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Sedan vs. Hatchback – Part 1: Which car is right for you?

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When car searching, or just discussing vehicles in general, you are sure to come across models offering two different class options – “sedan” and “hatchback.” Sedans and hatchbacks are very similar in that they both have seating capacity for up to five with a spacious trunk for storage. So what makes a sedan a sedan and a hatchback a hatchback?

 

kia-rio-sedan

Kia Rio Sedan

 

Sedans are traditional car models generally with four-doors and two rows of seating. The roof curves down to the trunk, hinged below the rear window and the trunk space is separated from the car’s interior. In automotive styling terms, the sedan is a three-box design vehicle with its primary areas articulated into three “boxes” or “pillars”: the engine, passenger compartment, and trunk.

 

kia-rio-hatchback

Kia Rio Hatchback

 

Meanwhile, hatchbacks are two-box design vehicles with the passenger compartment and cargo space in one pillar. Although hatchbacks are very similar to sedans, they are usually available in either three-door (two passenger doors and the hatch) or five-door (four passenger doors and the hatch) models, since in the case of hatchbacks, the trunk’s lid is also counted as a door.

 

kia-motors-rio-hatchback

Kia Rio Hatchback

 

Unlike the sedan, the hatchback’s roof is extended, hinged at the top of the vehicle right above the rear window, maximizing accessibility to the cargo space from outside the car. This design also makes the cargo area fully accessible from inside the car.

 

kia-cerato-forte-hatchback

Kia Cerato (Forte) Hatchback

 

While both sedans and hatchbacks are very similar in general, hatchbacks offer more flexibility for cargo storage than most sedans, especially when the rear seats are folded down. More importantly, most hatchbacks offer better fuel economy compared to sedans thanks to their comparatively lighter weight.

 

kia-cerato-forte-sedan

Kia Cerato (Forte) Sedan

 

On the other hand, sedans tend to have a bigger engine, which is crucial for vehicle performance and handling. With the added weight of the trunk, sedans are more stable at high speeds compared to hatchbacks. The longer wheelbase also lets passengers enjoy more generous legroom. 

While it always boils down to personal preferences when deciding the car that is right for you, Kia Motors is constantly dedicated to create dynamic and diversified vehicles to fit any customer’s needs. In Part 2, we will talk more about our two models with both sedan and hatchback classifications, the Rio and Cerato (also known as Forte), so stay tuned for a closer look at them!

 

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