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Kia Ceed Review

Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed
Kia Ceed

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Kia Ceed

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Kia Ceed

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  • Launched in 2018
  • Family hatch
  • Petrol, Diesel
  • Launch year
    2018
  • Body type
    Family hatch
  • Fuel type
    Petrol, Diesel

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Andy Brady

Written by

Andy Brady

00/10
heycar rating
Decent (but not exciting) hatchback

Best bits

  • Good value for money with lengthy standard equipment list
  • Cheap to run with frugal engines
  • Transferable seven-year warranty

Not so great

  • Not as refined as a Volkswagen Golf
  • Not as cheap as you might expect
  • Automatic gearbox is a bit frustrating

Read by

Kia Ceed 68 plate

Overall verdict

Kia Ceed interior dash

On the inside

Kia Ceed on road

Driving

Kia Ceed static

How much does it cost to run

Kia Ceed GT rear

Prices, versions and specification

Overall verdict on the Kia Ceed

"The Kia Ceed used to be the equivalent to Tesco own-brand baked beans. It did the same job as rivals like the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra but for less money and less charisma - if it’s possible to have less charisma than a Vauxhall Astra…"

Kia Ceed 68 plate

So you might be shocked to find that the Kia Ceed is no longer cheaper than its mainstream contemporaries. But it’s also just as good in many areas as, say, a Volkswagen Golf. It’s loaded with kit, too, with even the most affordable models featuring a decent infotainment system, a reversing camera and alloy wheels. Chuck in a transferable seven-year warranty and suddenly the Ceed makes a very strong case for itself as a used bargain.


We’ll start with one of the Ceed’s best features: its smart and practical interior. It’s mostly devoid of cheap plastics and genuinely comparable to a Volkswagen Golf’s, if not as plush as the Mazda 3’s cabin. Most models even come with a slick 10.25-inch touchscreen navigation system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This has a logical layout and sharp graphics, while handy physical shortcut buttons make it slightly easier to use on the move.


The interior is fairly spacious, especially for front-seat passengers, although full-sized adults in the back might get a bit grumpy after a few hours. There’s plenty of useful storage compartments and the boot is slightly bigger than a Ford Focus or Volkswagen Golf, although you’d probably have to park the cars alongside each other to notice.


To drive, the Kia Ceed is pretty unremarkable, but most will see that as a good thing. You don’t really want a car like this to be remarkable to drive. The steering steers, the tyres grip and the brakes stop. It doesn’t lean considerably in the corners while the supple suspension does a pretty good job of soaking up lumps and bumps. You’ll notice a bit of road and wind noise at high speed - certainly more than in a Volkswagen Golf - but it’s not enough to really irritate.


Anyone looking for something a bit sportier is catered for with the Ceed GT, which comes with a powerful 1.6-litre petrol engine. It’s a bit of a silly car, though - and not in a fun Mazda MX-5 way. It’s noisier, thirstier and less comfortable than a standard Ceed, without being as good to drive as a Volkswagen Golf GTI or Ford Focus ST. It’s a bit pointless, really.


More importantly, the Kia Ceed is a safe purchase, with a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating and a long list of techy safety features as standard. Isofix points in the back will help when fitting child seats, too.


The Kia Ceed is no longer a budget option and, in many ways, is just as good as a comparable Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf or Mazda 3. You get lots for your money, with a well-finished interior and decent practicality. It’s nothing special to drive but it feels safe and assured, while the engine line-up means it ought to be cheap to run  - provided you avoid the pointless Ceed GT.


If you're looking for the older version, you need our Kia Ceed (2012-2018) review.

Ready to get your top quality Kia Ceed?

  • All cars come with a warranty
  • Selected dealers only
  • All quality checked

Kia Ceed

1.0T GDi ISG 2 NAV 5dr

  • 2019
  • 10,450 miles
  • Shelly Motors Kia Epsom
  • Surrey, KT199QG
Price:£13,776
PCP: £226.21/mo

Representative example: Contract Length: 36 months, 35 Monthly Payments: £226.21, Customer Deposit: £2,066.00, Total Deposit: £2,066.40, Optional Final Payment: £6,101.93, Total Charge For Credit: £2,309.68, Total Amount Payable: £16,085.68, Representative APR: 8.9%, Interest Rate (Fixed): 8.9%, Excess Mileage Charge: 4.89ppm, Mileage Per Annum: 10,000

Kia Ceed

1.4T GDi ISG GT-Line 5dr

  • 2020
  • 3,450 miles
  • Gravells Kia Swansea
  • Glamorgan, SA79FJ
Price:£16,895
PCP: £258.26/mo

Representative example: Contract Length: 36 months, 35 Monthly Payments: £258.26, Customer Deposit: £2,534.00, Total Deposit: £2,534.25, Optional Final Payment: £8,615.00, Total Charge For Credit: £3,293.35, Total Amount Payable: £20,188.35, Representative APR: 9.9%, Interest Rate (Fixed): 9.45%, Excess Mileage Charge: 4ppm, Mileage Per Annum: 10,000

Is the Kia Ceed right for you?

The Kia Ceed is a very likeable car. It has a perfectly pleasant interior and it feels reassuringly solid to drive. The engines are very good, although they’re let down slightly by the stodgy gearboxes (both automatic and manual). It’ll be cheap to run, though, with decent fuel economy, low servicing costs and a long warranty.


While the Ceed struggles to excel in any particular area (and it’s not the bargain it once was), it’s all brought together in a perfectly decent package. Rivals might be more appealing in certain areas, but we doubt you’d regret buying a Kia Ceed.

What’s the best Kia Ceed model/engine to choose?

You don’t need to spend big bucks to get a decent Kia Ceed. The most affordable 2 trim level will tick all the boxes for a lot of buyers, but we reckon middling models like the Kia Ceed 2 Nav or 3 represent the best value for money. GT-Line and GT-Line S models are loaded with equipment, but you’ll pay strong money for them.


In terms of engines, don’t bother with a diesel unless you cover a lot of miles. The petrols are efficient and better to drive. The standard 1.0-litre petrol is eager, if a little noisy, and will be fine for a lot of people. If you need a bit more performance (particularly for motorway driving), the 1.4 would be a better option. Avoid the 1.6 GT unless you’re really averse to proper hot hatches like the Golf GTI.

What other cars are similar to the Kia Ceed?

The big contenders in the family car class include the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf, SEAT Leon, Mazda 3 and Vauxhall Astra. It’s not far off being as good as a Golf, although the Focus pips it in terms of driving enjoyment. 


The Mazda 3 feels more special, but the Ceed is a decent alternative to the Leon. You could also consider the Skoda Octavia if practicality’s important, and then there’s the Hyundai i30 - a car that’s closely related to the Ceed. Underdog alternatives include the Honda Civic and Peugeot 308.

Learn more

Kia Ceed interior dash

On the inside

Kia Ceed on road

Driving

Kia Ceed static

How much does it cost to run

Kia Ceed GT rear

Prices, versions and specification

Ask the heycar experts: common questions

Is the Kia Ceed a good car?

Although it's not as cheap as it was, it's still a good car that's well finished.

Dan Powell

Answered by

Dan Powell

Is the Kia Ceed reliable?

The Kia Ceed comes with a seven-year/100,000-mile warranty

Georgia Petrie

Answered by

Georgia Petrie

How big is the boot on the Kia Ceed?

The Kia Ceed has 395 litres of boot space with the seats up, and 1291 litres with the seats down.

Russell Campbell

Answered by

Russell Campbell

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