Kia Venga

Debut: 2009
Maker: KIA
Predecessor: no


Having seen Cee'd and Soul, it's not surprise to see Kia produced another competitive product...

Alright, I am not going to spend too many words on this car because there is neither a lot to praise or to criticize. Having seen the vast improvement of Cee'd and Soul, it's not surprising to see Kia produced another competitive product. However, the Venga is not a class leader. It has mainly two assets - a spacious cabin and a stylish look. By the standard of B-segment supermini, it offers remarkable space for four thanks to its 2615mm wheelbase, 1600mm height and an efficient packaging. Its rear seat slides in longitudinal direction to alter space between cabin and luggage space, so you can either fit very tall guys at the back or at most 440 liters of luggages, and then there is another space beneath the boot floor to store tools and trivial things. The rear seat also splits and folds flat to accommodate more luggages. Having said that, these utilities and space advantage are no more than standard features of the B-segment MPVs that the Venga actually compete with.


It is a standard follower rather than a standard setter...

Then come the design, the most stylish among all KIA cars I would say. It is said to be the first KIA designed from scratch by its German design boss Peter Schreyer. I love its nose and its compact, wheels-to-the-corners stance. However, once you get used to it, it becomes quite ordinary. It lacks the visual impact of Citroen C3 Picasso. The interior is similar. Its instrument pod and center console looks neat and classy in first sight, but spend more time in it and you will forget about it. Dark and hard plastics dominate the cabin, failing to deliver a cheerful ambience normally associated with Midi-MPVs.

In the mechanical side, there is little to speak. Among the 4 engines it offers - 90hp 1.4 CVVT and 124hp 1.6 CVVT petrol, 90hp 1.4 turbo diesel and 128hp 1.6 turbo diesel - the cheapest 1.4 petrol is the most sensible choice. This engine is relatively eager and quiet. Its continuous variable valve timing gives it remarkable torque for its class, i.e. 101 lb-ft, and 80 percent of which is available from 1500 rpm. Therefore you can forget the more expensive engines, whose manners are less sweet. The 5-speed manual gearbox is also satisfying to shift.
  

The interior looks neat and classy in first sight, but spend more time and you will forget about it.

The Venga is derived from the same platform as Soul, with wheelbase stretched to meet its requirements for extra space. It is also a tall car, but its suspension is tuned to satisfy European customers, which means a rather firm setup. As a result, body roll is very well suppressed, while the ride is less comfortable than most rivals, especially C3 Picasso. Its handling is nimble, planted and grippy, but it is not especially entertaining to drive, blame to the numb steering and brake.

Overall, Venga is competent rather than outstanding. It is a standard follower rather than a standard setter. While it does most things well, it won't give you a proud feeling like C3 Picasso or Honda Fit (Jazz).
 
 The above report was last updated on 21 Feb 2010. All Rights Reserved.
 
AutoZine Rating


Venga



Specifications








Table 1
11
12
13
General remarks
Layout
Chassis
Body
Length / width / height
Wheelbase
Engine
Capacity
Valve gears
Induction
Other engine features
Max power
Max torque
Transmission
Suspension layout

Suspension features
Tires
Kerb weight
Top speed
0-60 mph (sec)
0-100 mph (sec)
Venga 1.4
Front-engined, FWD
Steel monocoque
Mainly steel
4068 / 1765 / 1600 mm
2615 mm
Inline-4
1397 cc
DOHC 16 valves, VVT
-
-
90 hp
101 lbft
5-speed manual
F: strut
R: torsion-beam
-
195/65R15
1178 kg
104 mph (c)
12 (est)
-
Venga 1.6CRDi
Front-engined, FWD
Steel monocoque
Mainly steel
4068 / 1765 / 1600 mm
2615 mm
Inline-4, diesel
1582 cc
DOHC 16 valves
VTG turbo
CDI
128 hp
192 lbft
6-speed manual
F: strut
R: torsion-beam
-
205/55R16
1281 kg
115 mph (c)
10.4 (est)
-


Performance tested by: -

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