Fuel economy proved disappointing in the 1.0-litre Picanto, at only 38.1mpg overall – a huge shortfall compared with Kia's claimed 67.3mpg combined figure.

Although we’re more than willing to accept that our test route (which includes a good amount of B-road as well as town and motorway) will generally fall short of any official returns, the fact that we achieved 56.3mpg on our touring cycle shows just how distant the Picanto’s real-world consumption is from its claimed figure.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
The fuel gauge lingers around the top quarter for a deceptively optimistic period of time, then drops rapidly

Even running the car for more than 1000 miles of normal driving returned economy that varied from mid to high-30s. Still, with healthy CO2 emissions of just 99g/km, the Picanto’s well-suited motor and solid gearshift make light work of the sort of chaotic urban traffic that will make up its daily grind.

The five-door 1.0 Picanto, at £8695 to private buyers promises seriously cheap motoring. Admittedly the kit levels aren't fantastic at the lower end of the price range, but it doesn't cost an unjustifiable amount to move in to a higher-specification model.

Together with its seven-year warranty and generally likeable and durable nature (at least if other Kia models are anything to go by), the Picanto promises to be the best ownership prospect in its class.

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