6-speed auto gearbox. Most will be choosing between the GDi petrol unit or the lower-powered diesel, both capable of around 112mph flat out. On paper, the diesel gets there in a more leisurely fashion, the 0-62mph sprint taking 12.6s as opposed to 10.9s but in practice, the CRDi model's greater reserves of torque (there's 95Nm more of it) make it feel a more willing companion.

To see the full road test text contact us on 0330 0020 227

Pictures (high res disabled)

Statistics (subset of data only)

Min

Max

0-60 mph (s):

10

12.6

Combined mpg:

44.1

61.4

CO2 (g/km):

120

Extra urban mpg:

53.3

67.3

Height (mm):

1605

Insurance group:

12

16

... and 8 other stats available

Scoring (subset of scores)

Category:

Performance
50%
Handling
60%
Comfort
70%
Space
70%
Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

Why you need us if you're a...

Why video content is crucial on your website

Click to view the reports:

Mobile
Narrow
Narrower
Normal
Wide