Reader's test: Kia Cerato 1.6
I bought my demo 2010 1.6 (91kW) Kia Cerato with only 6000km on the clock with a full four-year or 90 000km service plan upgraded to a maintenance plan and a five-year or 150 000km warranty.
Some of the standard features on the car, to name but a few, are ABS, EBD, side impact bars in the doors, six airbags with full side curtain airbags, crumple zones, high-level brake light, side indicators in the mirrors, auto lock when accelerating, auto unlock impact sensors, electric windows front and back, electric mirrors, fog lights, trip computer, rear arm rest with two cup holders, central locking and a 415-litre boot.
I find myself constantly trying to wipe the smile off my face while driving my Kia home from work in peak-hour traffic, sitting in a comfortable, spacious and air-conditioned cabin with a stylish dashboard that has a pleasantly upmarket feel, my six-speaker sound system in the back ground being controlled by the standard multifunction steering controls.
CATCH A GLIMPSE
Passing the shop windows and catching a glimpse of the sporty outlines of the car on its standard set of stylish five-spoke 16” alloy wheels, I can’t help but look at the drivers behind me in my electrochromatic rear view mirror (also standard) sitting in their German cars with basically all the same features as my Kia but not smiling or looking as relaxed as I am.
I work in shipping, so it can’t be that I don't work as hard as they do, right?
Could it be that the drivers of the German cars know that even while they are driving the much more renowned brands that don't even consider my Kia as competition, they know that they could be just as happy and comfortable as I am for a lot less money... ?
Probably not! But I know it and it’s just a matter of time before everyone else knows it.
Korean cars can no longer be shrugged off by the brand-loyal South African public as cheap imports. A good example being Hyundai and now Kia clearly flexing their muscles with Peter Schreyer heading their designs and a safety and specification list as long as NBA player John Riek's arms, while backing their brand with the best warranty and service plans in the market and then offering it at - dare I say - the most competitive price.
Anyone not considering the new Kia Cerato when purchasing a new car would be a fool and I'm glad I'm not one of them.
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