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2013 Kia Cerato Si owner review

Jude T
Author
Published
PROS
  • Space on offer compared to rivals
  • Long service intervals
  • Features
CONS
  • Paint quality
  • Electrical niggles
  • Fuel economy

About the Kia Cerato

Jude T purchased this Kia Cerato used for $12,999 (including all on-road costs) in 2019. Jude T wouldn’t buy this car again because: “Would like something more economical and bit more powerful like the Mazda 3 SP25 models. Kia has come a long way but still not as premium as other rivals such as the VW Golf or even the Mazda 3. The long warranty Kia offers is very attractive.”

How reliable has your car been? Tell us about any issues.

Mechanically the car has been very reliable in the time I’ve had it, it now has 88,000km. However the same cannot be said about the paint quality on the plastic surfaces.

My factory rear spoiler had faded. Luckily Kia came to the party and resprayed it out of warranty at this point by a year and a bit. It seems to be a common problem with Kia/Hyundai. On very hot day my two rear windows will sometimes refuse to open which can be very annoying on hot days to get the heat out of the cabin.

What do you think of the ownership experience with your car?

I have done all my services with the Kia dealer just like the previous owner did, as the car still had some capped services left. I did find the dealership would try and upsell additional services which were not part of the maintenance schedule and costly.

As my capped services have run out I plan to go to my local mechanic. Living in a regional area a big selling point for me was the longer 15,000km service intervals but in recent time I have only had to service based on time with living during a pandemic.

Are you happy with the price and features of your car?

Overall very happy. It’s got a camera, front and rear sensors, smart keys – and my favourite feature has to be the auto-folding door mirrors with puddle lights in the door handles and wing mirrors.

I do wish it had an auto-dimming rear mirror and HID headlights, both of which are available in the SLI variant.

What do you think of the performance and economy of your car?

Kia quotes 129kW and 209Nm. However both these figures are very high in the rev range meaning it can feel sluggish at times. The car is heavier than most of its peers. This does impact fuel economy.

According to the trip computer I’m averaging 7.9 litres per 100km, all of which are highway kms mostly doing 110km/h.

What do you think of the technology in your car?

Being a 2013 model it has a very small 4.3-inch touchscreen unit with Bluetooth and a reverse camera. There was a 7.0-inch screen in the SLI which was later offered with CarPlay and Android connections. There are none of the newer driver assistance aids offered just six airbags, traction and stability control.

What do you think of the ride comfort and handling of your car?

The car rides on 16-inch alloys which helps with ride comfort. I find the suspension, which is tuned for Australian roads by Kia, is a bit too soft as times and can bottom out on certain speed bumps.

Handling is acceptable for the style of car it is. A set of quality tyres would help handling and I plan to get some new rubber very soon. Road noise is not the best or the worst but I put some of that down to the current tyres that came with the car when I bought it.

The three-mode flex steer is a bit useless. I just leave it in normal mode.

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Ratings
Overall7.2
Show Breakdown
Technology 5
Reliability 8.1
Ride & Handling 6
Price & Features 9
Performance & Economy 7
Ownership Experience 8
Top Line Specs
7.1L
129kW
169g
5 ★
View all specifications