Geely introduced the MK in 2006 as a compact sedan slotted above the CK, which arrived a year earlier. Much like the CK, the MK remained largely unchanged since its launch, featuring the same styling cues inside and out for the 2014 model year. Sold in various Asian and Eastern European markets, as well as in Australia and New Zealand, the compact sedan is motivated by a 1.5-liter, four-cylinder powerplant shared with a host of other Geely products.

As Geely is considering bringing its cars and crossovers to the United States in the near future, we decided to have a closer look at the company’s current lineup. This time around is the MK’s turn to join these TopSpeed pages in a review that analyzes the potential of such a vehicle for the North American market. Read on to find out what the Geely MK is all about and whether or not it has what it takes to compete in one of America’s most crowded markets.

Click past the jump to read more about the Geely MK.

  • 2014 Geely MK
  • Year:
    2014
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Transmission:
    5-speed manual
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    92 @ 6000
  • Torque @ RPM:
    94 @ 5200
  • Displacement:
    1.5 L
  • 0-60 time:
    16 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    99 mph
  • Price:
    7300
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2014 Geely MK Exterior
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2014 Geely MK Exterior
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2014 Geely MK Exterior
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The simple body lines, the large headlamps and taillights, and the tall trunk lid remind me of the facelifted first-generation Chevrolet Aveo.

Granted, the MK looked somewhat modern when it was launched back in 2006 — I can’t say the same thing about the awful CK — but the lack of major updates makes this sedan extremely dated for 2014. The simple body lines, the large headlamps and taillights, and the tall trunk lid remind me of the facelifted first-generation Chevrolet Aveo. Of course, the MK is a tad crisper as far as styling goes, but it’s important to stress the said Aveo was introduced in 2005.

Sure, the MK is the kind of affordable sedan that could become popular in emerging markets, but that exterior design won’t cut it here in the United States. Not with cars such as the Honda Civic or the Kia Forte around.

Exterior Dimensions

Length 4,342 MM (170.94 Inches)
Width 1,692 MM (66.61 Inches)
Height 1,435 MM (56.49 Inches)
Wheelbase 2,502 MM (98.50 Inches)
Wheel tread (front/rear) 1,450/1,431 MM (57.08/56.33 Inches)
Minimum ground clearance 150 MM (5.90 Inches)

Interior

2014 Geely MK Interior
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2014 Geely MK Interior
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2014 Geely MK Interior
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There is, however, one tiny detail that makes the MK's interior stand out.

The interior is equally unimpressive and it reeks of rock-hard plastic surfaces and dated features. I would give Geely some credit for using light colors inside, but the gray plastic covering the dashboard, the steering wheel and the door panels looks obnoxiously cheap. The seats are wrapped in cloth (no, there’s no leather option), while the center stack includes a radio, A/C vents and switches and a couple of buttons.

There is, however, one tiny detail that makes the MK’s interior stand out. The instrument cluster isn’t located behind the steering wheel, as with most automobiles, but atop the center stack. While it may be a unique feature, the center-mounted instrument panel does very little to improve the MK’s cheap-looking interior.

Drivetrain

2014 Geely MK Exterior
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Granted, the MK won't take you anywhere in a hurry.

Motivating the MK is Geely’s ubiquitous MR479QX, four-cylinder engine. Seen on just about every model from the Chinese brand, the 1.5-liter unit generates 92 horsepower and 94 pound-feet of torque in the MK. Mated to a five-speed manual, the four-pot enables the sedan to reach 62 mph from a standing start in 16 seconds before hitting a top speed of 99 mph. Yeah, the MK’s in no rush to get you anywhere.

It’s not like Geely doesn’t have more powerful versions of this engine, but for some reason it refuses to let the MK receive more ponies. On the other hand, the smaller CK sedan hides a 100-horsepower, 100-pound-feet variant of the same unit under its hood. Quite peculiar, don’t you think?

Drivetrain/Specifications

Model MR479QA
Output volume 1.498
Maximum power 92 HP @ 6,000 RPM
Maximum torque 94 LB-FT @ 5,200 RPM
Compression ratio 9.8
Transmission 5MT
Top Speed 160 km/h (99 mph)
0-100 km/h (62 mph) 16 seconds

Prices

2014 Geely MK Exterior
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Since the Geely MK isn’t available in the U.S., there’s no pricing information for North America. However, the sedan retails from $8,999 in Australia, which converts to around $7,300 as of 12/22/2014. That would be mighty cheap for North American buyers, but we must keep in mind that the MK is a poorly equipped car, featuring very few of the modern amenities we’re used to nowadays.

Worse yet, the sedan lacks electronic stability control and features only ABS, electronic brake distribution and two front airbags as far as safety goes. Even if Geely wants to bring it Stateside, the MK would fail to pass the NHTSA’s demanding safety tests. All told, don’t get your hopes up for an ultra-cheap MK in U.S. showrooms anytime soon.

Competition

Kia Forte

2014 Kia Forte High Resolution Exterior
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The Kia Forte received an overhaul for the 2014 model year and, needless to say, the sedan is not half bad. In fact, compare it to the Geely MK and it’s quite impressive. Jokes aside, the new Forte sports a modern exterior that ditches the boxy and boring styling of Kia’s past. The Forte received the company’s Tiger Nose, nicely sculpted body lines and deep creases front and rear. The interior gained more high-quality materials, new convenience features and extra legroom and shoulder room.

Two engines are available with the redesigned Forte sedan. A 1.8-liter four-cylinder generating 148 horsepower and 131 pound-feet of torque and a 2.0-liter four-pot that cranks out 173 ponies and 154 pound-feet. Pricing for the Kia Forte begins from $15,900 and goes beyond $19,400 for the range-topping EX trim.

Honda Civic

2014 - 2015 Honda Civic High Resolution Exterior
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The Honda Civic is the popular choice of the non-luxury compact segment. Refreshed for 2014, the Civic received minor changes inside and out, with a bunch of new convenience features added for the 2015 model year. The interior is now equipped with a new Display Audio infotainment system and a revised split-design dashboard. Thanks to softer materials and new color options, the Civic looks more upscale on the inside.

Under the hood, base Civic trims get a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder unit making 143 ponies and 129 pound-feet. Customers looking for more power can opt for the 2.4-liter, inline-four that cranks out 205 horsepower and 174 pound-feet of twist. The six-speed manual transmission carries over, while the traditional automatic has been replaced by a CVT. Pricing for the Honda Civic Sedan begins from $18,490.

Conclusion

2014 Geely MK Exterior
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While Geely will likely bring some of its products to the U.S. sooner or later, the MK won’t be one of them. The sedan is simply too dated and the build quality too poor to stand a chance in North America. Not to mention that the NHTSA will never allow a car like this to hit U.S. streets. A redesign is also out of the question, as a heavily modified MK isn’t financially feasible for Geely when it can continue to sell it as it is in emerging Asian markets without changes.

  • Leave it
    • Dated design and cheap interior
    • Ancient, underpowered drivetrain
    • Poor safety standards
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