Kia Carens 1.7 CRDi 2
Week ending: August 12
Miles driven this week: 56
My colleague Rob Keenan reported a strange smell in our Carens some months back, which he put down to its air-con system. After leaving the Carens in the sun for a day, I opened the door to a similar whiff just this week.
A quick ask around the office revealed nobody had spilt anything inside and after searching the car and finding nothing, I was left scratching my head. No evidence of any spillages or rogue bananas inside, just the odd coffee cup and sandwich wrapper.
The only thing left to do was to get the whole car properly cleaned. So, after a full valet and the addition of a air-freshener, it's now sparkling on the outside and pine-fresh on the inside. Only time will tell if our Carens manages to remain pong-free for long.
Week ending: August 6
Miles driven this week: 350
We’ve determined that the Carens’ sixth and seventh seats are for occasional use only. Two adults will fit, but they wouldn’t want to be back there for hours on end.
As a five-seat MPV, though, there’s little that offers so much space and practicality for the money. That’s exactly why I chose to take the Carens on my Three Peaks Challenge at the weekend.
We were five adults, and we had a huge amount of walking gear with us. The idea is to walk the tallest mountains in Scotland, England and Wales in less than 24 hours, and that requires clothing and equipment for every eventuality.
We weren’t using the Carens to travel between the mountains – that was the job of a pre-organised minibus – but it did have to carry us to the minibus’s start point in Chester, which was a three-hour drive in itself.
My passengers were unconvinced everything was going to fit before getting in. However, the Carens’ individual rear seats and generous head- and shoulder room meant everyone was kept happy. Luggage for five slotted into the boot, too.
Even though the Carens was fully laden, the trip still read 44.8mpg at the end of the weekend.
By Rory White