Skip to content
Motorpoint logo
  • All Cars
  • By Make
  • By Model
  • By Body Style
  • By Budget
  • Electric Cars
  • Hybrid cars
  • Vans
  • Reviews
  • Aftercare
  • Stock Number Search

Kia XCeed engines, driving and performance

How does the Kia XCeed drive?

No one's going to get offended by the way the XCeed drives – the controls are accurate and fairly light, and the handling is safe and predictable. That means, whether you're pottering around town or slogging up the motorway, it never gets in your way or reacts weirdly to your inputs. The manual gear shifter and clutch deserve a special nod – the former is light and mechanical, while the latter is intuitive and nicely weighted.

What's lacking, however, is any real sense of fun, with the Kia never seeming to relish the idea of cornering with any kind of enthusiasm. Cars like the Ford Focus and Mazda 3 are more entertaining behind the wheel, while rivals like the Peugeot 308 and Volkswagen Golf do a better job of being comfortable and effortless to drive.

Is the Kia XCeed comfortable?

We'd hoped that, with the XCeed's raised ride height compared to a standard Ceed, it might ride a little softer than its sibling. This isn't the case, however – the XCeed has moderately firm suspension that's very similar in practice to the regular hatch.

It isn't jarring or uncomfortable, but bumps are still felt clearly in the cabin and rough road surfaces will send some vibrations up through the seat bases. A Skoda Karoq or Octavia will be noticeably more comfortable over most road types.

Noise on the move is reasonably well suppressed, with thumps from the suspension and a little tyre roar being the most noticeable intrusions at speed.

What’s the best Kia XCeed engine?

Most XCeed models available on the used market come with a 1.5-litre turbo petrol engine and this is the version we'd recommend. With 158hp, it's well matched to a car this size and has more than enough power to whisk you up to motorway speeds without breaking a sweat. The engine's motorway manners are excellent, too, with barely any perceivable grumble as you come on and off the accelerator.

The company's DCT automatic gearbox is available with this engine, but we much prefer the six-speed manual, which feels particularly nicely engineered, with a snappy, mechanical throw and easy clutch action.

Kia XCeed performance

Kia's sensible billing means there isn't a high-performance version of the XCeed – sister brand Hyundai tends to get the lion's share of the group's sporty parts and engines.

As a result, the fastest XCeed is the 158hp 1.5-litre turbo petrol model. It dashes from 0-62mph in a respectable 8.7 seconds – nothing that would worry even the most lukewarm of hot hatches – but enough that it can get up to motorway speeds without straining.

You may also be interested in

Review for Mercedes-Benz A Class

Mercedes-BenzA Class

8 / 10

The A-Class packs quality into a compact, city-friendly body

Review for Seat Leon


8 / 10

The SEAT Leon is sportier and cheaper than the VW Golf it's based on

Review for Ford Focus


8 / 10

The Ford Focus is an excellent, do-it-all family transporter