10th Mar 2009, 12:57

And Hyundai-Kia won the manufacturer of the year award by Autocar...

12th Mar 2009, 04:38

Whilst Hyundai-KIA awards are commendable and the cars are value for money, a little caution on praise. I hope Kia, especially, do read the various forums on the net. They vigorously expound their 7 year warranty, but its application in practice invites a lot of hassle.

KIA Korea divide the world up into regions, and Western Europe is one such. They invite complaints, but by the time it reaches them, it's a situation of conflict and despair. And what do they do, they send it back to the originating region to deal with!! Their warranty should be transparent across the region. I bought my CEED in the UK, but I would hate to have a warranty break-down in Western Europe, let alone in the UK. Their actions do not reflect their words, so to speak!!

14th Mar 2009, 07:15

Please could you expand on this? Are you saying that the warranty is not pan-European? What problems have you had?

Our experience of Kia is excellent - they corrected a minor fault on our Picanto under warranty very quickly and courteously.

14th Mar 2009, 10:55

Further explanation as requested. I thought KIA's warranty types were global W.R.T. their models, but readings and issues from the two forums I am familiar with, it does not appear to be so.



I have two pending issues. In one case I followed a Finnish recommendation, and with the other (issue reverted back to KIA UK from Korea), I have given up! I will accept though, that warranty work and satisfaction depends on the dealership.

3rd Apr 2009, 03:53

30 years ago buying a Japanese car was considered 2nd rate.

Honda and Toyota are now considered premium brands.

I have owned 2 Mercs a C200 then an E280 from new.

I would never, ever touch another Mercedes car, heavy, slow, eye wateringly expensive and the dealers are unhelpful and rubbish.

I haven't yet driven a Ceed, but it will be on my test drive list next time round.

16th Apr 2009, 14:25

Kia's and BMW's showrooms are commensurate with their customers. But also, the showrooms were not financed by the carmakers -- the dealers cough up the money to comply with what the carmaker dictates.

If Kia and Hyundai keep up their solid reliability ratings from the last 5 or so years, and with products like the Sonata or the i30, then they ARE now mainstream. Remember Skoda?

I have personally driven both BMW (E36, E46, 520i, 540i, 730i, 120i/d, 118d) and Hyundai (the latest Sonata V6, the older Sonata, the Getz) on several occasions, plus owned a few Audis ('81 Coupe, two 80s, and an A4), and they are different cars. Heck, the BMW and Audi A4 are different. But they are good in their own right, and they exist for a certain market.

But the standards are inching up. The VW Golf used to be a Corolla hatch substitute. But now, from how the door thunks shut to the material quality inside, it's honestly better than a Mercedes (!) A-class. Both the Sonata and Kia Magentis are NOT of the same level of fit, comfort, quietness, or material as, say, the old Picanto or Accent, they're two steps above. A Passat they aren't, but certainly not bad vs. mainstream Japanese sedans.

They're tuned for comfort rather than handling, and their doors shut more solid than any Mazda you can name (yes, even the first Mazda6, I tried.) If they get the Ford suspension guy to defect to them, they'll get ahead.

27th Apr 2009, 17:10

See results of the UKs 2009 yearly Driver Power owner satisfaction survey in Auto Express no.1059, where the Cee'd wins best car in compact family class, is 6th best car overall, and they quote:-

"It's one of the most significant results in Driver Power history! We knew that the Cee'd would represent a turning point for Kia, but jaws will drop at this result"

"Few would have expected it to push established rivals aside and achieve such an impressive debut"

"A fantastic third place for reliability makes the Cee'd the most dependable car in the class, while the same position for running costs proves it to be a shrewd purchase"

"Beaten into second (in class) is the VW Golf. It is a position VW will be hoping the MkVI can better next year"

The benchmark MkV Golf was ranked 22nd place overall (49th for reliability) and the C-Class Mercedes was in 51st place (66th for reliability) against the Cee'd's 6th place overall and 3rd for reliability.

Any other Kia Cee'd critics may be interested to see how their Audi, BMW whatever rates in said survey, too.. it is not my opinion, it is the opinion of owners themselves.

My friend raves about his Cee'd SW CRDi Sport as being far superior to the previous new A3 TDI and X-Type Estate Diesel Sport he owned. Unlike these cars, the Kia has had no issues at all; no rattles, squeaks or any snagging-he has not been back to the dealer once.

If only everything in life was as reliable as a Kia Cee'd.

28th Apr 2009, 06:13

The expectations of Kia owners and BMW/Mercedes owners are a world apart.

Kia owners partake in basic A-B motoring, with little care for image.

BMW owners partake in technologically advanced, executive motoring. Obviously they care for image.

28th Apr 2009, 06:42

The survey showed which owners were most satisfied with their cars, all things considered including price, quality and image. I understand that some owners of Kias may be less obsessive about certain things than BMW owners, but bear in mind many Cee'd owners have downsized from more expensive cars (as is the current trend) and so will compare them to their previous car - just like my friend with the X Type.

The Cee'd is unlike the other Kia models and has excellent quality throughout due to the state of the art production line in Zilnia. With new 1.4SR models from about £9200 off the net, this car even undercuts the best in class supermini. The top spec 2.0 CRDi Sport models are more, but still undercut the rival cars, and still have better satisfaction results.

If all you are interested in is what everyone else thinks, then the Cee'd is not for you - enjoy your "premium" car.

Fact is, the results speak for themselves - Cee'd owners are very happy indeed, and to my mind, that is the most important factor.

In so many areas, the only thing "premium" about the Cee'd's competition is the price.... ;->

Ask an owner!

28th Apr 2009, 12:34

Expectations differ, but I'd rather have a better car than I imagined than rue the deficiencies in the expensive car I bought. Mercedes are getting back to old quality with the new E Class 2009 but 1995-2008 cars suck. BMW dynamics are good but the cars are poorly packaged and cost a lot more money for not much benefit on congested British roads. The Ceed looks good, is comfortable and reliable and doesn't break. For less than half of the money of BMW.

28th Apr 2009, 14:43

With prices of prestige brand cars reaching the bottom end of the market now (say, cheapest BMW 3-series within pricing distance of a Mondeo or Sonata), the expectations of the "lower rung" are actually higher than they were a good 15 years ago.

Image is one thing, but no-one who buys a prestige car wants or expects unreliability. Reliability is part and parcel of quality. Would you thing a Rolex is a quality watch if it needed repairs fairly often even when serviced regularly and treated normally? I doubt it. The gold plating and diamonds mean nothing if the watch itself is not dependable. This holds true with cars.

Admittedly, even Audi cannot match the sheer handling of any BMW, if only because of the Bimmer's RWD. But in other aspects such as quality of materials, the solid thunk of the door, the common technology used these days (ASR, ABS, Bluetooth, NCAP crash design parameters), the gap is narrowing far quicker than you think.

A Cortina and a Mercedes 200 from 1981 are planets apart, in price, engineering and build quality. The Mondeo and the C-class are well within the same galaxy. Kia and Hyundai are accelerating in that direction.