Carens a midi-MPV


Kia Carens, interior

CHECK out the Kia Carens against virtually all the other midi-MPVs on the market, especially when you remember that Kias now have a 100,000 mile warranty, and you can see it's quite a bargain.

It's a great family holdall for the price of a hatchback and that warranty is transferable to new owners. It really gives an idea how confident the company is in its products.

Models up to 2006 had a 1.8 petrol engine with 110 or 124bhp, and a 2.0-litre diesel 111bhp and better economy.

The willing, smooth and quiet 1.8-litre petrol and five speed gearbox give good acceleration which is better than most others of a similar size. But the diesel is not so brisk, and a fair bit noisier.

All are very easy to drive, with good handling, decent road holding and fair grip with some roll. They are comfortable to ride in and to drive.

A new model was introduced in 2006, with huge improvements all round.

Five seaters have 2+3 configuration with a very good boot, but optional six seaters have three rows of two. The third row is only suitable for children and when in use, leaves no boot at all.

They can be easily folded to make more space, and the middle row have sliding adjustment.

: 8/10

: Citroen Picasso




Price: Pay about £2,700 for an '02 52-reg LE, or £4,100 for an ‘05 05-reg LX.

Mechanical: 111bhp, 1,991cc,  4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 5-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 107mph

0-62mph: 13.1 seconds

Combined MPG: 43

Insurance Group: 8

C02 emissions: 171g/km


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