The vital statistics suggest that the Kia Venga is not that quick off the mark but in reality the performance is not too shabby
All Kia Vengas have brake-discs, front and rear, plus ABS and EBD, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Traction Control (TC), Brake Assist, (BAS), Hill Assist Control (HAC) and six airbags. And for extra piece of mind, like the Kia cee'd and others from the Kia stable, the Kia Venga comes with a 7-year/100,000mile warranty covering the entire car.
Moving up to the Kia Venga 2 adds 16-inch alloys, powered and heated, body-coloured door mirrors, an iPod cable and secondary audio controls on the steering wheel. The standard audio system comprises an RDS radio and CD player with MP3 playback plus the USB and AUX ports. However, for some reason our Samsung MP3 unit wasn't recognised. Correction: it was, but the music wasn't readable.
The Kia Venga 3 offers customers powered windows in the rear of the cabin, front fog lamps, climate control, privacy glass in the rear windows and tailgate and a two-section, panoramic glass sunroof. Prices for the Kia Venga range vary between £11,495 and £15,395.
There are two principal engines - both with a capacity of 1.4-litres. The petrol version produces 90PS at 6,200rpm and 137Nm of torque at 4,000rpm, while the CRDi diesel unit produces the same amount of power but at 4,000rpm, along with 220Nm between 1,750- and 2,750rpm.
Both of these engines are mated to manual gearboxes; 5-speed for the petrol and 6-speed for the oil-burner and both engines are available in every trim level. The odd one out is the 1.6 petrol unit, which outputs 125PS at 6,300rpm and 156Nm at 4,000rpm. It is set slightly apart as it is only available mated to a 4-speed automatic 'box and in Kia Venga 2 trim.
I should point out that despite having a waste-gate turbocharger, the diesel-engine is part of Kia's Eco Dynamics programme - a range of technologies designed to reduce CO2 and improve fuel consumption. In this regard it comes with an Intelligent Stop and Go (ISG) system and has a combined fuel economy of 62.8mpg and emissions of 117g/km.
Although good, the petrol version cannot hope to compete with these figures, returning 37.7mpg on the urban cycle, 51.4mpg on the extra-urban and 45.6mpg for the combined cycle with emissions of 147g/km. Both 1.4 units have the same top speed of 104mph (110mph for the 1.6) but the petrol engine gets the Kia Venga from standstill to 62mph in 12.4 seconds, rather than 14.0 seconds for the diesel.
The vital statistics suggest that the Kia Venga is not that quick off the mark but in reality the performance is not too shabby, once you've found the right gear, which might not be the one you expect with the 5-speed box. There is a prompt in the instrument panel that urges you to get into a higher gear as soon as possible but once 5th gear has been reached, there is not a great deal left for overtaking. However, dropping just one gear makes all the difference to the amount of oomph available.
"Pretty good" is a phrase that also describes the ride and handling. Again, it is not going to set the world on fire but it is surprisingly smooth on major roads and quite agile around the lanes and minor roads. It is simply a nice car that is unlikely to offend or cause anyone any problems and that is perfect for volume sales.18 May 2010
Kia Venga Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Kia Venga 2 1.4|
|Colour||Continental Silver - Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||12.4 seconds|
|Top Speed||104 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||51.4 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||7 years / 100000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 18/05/10)||£12,695|