The cee’d has played a significant role in Kia’s sustained growth and success since its introduction to the European market nine years ago.
The 1,000,000th cee’d to roll off Kia’s European production line was a high powered Kia cee’d GT five door hatchback in ‘Fusion White’. The car and its 201hp 1.6-litre T-GDI (turbo gasoline direct injection) engine were both produced in Slovakia – the car is destined for a buyer in the Netherlands.
Manufactured exclusively for the European market, at Kia’s state-of-the-art production facility in Žilina, Slovakia, the cee’d accounts for over 21 percent of Kia’s total European sales. More than 75,960 were sold in 2014, making the Kia cee’d the brand’s second best-selling model in Europe after the highly-acclaimed Sportage compact SUV, which is also produced in Žilina.
In the UK, Kia sold 13,189 cee’ds in 2014 and is the third best-selling vehicle, behind the ever popular Sportage and Picanto.
Artur Martins, Vice President Marketing of Kia Motors Europe, commented: “The cee’d has helped establish Kia in Europe as a maker of high-quality, well-designed cars, and it has been one of the key drivers behind our continued growth and success in the region. I’d like to congratulate all my colleagues at Kia Motors Slovakia on this latest milestone, and thank the million customers who have made the cee’d such a popular model.”
Martins added: “Since we began production in 2006, the cee’d range has come a long way, with Sportswagon and pro_cee’d three-door hatchback models expanding the line-up and taking us into new segments of the market. Our high-performing GT models, launched in 2013, have once again put us in front of a more emotional buyer, seeking great design and an enjoyable driving experience. Our future plans for the cee’d will continue to develop a model that has been the foundation upon which we have built the success of the Kia brand in Europe.”
Later this year, Kia will launch the GT Line model to the range, which blends the style and sportiness of the cee’d GT and pro_cee’d GT with the versatility of the conventional cee’d model line-up. The new GT Line specification will be available for all three members of the Kia model family (five- and three-door hatchbacks and Sportswagon estate).
In addition, the new cee’d GT Line signifies the arrival of Kia’s all-new downsized 1.0-litre T-GDI (turbo gasoline direct injection) engine and new seven-speed double-clutch transmission in Europe. The new engine and transmission are engineered to improve fuel consumption and emissions while offering strong, willing performance and immediate responses to driver input
cee’d: a major turning point in Kia’s history
The launch of the first-generation cee’d marked a new era for Kia’s growth in Europe, as the very first Kia model to be designed, engineered and manufactured exclusively in Europe. Designed at Kia’s Frankfurt Design Centre, the cee’d surpassed the rising expectations of existing Kia buyers and attracted European consumers who hadn’t yet considered Kia.
The cee’d’s name highlights its European origins, with a model code indicative of Kia’s commitment to the continent. Codenamed ‘ED’ during the development of the first, standing for ‘European Design’. Meanwhile, the ‘CE’ symbolises the car’s conception, development and production in – and for – the Community of Europe.
An instant success, 646,305 units of the first-generation cee’d were manufactured from 2006 to 2012. The second-generation of the car has found 353,695 buyers across Europe since its introduction, offering a high-quality, classy interior, striking exterior design and wide range of fuel-efficient engines. Like every Kia car sold in Europe, the cee’d benefits from Kia’s unique 7-Year, 100,000 mile warranty.
The cee’d model family has grown to a three-strong model line-up, incorporating the five-door cee’d hatchback, cee’d Sportswagon and pro_cee’d three-door hatchback. In 2013, Kia developed the range further with the introduction of the high-powered cee’d GT and pro_cee’d GT, Kia’s first ever performance models. Both performance models are also manufactured in Žilina.
Last year, Kia produced over 323,000 cars and 493,000 engines in Slovakia, representing a 12-month production record for the company. Kia Motors Slovakia employs over 3,800 staff, working three shifts on the modern production line.
Since volume production began, the popular Kia cee’d model family has accounted for half of overall production, followed by the Sportage and Venga. Kia models from the facility are exported to 76 global markets, with the majority of cars going to buyers across Europe and Russia. From 2006, Russia has accounted for over one fifth of all cee’d sales (207,597), while the car has also proven popular in the UK (102,858) and Germany (99,080).