Kia Pro_cee’d GT versus Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo
Kia Pro_cee’d GT versus Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo. Besides a few differences both are very similar, so which one’s the better buy?
Are they any good to drive?
KIA PRO_CEE’D GT: For the pro_cee’d GT, Kia has made use of its 1.6-litre four-cylinder ‘Gamma’ engine and added a twin-scroll turbocharger to it. It’s, more or less, the same engine that runs in the Hyundai Veloster Turbo.
The 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine produces 150kW of power (at 6000rpm) and 265Nm of torque (from 1750-4500rpm) – more than 80% of torque is available from just off idle at 1500rpm. That’s a performance lift, over the base engine, of around 50% and 60%, respectively.
For number crunchers, the pro_cee’d GT will hit the legal limit (100km/h) in 7.4 seconds, and accelerate from 80-110km/h in fifth gear in around seven seconds. It averages 7.4L/100km and emits 171g/km of CO2. This is matched to a six-speed manual gearbox.
Up and running, the pro_cee’d GT’s turbocharged engine offers plenty of oomph from low revs but it won’t ever pin back your ears – it feels muscular rather than urgent. Kia Australia has re-mapped the steering which offers direct albeit light-feeling steering, and tuned (to suit Australians) the already tuned suspension (the Kia runs a different rear suspension set-up than the Veloster: multi-link vs beam axle), which makes for a package that changes direction with purpose and never feels crashy across broken surfaces.
HYUNDAI VELOSTER SR TURBO: Same as the Kia Pro_cee’d GT, power comes from a turbocharged version of the garden-variety Veloster 1.6-litre four-cylinder which in this boosted form produces 150kW at 6000rpm and 265Nm of torque from 1750rpm–4500rpm. That’s a staggering 46% and 60% more power and torque over the naturally-aspirated engine.
The standard fit six-speed manual transmission (a six-speed auto with paddle shifts is an extra cost option) lacks precision; I found myself inadvertently grabbing third instead of fifth gear. Official fuel consumption is an impressive 6.8L/100km (or 7.6/100km for the auto).
Despite possessing almost twice the power as its brother, the Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo doesn’t feel, initially at least, all that different to the non-turbo Veloster. But, keep the revs north of 3500rpm and it comes to life with impressive grip and go. The bespoke Veloster SR Turbo suspension has been tuned for our roads and offers a firm ride but there’s just enough give over sharp-edged ruts that it won’t upset the ride. And the Motor Driven Power Steering, while totally feel free, offers decent weight and accuracy when cornering.
Room to move?
KIA PRO_CEE’D GT: Clamber into the pro_cee’d GT Tech that we drove (although it’s the same in the base GT) and you’ll find your backside cupped by Recaro sports seats and that would have been unthinkable a few years ago… elsewhere inside you’ll see the typical hot hatch adornments: stainless steel pedals, chrome highlights, and contrasted red stitching on the seats and leather-wrapped steering wheel.
There’s room in the back for three and big wide door openings make it pretty easy to get across the folded down front seats and into the back, but headroom is limited due to the rake of the roof, although there’s decent legroom.
HYUNDAI VELOSTER SR TURBO: Unlike the Kia Proc_cee’d GT which offers an interior that matches the look of the exterior, the Veloster SR Turbo, inside, isn’t as visually aggressive as the exterior. Indeed, there’s only the Turbo stitching on the little-too-large seats suggesting this is something more than a garden-variety Veloster; they lack the grip of the Recaro seats in the Kia.
The plastics are high quality, the dash layout is easy to use, and the fit and finish is on-par with anything from the Volkswagen Group, always a benchmark in quality. It feels a little more cramped in the back of the Veloster because of the drastic rake on the roofline, indeed taller passengers will find it very cramped in the back.
How much and what do you get?
KIA PRO_CEE’D GT: The Kia pro_cee’d GT is available in two trim levels: GT and GT Tech. Both get aggressive-looking front and rear bumpers, side sill mouldings dual exhausts, LED daytime running lights and 18-inch alloy wheels. Both are well equipped for the money, and the GT Tech adds a panoramic sunroof, smart key with push button start and door handle lighting. The GT lists from $29,990 (+ORC) while the GT Tech is priced from $33,490 (+ORC) – metallic paint is a $595 extra cost option.
HYUNDAI VELOSTER SR TURBO: Priced from $31,990 (+ORC) the Veloster SR Turbo gets a long list of standard features other makers normally expect you to pay a lot more for. The list includes a panoramic glass sunroof, seven-inch touch screen with sat-nav (and a three-year NAVTEQ MapCare plan), reversing camera, Bluetooth and iPod connectivity with audio streaming, 18-inch alloys, and electric driver’s seat slide and tilt.
Are they safe?
KIA PRO_CEE’D GT: The Kia pro_cee’d GT has received a five-star EuroNCAP crash safety rating. As standard the pro_cee’d GT gets Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Vehicle Stability Management (VSM), Hill-start Assist Control (HAC), anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BAS), six airbags, seat-belt reminder, impact-sensing door unlocking and three child seat anchors plus two ISOFIX child-seat mounts. The pro_cee’d GT comes standard with six airbags.
HYUNDAI VELOSTER SR TURBO: The Veloster SR Turbo has a five-star ANCAP crash safety rating, six airbags, and Hyundai’s Vehicle Stability Management, which combines the Motor Driven Power Steering with stability and traction controls. It also features ABS with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist. A reversing camera and alarm are standard.
Practical Motoring Says
1. KIA PRO_CEE’D GT
FOR: Stylish inside and out; impressive standard features list; fun to drive.
AGAINST: Doesn’t sound ‘hot’ enough; only available with a manual which might turn off some buyers.
VERDICT: The Kia pro_cee’d GT offers enough performance to be fun to drive, plenty of gear for the money and enough room inside for four people. Kia’s first real toe in the water of performance hatches is a good one.
2. HYUNDAI VELOSTER SR TURBO
FOR: Impressive standard features list; quirky, good looks.
AGAINST: Tight backseat; doesn’t feel special enough inside; seats aren’t grippy enough; more expensive than the Kia; three-door layout might turn-off some buyers.
VERDICT: There’s no doubt the Veloster SR Turbo represents an impressive step for Hyundai. It’s loaded with kit and while it might not rival some established hot hatches it’s still a lot of fun to drive.