Joel Helmes road tests and reviews the 2012 Kia Cerato Koup.
If the Kia Cerato Koup was music it would be Christian Rock.
In other words it has a pretty good beat and even your grandmother wouldn’t be offended by it.
It’s this conservatism that gives it an advantage over coupé rivals such as the Hyundai Veloster and Toyota 86/Subaru BRZ…it may not be as much fun but it’s probably easier to live with day to day.
The current Cerato line-up will soon get a major overhaul with the new look model bringing a more rounded and daring shape (you can check out some images here).
While we can’t stand in the way of progress the current Cerato design is anything but unattractive, in fact I think it looks quite stylish.
The entire Cerato range, including the Koup, has just the one engine on offer a 2.0 litre petrol which delivers 115kW and 194Nm.
The Kia Cerato Koup range starts at $23,390 and runs up to the SLS auto which will set you back $29,455.
On the road the Koup delivers a bit of good clean fun.
The engine is smooth and the acceleration is crisp, most importantly the get-up-and-go lives up to the sporty look and feel of the car.
Just as importantly the six-speed sports automatic plays the game well delivering swift and smooth changes in all the right places.
The standard features list boasts a “Stainless Steel Dual System” – don’t expect race car like exhaust notes though, the Koup is much too sensible for that.
Handling is quite good too, and the ride is actually pretty pleasant.
The all import fuel consumption is quite reasonable; the official figure is a combined 7.7L/100. I managed around 9L/100 in the city and just over 6L/100 on the highway.
Inside the cabin is probably where the Cerato is starting to show its age, in saying that everything is well-placed and functional.
The leather seats in the SLS are probably the highlight in the Koup cabin, the rear seat in particular is much more comfortable and roomy than you would expect in a coupe.
Other standard inclusions in the SLS include an electric sunroof, tilt and reach steering adjustment, Bluetooth connectivity, and leather steering wheel/transmission selector.
The Kia Cerato Koup also boasts pretty good legroom front and back and to prove the point that it’s an easy to live with “sports car” option the boot is quite sizeable.
I took the Koup for a long free-way run and enjoyed the cruise control system which allows you to make speed adjustments incrementally at the push of a button, very handy for overtaking or reducing speeds through road works etc.
Disappointingly however the current Cerato can’t be fitted with satellite navigation or a rear-reversing camera and this is a let-down.
On the safety front the Kia Cerato Koup disappointingly fell short of the maximum rating and has just a 4-Star ANCAP classification.
Summing it up; the 2012 Kia Cerato Koup is much more mild than wild, but it offers more comfort and practicality than some its rivals and with pretty healthy acceleration, good road manners and nice styling I think it offers a good safe and easy to live with alternative.
NUTS and BOLTS
Engine: 2.0 litre petrol delivering 115kW and 194Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic or six-speed manual
Safety: Four stars
Warranty: Five years
Origin: South Korea
Price: From $23,390