Our cars: Kia Picanto - October

Article 8 of 11 See all
  • Kia Picanto long-term test
  • Year-long review
  • Tested by Will Nightingale
Kia Picanto 1.0 2

Week ending October 21
Milege: 3450
Driven this week: 190

How many suitcases does it take to fill a Picanto boot? One – and not a particularly big one at that, as I found out when I took the car on an airport run this week.

Snug is the word, and misjudging the entry angle of your luggage entry can result in a tussle to extricate it.

The high boot lip also turns hauling the case in and out into a bit of a workout. Thank goodness for the split-fold rear seats. The cabin is more spacious and the controls are well laid out, too, with one exception – Kia’s designers have done a great job of hiding the fuel cap release. After having to resort to the manual, I found it on the driver’s side door sill, overshadowed by the seat.

Week ending October 14
Mileage 3260
Driven this week: 170 miles

With a three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol engine under the bonnet, it’d be unreasonable to expect the Picanto’s performance to be anything other than pedestrian.

The thing is, the Kia’s acceleration is so feeble that a couple of folk in the What Car? office have suggested that there might actually be something wrong with it.

To put everyone’s mind at ease, I took it along to Surrey Rolling Road (surreyrollingroad.co.uk) in Chertsey for a check-up. Expert Charlie Wright put the Picanto through its paces and it’s producing the exact amount of power it should at roughly the right revs.

Charlie explained that, while the torque curve was a bit bumpy, there certainly wasn’t anything to suggest an electrical or fueling glitch. The whole What Car? office will just have to accept that the Picanto is supposed to be as slow.

Week ending October 7
Total mileage 3090
Driven this week 493 miles

A 450-mile return trip to Bradford in the Picato this week drew my attention to a fuel gauge glitch. After brimming the tank, the needle was pointing at ‘full’, as you’d expect. But 100 miles later it hadn’t budged, so I started to get suspicious.

I pulled over for a coffee, and when I switched the ignition back on again the needle was aimed at the ‘3/4’ mark. I’ve booked the car into my local Kia dealer for further investigation.

Our cars: Kia Picanto - September


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