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Kia Cerato hatch revealed

A five-door hatch has just debuted at the New York Motor Show and arrives in local showrooms in October.  It is expected to share the same engines and specifications as the sedan.

Lower and firmly set on its haunches, the five-door has all the design attributes of the sedan, from the new front grille, pronounced wedge shoulder line to the alloy wheels and lower bumper design.

Inside the car shares the same dashboard, but adds paddle shifters, push-button start and a navigation system. Depending on country, the five-door is available with three petrol engines, a 1.6-litre, 2.0-litre or 2.4-litre and a new six-speed manual or automatic transmission.

Australian cars are expected to continue with the 2.0-litre four.  Kia Motors Australia will confirm pricing and local specifications closer to the launch.

Although the Rio remains the South Korean’s strongest seller locally, adding a hatch to the Cerato lineup is expected to drive more sales in the competitive small car segment, which is dominated by hatches.

Kia Motors Australia CEO MK Kim has confirmed he Cerato 5-door hatch will go on sale in Australia during the fourth quarter of 2010.

"It will complete the Cerato range by joining the 4-door sedan and 2-door Koup," Kim says. "It will introduce key mechanical, feature and cosmetic changes to the Cerato range and join the Kia Soul in the important Small Hatch segment which so far this year has accounted for 51 per cent of total small vehicle sales."