The first-generation Kia ProCeed was the Korean manufacturer’s unsuccessful attempt to crack the three-door hatchback market. Kia kept the name then came back with a refreshed model that was relaunched as a five-door “shooting brake”. After making its first appearance as a concept car in 2017, the real thing is pretty darn close to that slightly out-there design.
Since 2018, and the reinvention of the ProCeed, this car has become known as a “shooting brake”. A what, what? Well, all this really means is that you’re buying an estate car that’s also kind of sporty.
And you can see this straight away in its looks. There’s a low roof with a coupé-style back to it that makes the car seem longer than it actually is. It also looks like they’ve taken some styling lessons from the Porsche Panamera when you consider the design of the rear end with its heavily sloping back window and the spaced-out lettering of the name on the tailgate.
This is probably the most adventurous that Kia has ever been in their design and, like all extreme looks, it’s a bit of a Marmite scenario that splits potential buyers down the middle.
This car has become known as a “shooting brake".
What’s it like to drive?
It’s a tough trick the ProCeed is trying to pull off. This car looks like it should be sporty to drive, but it also needs to be a practical type of estate car too.
We’ll get onto its practicality in a bit. As for the va-va-voom, it does quite well on for sportiness and handling. The firm suspension means it corners well, even with its longer-than-average body, and the steering is precise too.
Where it does fall down a little is in failing to cocoon you from the things that go bump in the road, which can send quite a judder through the cabin.
It’s always comfortable.
From the sporty lines that feature on the outside of the car, you might think the interior would be the same. It’s actually a pretty conventional layout inside – and one that’s easy to settle into. The main instruments are big, clear and well laid-out with a driver information screen featuring white symbols on a back background that are easy to see, even when the sun’s shining.
In the middle of the dash, there’s the infotainment eight-inch screen complete Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
The front seats are comfortable enough and pretty sporty in the way they’re contoured. There is a slight issue that comes from the low roof. Headroom is limited, front and back and, unless you’re careful, there’s a distinct risk of bumping your head as you get in.
The low roof combined with the steeply-raked back window means rear visibility is never that great. Luckily, rear parking sensors are fitted as standard to save you from that unexpected (and expensive) collision with a bollard.
Given that this is a car that might want to be in the running for purchase alongside more prestigious makes like Mercedes and BMW, the materials used throughout the interior are also just a little less fancy than you might expect.
The estate element of the car should mean that it has more than enough boot space for most people. And, thanks to the surface area when the rear seats are folded down, this is true – sort of.
The main issue we found is that the low roofline and relatively shallow tailgate mean it’s not that practical a space if what you’re trying to transport is particularly bulky.
On the plus side, it’s good for very long items and there are also plenty of under-floor storage compartments for those odds and ends that we all carry around with us and which might otherwise be cluttering up the cabin or rolling around on the floor.
Running costs and reliability
One thing that you definitely can say about the ProCeed is that it’s pretty light on fuel costs. If you’re going to be proceeding along the motorway network of the UK, then the 1.6-litre diesel engine is the logical choice and will do around 55 mpg.
For city and less long-distance driving, petrol makes more sense with the same-capacity engine getting you to within a whisker of 40 mpg.
What we love
We love the fact that Kia has followed through on the promise of a concept car to create a production model in exactly the same spirit. Its sleek and sporty lines make it the best-looking Kia yet and it’s also just about practical enough to be real competition for other estate cars.
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Town and country drivers
Less expensive than a Mercedes and a lot sportier than a Skoda, the Kia ProCeed bridges the gap while being pretty practical too. And with Kia's seven-year warranty it means peace-of-mid motoring as well.
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