Kia launches Cerato hatchback in New Zealand

Kia launches Cerato hatchback in New Zealand

The long-awaited 2011 model Kia Cerato hatchback has just been launched for the New Zealand market.

There’s a good serving of new technology in the hatched Cerato with the 5-door Cerato coming with a 6-speed sequential shift automatic transmission, fitted as standard on all models and sporty steering wheel paddle gear shifters on the top version.

The 5-door Cerato hatchback joins the 4-door sedan and 2- door Koup to boost the range of mid-size cars, all powered by the Theta II, four-cylinder, 2-litre CVVT engine.

According to Kia Motors New Zealand General Manager Todd McDonald, the new Cerato hatchback “is designed to appeal especially to consumers who prefer a five-door hatchback for its style and enhanced practicality, in particular those with young families.”

Whilst sharing the same front profile, overall width, height and wheelbase as the sedan, the new hatchback’s roof, rear side panels, C-pillar, tailgate, rear bumper, light clusters and roof spoiler are all new.

At the front, bold styling incorporates a new radiator grille, new lower air-intake grille and new-shape fog lamps.  The door mirrors now come with LED repeaters and the two hatchback models sold here in New Zealand, LX and SX, wear re-styled ‘double five-spoke’ 16-inch and 17-inch respectively.  The rear combination lamps, which have etching-processed lenses, are split across the tailgate shut line and a sporty rear diffuser allows the exhaust tailpipe to be displayed.

In addition to its high standard equipment level that echoes the sedan and Koup models, the 2011 Cerato 5-door’s interior offers customers several new comfort and convenience features, depending on model. Among these are steering wheel ‘paddle shifters’ are fitted for the first time with the automatic transmission in the SX model and Bluetooth hands-free for mobile phone use, which comes with both models.

To maximise cabin versatility, the Cerato hatchback rear seat cushion and backrest are split 60/40. Although the overall interior height of the Cerato hatchback and sedan is the same, the extended roofline of the 5-door creates an extra 20mm of rear seat headroom.

Both hatchback models are powered by the 1,998 cc Theta II engine, which is matched, as standard, to the new 6-speed automatic transmission.

The Cerato 5-door’s suspension system has been further fine tuned by Kia Motors engineers in Australasia to ensure the ride and handling balance is suited to the driving environments found in this part of the world. It follows similar work undertaken on the recently introduced Kia Sportage.  Also new is electric power-assisted steering (MDPS — motor driven power steering), which results in an estimated 2-to-3% fuel-saving.

Standard safety systems include ESC (electronic stability control), active front headrests and dual front/side and curtain airbags.

Both Cerato hatchback models feature a strong list of equipment, including keyless remote central locking with alarm, power windows, steering wheel-mounted cruise control/audio controls/Bluetooth, alloy wheels, electric/heated door mirrors incorporating LED indicators and leather steering wheel/gearshift trim.

The SX model gains leather upholstery, reach and tilt adjustable steering column (LX is also reach and tilt adjustable), paddle gear shifters on the steering wheel, chrome door handles and exhaust tip, climate control (LX has manual air), trip computer, CD changer with audio system and reverse warning sensors.

Prices for the new Kia Cerato 5-door hatchback are $30,490+ORC for the LX and $34,490+ORC for the SX. The pricing includes a 5-year/100,000km warranty programme with 24-hour roadside assist, free 1500km first service and the all-new Kia Incident Care, which provides a free service to Kia owners involved in an accident.

Check back soon for a full Car and SUV review of the Kia Cerato hatchback.

Click here to read a review of the Kia Cerato sedan.

Click here to read a review of the Kia Cerato Koup.

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