Owner Review

2014 Kia Cerato Sli Nav Review

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2 years in and I'm not regretting my purchase although there are annoyances that have popped up but often they're balanced out by things that just work.

A while back now I wrote a review just after I bought the car. You can search the archives for that. Having reread it myself I can say that much of it still holds true.

The car (at the price I purchased it) was fantastic value for money. It drives well and it has a solid treasure trove of features that give Kia its value proposition name.

Previously I had criticised the media unit for some frustrating faults such as locking up when starting the car and also duplicating certain media file types but then not recognising the duplicate however these have all been fixed in an update during 2015.

An additional annoyance which is also quite unsafe is the media unit's phone feature which requires you to either enter a full phone number or the contact's name on the keypad. This means taking your eyes of the road to go through a menu and then enter the details. Hotkeys or a voice recognition option would be greatly appreciated.

There are rattles that still present themselves (in my case in the steering wheel) but this is hardly an isolated case to Kia nor a representation of all Kia vehicles. It's annoying all the same.

In terms of the drive, I find the off the mark peppiness a little wanting unless you properly put your foot down. And it can feel a tad slow to drop down a gear when going up a hill for example. I'm not suggesting at all that the car doesn't have enough grunt because it's not a hot hatch and it can get up and go, but there are holes in its power delivery and a very slight mismatch in gearing.

It's still very comfortable, good (but not great) with fuel and the ongoing costs are reasonable. I still love (LOVE) the ventilated driver's seat and use it far more than the heated function. Speaking of ventilation the climate control works great and the upper spec Ceratos have vents in the back which would be great for kids if I were to be burdened with them - not anytime soon.

The biggest ongoing flaw with the Cerato (this may be fixed in the upcoming facelift but word on the street is not likely) is that it's not keeping up with the Jones on the safety front. There's not forward collision breaking, no blind spot assist, no auto park, no auto wipers... When compared to the competition it's falling behind in this field fast.

The interior is holding up well, it's not Mazda or VW levels of tactile quality but I'd say just above average though I do question the longevity of the "leather" steering wheel. Somehow I have scratched it with keys and it leaves great canyons in the the material. The flex steering is as much a gimmick as it was 2 years ago.

Since I purchased my Cerato, Kia has extended the warranty 2 years to 7 and made the SAT Nav media unit standard on all models except the base. That is good news for everyone else...

All up, the car has been and continues to be great. Not perfect by any means but better than I expected. This won't be my last Kia.