Kia Picanto - Eco Car

The Kia Picanto is a cute little city car, perfect for zipping in and out of traffic. It might not win any styling awards nor is it as hardy as some European superminis, but it is a cost-effective choice if you’re looking for a new car. Kia Picanto’s are available from £6,495 OTR. Kia’s website is offering the Picanto 1 from £5,695, (Dec 2010). Metallic paint is an extra £395. The Picanto is available in eight colours and is backed by a 5 year /100,000 mile paint warranty.

Kia Picanto - City Car

Kia Picanto - Car Tax Band (VED)

Mostly due to the fact the tiny little Kia Picanto 1.1 litre engine needs to be worked hard, the car tax band is rated C. This is quite poor for such a small, frugal car. Other cars in its class, such as the VW Lupo, are rated class B, meaning the Kia isn’t the cheapest in its class to tax each year. However Car Tax Band C is free for the first year and only £30 a year from the second year.

Kia Picanto - C02 Emissions

The industry standard for superminis is an emissions value of 100g/km or less. The Kia Picanto comes in at 114g/km. While that doesn’t make it overly bad, it puts it in the shadows of more eco-friendly cars such as the Fiat 500, for instance.

Kia Picanto - Miles Per Gallon (MPG)

One of the defining features of the Kia is its frugality. Visiting a petrol station is not a rare occurrence, with its 58.8mpg (for the 1100cc engine). However, the Kia falls into insurance group 8A, making it much more expensive to insure than a Nissan Micra, for example.

Kia Picanto - Safety Features

The Kia is not a speed demon and the designers have not packed it out with as many safety features as one would like. There are airbags for both the driver and the passenger, and anti-lock braking system, but that is about it.

Kia Picanto – Interior Space

The Picanto is designed as a car for the city, not one for long drives. The seats are comfortable for short drives but should you venture onto the motorway for an extended time, it can be tiresome. There is surprisingly enough room in the rear for two adults as the little Kia is deceivingly spacious inside.

Kia Picanto - Eco Car

Kia Picanto- 7 Year Warranty

Kia has come a long way in the reliability stakes over the past few years and its long warranty backs that up. Kia wouldn’t give a seven-year warranty if its cars weren’t made from quality materials. The plastics are not as sumptuous as those of a VW nor is the dashboard laid out perfectly as a Japanese car, but for the list price (of just over £6,495), the Kia isn’t bad.

Kia Picanto - Speed

Being one of the slowest new cars on the road today, the Kia Picanto struggles to even get to 60mph (in 16.4 seconds) and cannot manage triple figures for its top speed. Pootling around at 30-40mph is where the Kia is in its element, and for most that’s good enough.

Kia Picanto - Boot Space

While there is a great amount of leg and head-room in the front and rear, the boot space is lacking. There is the chance to fold down the rear seats, which brings the total capacity to over 300 litres - more than adequate for a car of this size.

Kia Picanto - Conclusion

The Kia Picanto small wheelbase and the front-wheel drive chassis make it an easy car to manoeuvre. Three-point turns can be a thing of the past as it turns on a sixpence. Head into a corner too fast and it is plagued with scrubby under steer, but the little Kia struggles to gain much pace so its handling is rarely something to worry about.

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