Likely to lob in Geneva

The new-generation Kia Cerato/Cee'd hatchback has been spied during testing in Europe, ahead of a likely unveiling at the Geneva motor show in March.

Despite the black and white camouflage, this vehicle is largely identical in design to the undisguised version seen in Korea last December, pretty much confirming the new Cee'd and Cerato hatchbacks will basically be one and the same.

The sharp headlights feature the same quad-LED daytime-running light signature as the recently-revealed Cerato sedan, while the grille, bumper and front indicators all look very similar to the sedan.

At the rear, there are angular LED tail-lights that are similar in design to those used on the larger Optima Sportswagon, a fastback tailgate, a single exposed exhaust tip, and reflectors embedded into the bumper.

Have a quick look at the Korean hatch spied in December and the Forte (Cerato) sedan revealed in Detroit earlier this month:

Key differences in the front include slight variations in the side intakes in the front bumper – including the size of the indicators –while the 'tiger nose' grille features a chrome frame around the entire thing, where the sedan gets it on the top and bottom.

Both also feature similar creases in the bonnet, while the mirrors look largely identical too.

A quick look at the above image shows, however, that the Euro-market version gets a funky LED signature for the indicators inside the headlight cluster, which differs from the US-market Forte sedan.

We're expecting the new Cee'd to be revealed at the Geneva motor show in March. Stay tuned for an update.

Australia

Kia's local division has already confirmed the Cerato hatchback will arrive Down Under later in the year – following the sedan's mid-year launch.

While the company is yet to confirm just how closely-related our Cerato hatch will be to Europe's Cee'd, Kia Australia's CEO, Damien Meredith, told media in November "they'll be more closely aligned this time".

The local arm has also hinted the new model will feature a more upmarket cabin and the latest safety systems across most of the range – similar to what Hyundai has done with the related i30.