Drive favourite Kia gets lots of plaudits for its electric cars - the jumbo EV9 featured on these pages recently shows just how ambitious this brand is, and how rapid its ascent - but it does the ‘ordinary’ stuff very well, too, writes William Scholes.
The Proceed is a case in point. One of several bodystyles spun off the Ceed hatchback platform, this sleek estate in the ‘shooting brake’ style is easily one of the most attractive family cars on sale today.
Kia pitches the ProCeed as an upmarket proposition, and is currently offered only in sporty GT-Line and GT-Line S trims. Equipment levels are extensive - you’ll not be wanting for anything - but it’s the normal stuff that Kia does so well, such as how straightforward it is to pair a phone to the car, or how simple it is to operate the radio, heating controls or sat-nav. It makes it all the more frustrating that so many car-makers get this important stuff so wrong, so often. I could, however, have done without the large sunroof of the GT-Line S test car, which robbed me of some much-needed headroom.
Performance is adequate - the ProCeed isn’t quite as quick as it looks like it should be, in other words - and this is a thoroughly pleasant, easygoing car to drive
You can only get the ProCeed with a 1.5-litre petrol turbo engine. Performance is adequate - it isn’t quite as quick as it looks like it should be, in other words - and this is a thoroughly pleasant, easygoing car to drive.
Apart from one thing. The test car had a seven-speed double-clutch automatic gearbox. These are usually pretty forgettable devices. Not so here. Instead, it would lurch and jump in slow traffic, as if it couldn’t decide whether it should be in first, second or third gear. Its behaviour in the CastleCourt multi-storey car park was a little alarming too, with the car again seemingly undecided as to what gear it should be in as we wound our way up the ramp - again in stop-start traffic - to the top floor. Not confidence inspiring.
My recommendation would be to stick with the six-speed manual gearbox and enjoy what is otherwise a stylish and thoroughly pleasant family car.