Having a finger in every pie is very satisfying for KIA.
It means you can offer the wide range of buyers something and you are not hit too hard if tastes change and a design goes out of fashion.
With the resurgence of interest in estate cars for load-lugging over and above the more limited hatchback shapes it was natural that their highly successful Ceed family car would be joined by a ‘bigger brother some the same mother’.
And being KIA, the style was very important so the five-door Proceed appeared as a semi-estate in 2018 after a few years on sale wtih three-doors and a station wagon badge from 2015.
Now the current model, albeit five years old, is the most practical of the series and can still cut a dash in any situation. The familiar semi-estate or shooting brake so popular with the country-set will not take the biggest loads of a full estate with more upright fifth door, but in reality who does need more than its 1,545 litres?
You have a choice of models in the Proceed range.For this year, KIA revamped its Proceed range and there are just two models on sale, the GT-Line from a little over £26,660 and for another £5,605 the GT-Line S which comes with bigger 18-inch alloys, big tilting and sliding sunroof, leather and suede upholstery, electric driver’s seat, a 12-inch screen, smart parking, eight speakers Premium audio, wireless phone charging, four heated seats and blind spot detection.
We tested the GT-Line S with the familiar 1.5 litre turbo petrol engine and seven-speed dual clutch transmission, which is a very good combination offering either normal or sporting modes through a switch on the transmission tunnel and which transformed the car’s responses as desired.
Take up was extremely smooth, the changes quick and clean with an edginess once out of the normal setting accompanied by a subtle colour change to the main dials infront of the driver.
The main controls and the secondary swtiches on the wheel-spokes and console operated with hushed effectiveness, the brakes were very progressive and strong while the steering was sharp and vibration-free.
There was some noise as the engine was pressed to perform but it was not too intrusive and the automatic box was silent as well as smooth.
The front strut and rear multi-link suspension was a little noisy over bad surfaces and the accompanying road rumbles were ever present in the background.
Access into the cabin was easy and the seats were generously sized with a lot of adjustment range infront and even some good support for those behind. The combination of supportive and well shaped seats and the Proceed’s suspension combined to produce a good overall ride.
Putting things into the boot was also easy with a powered tailgate, low floor and reasonabl size, quickly extending as the off-set split seat backs were dropped.
Oddments room was good throughout for family car as well and the Proceed lacks little in the way of equipment to make longer journeys pass without being bored wtih full i-phone and android compatibility, plug-in points and a really big infotainment display.
Visibillity is generally good to front and sides with sensors monitoring the surroundings but the steeply sloping c-pillar and small rear window restrict what you can see over the shoulder or when reversing so the camera and parking sensors really come into their own.
The market for semi-estates or shooting brakes is comparatively small in the UK but this is a big player in the sector and its rarity is a strong reason to buy at a competitive price.
Kia Proceed GT Line S
- Price: £32,270
- Mechanical: 157bhp 4cyl 1500cc turbo-petrol, 7sp DCT,
- Maximum speed: 130mph
- 0-60mph: 8.8 sec
- Consumption: 28mpg
- Emissions: 138gkm
- Insurance group: 19D
- BIK: 32%, £255FY, £180SR
- Warranty: 7yrs/ 100,000 miles
- Size: L4.61m, W1.80, H1.43m
- Luggage: 594 to 1,545 litres
- Kerb weight: 1,425kg
For: Stylish, very comfortable, good controls, smooth powertrain, quality finish
Against: Poor rear visibility, limited bootspace four-up, some road and engine noise.