Our cars: Kia Carens - March

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  • Kia-supplied Thule bike rack is brilliant, and having the bikes in place reduces the wind whistle

    Kia-supplied Thule bike rack is brilliant, and having the bikes in place reduces the wind whistle

  • The Carens will go for ages between windscreen washer refills

    The Carens will go for ages between windscreen washer refills

  • Climate controls are simple to use and air-con is quick to cool the cabin

    Climate controls are simple to use and air-con is quick to cool the cabin

  • Carens was pressed into load-lugging duties again this week

    Carens was pressed into load-lugging duties again this week

  • Carens is great at transporting people, but it's got a seriously practical load space, too

    Carens is great at transporting people, but it's got a seriously practical load space, too

  • Carens' bike rack is easier to remove than we expected - once unscrewed, it lifts away in one piece

    Carens' bike rack is easier to remove than we expected - once unscrewed, it lifts away in one piece

  • New bike rack adds practicality, but produces a loud whistling noise at speed

    New bike rack adds practicality, but produces a loud whistling noise at speed

  • Carens was great for a tip run

    Carens was great for a tip run

  • Caren's steering wheel controls feel well built and satisfying to use. They're easy to tell apart by touch, too

    Caren's steering wheel controls feel well built and satisfying to use. They're easy to tell apart by touch, too

  • The dedicated storage area for the Carens' boot cover is another feature that makes this MPV genuinely versatile

    The dedicated storage area for the Carens' boot cover is another feature that makes this MPV genuinely versatile

  • Kia's steering has been frustrating Alex, regardless of which setting she puts it in

    Kia's steering has been frustrating Alex, regardless of which setting she puts it in

  • Rearmost seats are a squeeze for six-foot adults - but just about tolerable for short journeys

    Rearmost seats are a squeeze for six-foot adults - but just about tolerable for short journeys

  • Carens safely carried a treasured childhood dolls' house this week

    Carens safely carried a treasured childhood dolls' house this week

  • Mothercare's child seat fitting experts confirmed that our model of child seat didn't fit the Carens

    Mothercare's child seat fitting experts confirmed that our model of child seat didn't fit the Carens

  • Climb up to the back seats not too daunting, but it's sometimes tricky to get out again.

    Climb up to the back seats not too daunting, but it's sometimes tricky to get out again.

  • Angle of Carens' rear seat buckles caused dangerous 'buckle crunch' for our model of child seat

    Angle of Carens' rear seat buckles caused dangerous 'buckle crunch' for our model of child seat

  • Carens has been good as a camera car

    Carens has been good as a camera car

  • Rivals arriving thick and fast

    Rivals arriving thick and fast

  • The Kia's boot light detaches and becomes a torch - a neat touch.

    The Kia's boot light detaches and becomes a torch - a neat touch.

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Kia Carens 1.7 CRDi 2

Read the full Kia Carens review

Week ending March 28
Mileage 8050
Driven this week 329 miles

Spring is in the air, and so I decided it was time to give my abode a somewhat ruthless spring clean. The resultant pile of stuff that was heading for the tip was bigger than my usual Fiesta ST could cope with, so I grabbed the keys to the long-term Carens and filled it with all manner of junk.

It easily coped with the detritus of my life, and managed a couple of trips to the tip then a long jaunt to Gatwick airport on the one tank of fuel.

The only downside to the experience was caused by the bike rack attached to the roof by colleague Rory White, because as soon as my speed got above 30mph it began to whistle loudly. Not much of a problem on the run top the recycling centre, but more of an issue during the 4am run to an airport car park.

Euan Doig

 

Kia Carens 1.7 CRDi 2

Read the full Kia Carens review

Week ending March 14
Mileage 7721
Driven this week 151 miles

Colleague Alex Newby loved our Carens’ fantastic space and practicality, which made transporting her young family that little bit easier.

However, Alex has moved on to another new car now, our new Honda Civic Tourer, so to ensure the Kia’s superb practicality continues to be exploited, I’ve had an exciting accessory fitted.

It’s exciting for me at least, because this year I plan to cycle from London to Paris, via Portsmouth and Caens, in less than 24 hours. I’m quite sure it’s going to be painful, but transporting my two training partners, our mountains of cycling kit and our three bikes shouldn’t be, because our Kia has a shiny new roof-mounted bike rack.

The Carens comes with roof rails already in place, so adding the cross bars costs £155, and the three individual bike racks cost £119.50 each. It seems steep, but it is very good quality Thule equipment.

I have plenty of training rides in the diary, so I’ll let you know how we get on.

Rory White

 

Our cars: Kia Carens - February

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