The dual-CVVT 1.6 litre Gamma II MPI unit develops 130 PS and 157 Nm of torque, and can return a quoted 6.8 litres per 100 km on a combined cycle.
New to the Cerato, the 2.0 litre Nu MPI produces 161 PS and 194 Nm of twist, with fuel consumption quoted at 7.0 litres per 100 km. Both engines are coupled to a six-speed auto gearbox.
Penned by Kia’s American Design Centre in California, the Kia Cerato sports a prominent, honeycombed and chrome-surrounded ‘Tiger Nose‘ grille, swept-back headlamps with LED DRL eyebrows, a striking kick-up lower body crease and wrap-around LED rear lamps.
Being longer, lower and wider than the car it replaces, with a wheelbase stretched by 50 mm to 2,700 mm, the C-segment sedan promises more cabin room throughout, as well as a six-litre jump in boot volume to 421 litres.
A new dashboard layout holds a centre stack angled towards the driver and a new three-spoke steering wheel with audio, cruise control and Bluetooth hands-free controls. The driver’s seat is 10-way electrically adjustable, with two memory settings.
The motor-driven power steering (essentially EPS) gets FlexSteer, which offers Comfort, Normal and Sport settings. Suspension is handled by MacPherson struts up front and a coupled torsion beam out back, and those 17-inch five-spoke alloys are wrapped in 215/45 series tyres.
The list of standard-across-the-range features is long, including door mirror-mounted welcome lamps, fog lamps, reverse camera, keyless entry and start, park assist, dual-zone climate control with rear air vents and cluster ioniser, auto demister and 60:40 split folding back seats.
On the safety front, there are six airbags (dual front, side and curtain), VSM, ESC, TCS, Brake Assist, ISOFIX, speed-sensing auto door lock and impact-sensing auto door unlock. The Kia Cerato has a five-star NHTSA and Australian NCAP safety rating.
What the 2.0 gains over the 1.6 are self-levelling HID projector headlamps (halogen for 1.6), a rear spoiler, sunroof, supervision cluster (dot matrix LCD for 1.6) and leather seats with air ventilation for the driver (fabric, no ventilation for 1.6).
Locally assembled in Gurun, Kedah, the Kia Cerato can be had in Clear White, Glittering Metal, Bright Silver, Temptation Red and Golden Beat exterior colours. Kia Malaysia targets sales of 600 units monthly.
Also at the launch event in Pavilion KL, the winner of the Project C contest, Adam Ng, was presented with the keys to a Cerato 1.6. A total of 3,227 entries were received and the top 50 shortlisted finalists had to submit a tagline for the Cerato to win the grand prize.
On-the-road prices including insurance are RM99,888 for the 1.6 and RM118,888 for the 2.0. Included is a five-year warranty with unlimited mileage. Read our test drive report on both 1.6 and 2.0 variants here.
Besides live pics from the launch event below, we have another big set of images from the showroom here.