KIA Proceed 2013 Road Test

The KIA Proceed (or pro_cee’d), if you will forgive its curious name, is the coupe version of the current KIA cee’d.

It sits alongside the 5-door hatchback in much the same way as the Renault Megane Sport Coupe does to the 5-door Megane, and the SEAT Leon 3-door does to the Leon 5-door.

There is very little sacrifice in practicality.

The boot still takes the same 380 litres. But the lower roofline brings the load capacity ceiling down to 1,225 litres.

And it looks great, thanks to the Peter Schreyer ‘tigernose’ styling that has now refreshed the entire Kia range.

Inside, there’s a nice piano black dash with 7” satnav screen and the ability to find 7 digit UK postcodes. The steering wheel adjusts in all directions and visibility of the dials through it is fine. Little quarterlight windows in the A pillars aid outward vis, too, helping avoid problems at road junctions and roundabouts.

Depending on whether you opt for the S or the SE, it comes on either 16” alloys with 205/55 R16 tyres, or 17” alloys with 225/45 R17 tyres. All the cars available for testing were on 17s.

We tried the diesel first to get an idea how the 100g/km engine would pull. And it does the job. Decently flexible at low revs and eager enough up the hills. Gearing in 5th worked out at about 35mph/1,000rpm. The companionable satnav did not wrong-slot us once on the complex route around Monte Carlo.

What’s odd is that ostensibly the same engine pulls the car a little faster but churns out an extra 12g/km CO2 in SE spec, and that can’t all be due to the wider 17” tyre.

As with the Kia cee’d and Hyundai i30, there are three degrees of steering assistance on offer: Comfort, Normal, and Sport. There is no steering feel at all in Comfort, and Sport just makes it stiff without any feel, so, though it’s a feature, they might as well not have bothered.

Unike the SEAT Leon coupe and Renault Megane coupe, but like the Audi A3, the pro_cee’d sticks with fully independent rear suspension.

On, then, to the 1.6GDI (the sunset orange car in the photos) and it was a pleasant surprise. I had not expected a 135PS 1.6 ‘coupe’ based on a standard hatchback to be remotely sporty, yet this one was actually very together. The steering (on Normal), the engine and the gear ratios were all nicely integrated for a bit of fun in the twisties, and it was particularly impressive rounding uphill hairpin bends. It would have been nice to film it in action, but by the time I got to the right road I was alone and it was already getting dark, so the cameras would probably have got nicked if I’d tried.

On the Autoroute, gearing worked out at 25mph per 1,000rpm in 6th. So no pain in the ears on a long motorway drive.

We have to wait until the summer before the pro_cee’d (and the cee’d) go GT and get a 205PS/265NM motor that’s really going to test the limits of the all independent suspension.

In the meantime, the Kia pro_cee’d is no cop-out coupe. You can get it free of annual tax and London Congestion Charge with the diesel engine. Or you can have warm hatch performance with the 1.6 GDI.

If you don’t have any kids to break your back strapping into the car, then no reason not to take the pro_cee’d coupe route, whether on the company or if you’re spending your own money.

And, just to rub it in, the 7 year warranty now includes 7 years of satnav upgrades.

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