[UPDATE] Speak of the devil, the new Kia Ceed GT has been photographed. See it in a dozen of spy shots.
Another day, another piece of news about the third-generation Kia Ceed unveiled last month in Geneva. After learning about the Shooting Brake’s premiere set for the Paris Motor Show this October, the company’s Head of Product Planning in Europe, David Labrosse, has told AutoRAI the sporty GT is scheduled for a market launch in 2019. That’s the good news. The bad news is we shouldn’t be expecting more power as the new version will have roughly 200 hp, so just about the same as its predecessor. While the old one also came in a three-door coupe guise, the new model will be available strictly as a five-door hatchback.
The silver lining is that while the turbocharged 1.6-liter gasoline will push out just about the same power, Kia’s engineers are tweaking it to improve efficiency and lower fuel consumption and emissions. No word about the amount of torque it will generate, but it should be in the same ballpark as the model before it, which had 195 pound-feet (265 Newton-meters).
Even without a bump in output, the Ceed GT will still pack significantly more punch compared to the most powerful regular 2018 Ceed available today, rated at 138 hp and 178 lb-ft (241 Nm) from its new 1.4-liter gasoline unit.
As for a beefier version that would slot above the GT, it’s not going to happen. David Labrosse motivated the company’s decision by saying there would not be enough customer demand to justify the model’s existence. Should you want a hotter South Korean compact hatchback, look no further than the Hyundai i30 N a.k.a. the “corner rascal” a.k.a. “everyday sports car” available with as much as 272 hp and 260 lb-ft (352 Nm) in the Performance version.
Getting back to the Ceed GT, now without the weird apostrophe, we might get to see it as early as March 2019 at the Geneva Motor Show before going on sale shortly thereafter.