Kia Launches Plug-in Hybrid Sportswagon Ceed and Xceed

Kia's first electrified larger get 139bhp petrol-electric powertrain, promising an EV range of around 37 miles

Kia has introduced two frugal new petrol-electric additions to its range: the Xceed and the Ceed Sportswagon Plug-in Hybrid.

The new models represent the first time Kia has electrified it as the backbone of a family hatchback. They come at a time of increased popularity in Ceed's range, with Kia claiming a 40% year-on-year increase in sales in the first half of 2019. One in seven CIAS sold in Europe is now electrified in some way.

The Xceed and the Ceed Sportswagon are both powered by a 1,6-liter four-cylinder petrol engine paired with a 44.5kW electric motor and an 8,9kWh lithium polymer battery. Overall outputs 139bhp and 195lb ft of torque, resulting in a 0-62mph time of 10.8sec for the Sportswagon Ceed and 11sec for the Xceed.

Both are mated to a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission instead of the traditional CVT transmission in most hybrids. Kia claims this is to reduce powertrain losses from energy conversion and offer a more enjoyable driving experience.

Combining with regenerative braking that harvests kinetic energy that would otherwise be lost, Kia claims it's all-electric 37 kilometers. A full part homologation, including fuel economy and emissions, will be released closer to the car's market launch in early 2020.

Both models receive minor design tweaks to set them apart from other versions, including a closed version of Kia's "tiger nose" grille to aid aerodynamic efficiency. Unique design wheels are fitted, while the Sportswagen gets more aero-friendly bumpers from GT-line specs. The charging port is integrated into the left front fender.

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Specific instruments, new infotainment features and a charge indicator on top of the dashboard are the main changes inside, but loading specs are also down on both models. In the Sportswagon it's from 600 to 437 litres, when the rear seats are in litres, the figgure in the Xceed drops from 426 to 291. Both models have dedicated space under the trunk floor for charging.

Options include a towing package: not often a feature of a hybrid car, although Kia doesn't cite tugs by either model's horsepower. Although not officially confirmed, the Ceed's standard five-door power version is also expected to arrive in 2020.

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