Tag Archive | "GT"

Hot Wheels From Kia


In the crowded hot hatch sector, enthusiastic drivers have never had so much choice. All the usual suspects are there sporting GTI badges or something similar. Some are better than others; most are pretty good. So why, it is fair to wonder, would Kia try to elbow their way into this testosterone filled motoring mosh pit.

Let’s be frank here. When Kia first appeared on the market they were not, to be charitable, very good cars. Those days are now gone and their automotive offerings are very good indeed; excellent value and a decent drive have meant that the brand has burgeoned in popularity with their range of good value family cars of which the Cee’d stands out. Add to that an impressive seven year warranty across the range and business is looking sweet.

So why then has the company decided to enter the fray up against some mighty and established competition? The Kia pro_cee’d GT goes on sale in three-door form next month and will cost around £20,000. A little more if the buyer opts for the three or five year all inclusive service and care package which looks to be good value. A five door is expected next year.KIA2 Hot Wheels From Kia

OK; so it’s a good looking hot hatch, competitively priced but what makes it special? 0-60mph is achieved in a decent, but not class leading, 7.4 seconds – achieved by flooring the 1.6L T-GDi engine. (Don’t worry – it’s not a diesel, it’s a Turbocharged Gasoline Direct Injection). This develops 201bhp at 6,000rpm. This is the first problem.

Just as an example the refined SEAT Ibiza Cupra produces less brake horse power but is actually faster, as are most of the opposition. Buyers select these flyers because they deliver great performance for relatively low cost and it is hard to see how Kia can make any inroads into the sector. The GT has a six-speed ’box and there is no paddle option which seems like an oversight.

That said, this car is very well priced and has the Kia seven year warranty which helps to make it a more attractive proposition. Also, it could well appeal to the keen driver who wants a sporty drive but still expects comfort and practicality; something, it has to be said, that is not available on some of the more hairy-chested hot hatches. Insurance is likely to be more keenly priced as well, so maybe KIA are on to something after all. Let’s hope the car is well received upon release.

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The Need For Bentley Speed


At a time when motorists are really feeling the pinch it seems strange to be announcing luxury new cars. We’ve had the new Bugatti Galibier confirmed and the latest Range Rover announced. Now there’s a new Bentley. Well, not entirely new but rather a major upgrade to grace the pages of our car blog.

Someone must have had a word in the collective ear at the Bentley works in Crewe a few years ago because the cars these days are just a bit special. Once a prestigious, if stately brand, their recent cars are becoming more and more desirable to driving enthusiasts – those that can afford it, anyway. The photo shows just how sleek this famous name has become.

Ladies and gentlemen – introducing the Bentley Continental GT Speed. This is the new four wheel drive flagship of the range. Capable of 205 miles per hour this is the fastest road car that Bentley have built. This is thanks to a six litre twin-turbo W12 engine pushing out a not inconsiderable 616bhp with 590lb.ft of torque available throughout most of the rev range.

All this power is delivered through a new 8-speed ZF close-ratio auto ‘box and engine software described as state-of-the-art. All this adds up to a 0-60mph time of just four seconds – impressive for such a big car. It will whisk you to 100mph in a breath-taking 9 seconds. Impressive stuff. As you would expect, an enhanced chassis is matched with uprated suspension, which also lowers the car by 10mm all round, and re-tuned steering. The 4×4 system is weighted 60:40 biased to the rear wheels which should give an accomplished ride in even the worst of road and weather conditions.

To make the distinction clear from other, similar cars in the Bentley range the GT Speed sports unique 9.5J x 21-inch ten spoke wheels, various trim upgrades and exclusive tail pipes. Inside, the luxury continues, featuring as it does the Mulliner Driving Specification, including quilted and perforated leather seats and a variety of optional finishes including the latest infotainment devices, as you would expect. Despite the venerable name this car is the epitome of a contemporary sports coupé .

If you are in the mood to cast off the pall of gloom hanging over British motoring and can afford the frankly not unreasonable £130k or so for this hunk of automotive beauty then orders are being taken now with delivery starting around October time. Form an orderly queue.

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bG9nZ2VyX0xvZ28uanBnIjtpOjI7czo3MzoiaHR0cDovL21vdG9yYmxvZ2dlci5jby51ay93cC1jb250ZW50L3dvb191cGxvYWRzLzMtTW90b3JfQmxvZ2dlcl9Mb2dvLnBuZyI7fTwvbGk+PGxpPjxzdHJvbmc+d29vX3ZpZGVvX2NhdGVnb3J5PC9zdHJvbmc+IC0gQXV0byBOZXdzPC9saT48L3VsPg==