Kia Carens 2.0 Elite Review
And then there was one...

Story by Jeremy R. Chua, pictures by Azfar Hashim
4 Feb 2009
 

It's going to be a tough fight, but just based on its equipment level, the Carens already has its trump card all set...

At a glance

Motorists in search of a minivan will, more often than not, find themselves lost in a sea of options from Japanese carmakers. So where are the Koreans?

Oh, they’re definitely around. It’s just that the two Korean giants haven’t concentrated on churning out as many big vehicles as the competition. In our local market, three SUVs and a lone MPV stand between them amongst the myriad of Japanese models.

And that lone MPV in question is none other than the Kia Carens Elite.     

Wait a second – “elite”? What comes to mind when you hear the word “elite”? Is it images of yourself soaring above the clouds in your private jet as you sip champagne? Well, maybe not. But in simple terms, “elite” can simply refer to anything that’s way beyond the ordinary.

Just what has Kia done to the Carens MPV, that makes it worthy of the Elite badge bestowed upon it? 

The Carens’ front facade bears a familiar semblance to that of the Rio’s.  Those headlamps may differ ever-so-slightly and its grille might be larger, but in essence, it’s still the same design language.      

Moving around the car, you’ll notice how the Carens actually looks like a car that’s had its roofline stretched higher and its wheelbase lengthened. For an MPV that measures 4,545mm from tip to tip, it somehow managed to look quite compact. It could even be mistaken for a station wagon, don’t you think so?

It all looked quite ordinary – till we noticed the subtle hint of a (yes) roof lip where the third brake lamp was. The squarish rear door and its surrounding combination tail lamps are reminiscent of the Sportage’s rear-end. With that in mind, the tail is easily the most modern looking part of the Carens. Now if only the designers had given the car the same treatment all around…

 


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Engine

Engine Capacity 1998cc
Engine Type Inline 4
Compression Ratio 10.5:1
Bore x Stroke (86 x 86)mm
Power 145bhp @ 6000rpm
Torque 189Nm @ 4250rpm
Power to Weight 102.3 bhp per ton

Performance

Acceleration 11.9s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 181 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 11.8 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 4 -speed Auto
Drive Type FF

Measurements

Body Type MPV
Dimension
(L x W x H)
(4545 x 1800 x 1650) mm
Wheelbase 2700 mm
Turning Circle 5.4 metres
Kerb Weight 1418 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 55 L

Brakes

Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs