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Road Test


Kia K2700

by Ken Walker

13th December, 2007


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The Kia K2700 is the sole representative for the South Korean brand in Australia's booming new commercial vehicle market.

Kia's other commercial vehicle, the popular Pregio van, has been dropped from the local line-up.

For our drive report, we look at that sole surviving commercial vehicle from Kia, a truck known simply as K2700. K for Kia, 2700 for its 2,700 cc diesel engine (2,665 cc to be precise).

The vehicle was fitted with the optional steel cargo tray and drop-sides. The load carrying capacity is rated at 1 tonne.The cargo tray is a very handy 3,110 mm in length enabling longish items to be loaded. A low loading height is a good feature. This enhances the usage of the K2700.At 1,630 mm wide, the tray tucks in neatly behind the cabin. There are a good number of tie-down lugs along each side. The cost of the fitted cargo tray, which is an option, is $1,500.

The 2.7 litre 4-cylinder in-line diesel engine develops 58 kW at 4,000 rpm and has a maximum torque rating of 164 Nm at 2,400 rpm.The gearbox is a 5 speed manual unit. Tyres are 195R14 on the front and 5.00R12 duals on the rear.A spare wheel for each size is slung underneath the chassis at the tailgate end of the cargo tray.The smaller wheel is mounted above the larger spare and is lowered by the usual chain winch set-up.

On the freeways and highways, the K2700 gets along very well, without fuss. Although, as is often the case with low-powered vehicles, a down shift to 4th gear was required on some of the long hills we encountered. Travelling light (unloaded), the ride was rough except on the smoothest of bitumen surfaces, but remember this vehicle is built to carry a 1,000 kg load and has the suspension to do just that. Unfortunately, the Next Car team did not get to carry a load on this occasion, much to our disappointment.Around town, Kia K2700 is easy to manoeuvre, and this is a good thing.

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Cabin appointments are more car-like than one would usually expect in a low-end market truck, with Kia's standard equipment list for the K2700 including power windows, remote central locking, air conditioning, AM/FM radio with single disc CD player and, of course, power steering with a height adjustable steering wheel. External mirrors are two-stage with the lower section being adjustable to view the kerb or the rear wheels. A 3-stage headlight leveling switch is located on the right-hand side of the dash facia. The K2700 is well equipped for a light truck. Kia offer a rubber floor mat for the cabin floor, a dash mat, weather shields, tow bar and a polished alloy nudge bar as optional extras.Metallic and mica paint is also available at a cost of $230.

The Kia K2700 has seating for 3 with a lap only belt restraint in the centre position. Folding the centre backrest down provides a handy work area and two cup holders. Lifting the passenger side seat allows access to the engine bay.

There are no airbags fitted to the Kia K2700.

Mechanically, this truck has a double wishbone with a torsion bar front suspension and a leaf spring rear end.Stopping power is provided through a dual circuit hydraulic, power assisted vacuum system with ventilated discs at the front and duo servo drums with self adjuster at the rear. A load sensing proportioning valve is also fitted.

Overall, the Kia K2700, which retails at around $25,000.00 plus statutory charges and dealer fees, represents good value for money.Paint and panel fit were excellent and there were no noticeable rattles in the cabin. On that basis, I must indicate my complete satisfaction with the production quality.

Kia will be releasing an upgraded model of their light duty truck in early 2008.

In the meantime, the Kia K2700 demonstrates why the South Korean brand has been able to carve out a share of the lucrative commercial vehicle market.

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Other Kia content: here.

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