By 'eck! Kia takes northern accolade

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There seem to be awards for just about anything these days but the latest email press release to have dropped into our inbox was one we couldn't ignore.

The Kia Picanto has just been awarded its 'first major accolade' and is now officially the Northern Car of the Year as judged by the Northern Group of Motoring Writers.

Without a hint of irony, Kia's Managing Director, Michael Cole, gushed: "We are delighted to get this award from such a well-known group of fair-minded and practical journalists. This is the first major award for Picanto but I don't think it will be the last."

Not wanting to deny the qualities of the new Picanto - after all, Autoblog's very own Martyn Collins described it as "a very grown-up city car" when he came back from a test drive (more details to follow) - we just thought we'd have a bit of fun. It being Friday and all...