Wednesday, 3 July 2013

2014 Kia Rio GT & Picanto GT

Images by Theo Chin

Words by Rob McSorley


Further to Kia hinting at future sporty GT models if the newly launched cee'd and pro_cee'd GTs are a success it got our mind wondering how further models could turn out. The most natural models that would suit the GT treatment in our eyes would be the Picanto city car and Rio supermini both of which are very decent so should be a good starting point.

To crank up the driving experience both models would benefit from lowered, hardened suspension with stiffer springs and firmer dampers. To further boost agility thicker front anti roll bars would tighten loose chassis movements when cornering. Beefier steering weighting and a quicker rack would give drivers a more connected feeling with the road. Bigger brakes would also feature to reign in the extra performance on offer.

With an arsenal of engines at their disposal the natural choice for the Rio would be the 1.6 Gamma T-GDI (C4FJ) petrol unit which offers 183 bhp and 195 lb ft of torque between 1,500 and 4,500 rpm. Placing it between the Fiesta ST and Peugeot 208 for power. Given the Rio's kerbweight of around 1,250 kg it would sprint to 60 mph in around 7.5 seconds. 

The Picanto could also feature the normally aspirated 1.6 Gamma II MPi (C4FC) which would just fit under the smaller cars bonnet. Power output is 128 bhp and 116 lb ft of torque at 4,850 rpm. This would place the Picanto GT just behind its Renault sport Twingo rival with a 0-60 mph time of around 8.8 seconds considering it's 1,050 kg kerbweight.

Visually thanks to our resident photoshopper Theo you can see that both models have larger alloy wheels with low profile tyres that are considerably wider than the Rio and Picanto's standard rubber. To help boost the models road presence lower side skirts and more aggressive front bumpers create a more butch look. At the rear a sporty diffuser, prominent tailgate spoiler and twin exhausts would finish off the look nicely.

In line with the already launched GT models the new cars cabins would come with plenty of standard equipment and deeper bucket seats that would offer passengers improved stability when cornering. 

Kia would most likely price both models competitively with their closest rivals in a similar way to the cee'd and pro_cee'd. This would ensure they receive plenty of attention from those considering their rivals. The advantage over the competitive however would be Kia's industry leading 7 year warranty.

All photographs and text are the exclusive property of Rob McSorley (except where stated otherwise). They are made available for your personal viewing enjoyment only. No images are within the Public Domain. The photographs may not be copied, reproduced, redistributed, manipulated, projected, used or altered in any way without the prior permission of Rob McSorley (info@DriverVIBE.co.uk).

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