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Kia Ceed Sportswagon: Test Drive Review

Date: 05 October 2012   |   Author: David Motton

Category: Lower medium
P11D price: £21,040
Key rival: Ford Focus Estate

Kia says the new Ceed estate puts the 'Sports' in 'Sportswagon'. That's stretching things a bit, but there are plenty of less emotive reasons why the new load carrier makes a sensible choice for business users.

There's no petrol version, but there are two frugal diesel engines: a 1.4-litre and a 1.6. On paper, the 1.4 CRDi looks tempting. Official economy of 67.3mpg should keep running costs down, and emissions of 109g/km put the car in the 15% BIK band. However, it's short of overtaking punch, and at times we had to change down a couple of gears to hold speed on steep hills. What's more, the smaller of the two diesels is only available in entry-level 1 spec (five trim levels are available - 1, 2, 3, 4 and 4 Tech), which lacks the toys to keep user-choosers happy.

For a small penalty in economy (64.2mpg) and CO2 (116g/km), the 1.6 looks a better bet, although one should bear in mind that it sits in the 17% BIK band so would put a bigger dent in a pay packet. Combined economy of 64.2mpg, too, can't match the fuel efficiency of Ford Focus Estate 1.6 TDCi 115hp (67.3mpg) or a Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer 1.7 CDTi 125hp (70.6mpg), but it's not miles off, and on the road, the larger engine's extra power and torque is immediately noticeable. The stronger mid-range means slower traffic can be passed with more confidence, and the 1.6 should cope better when the luggage space is fully loaded.

The Ceed's boot compares favourably with most rivals', although it's actually a fraction smaller than the old SW's. With the rear seats upright there's 528 litres to fill - that's 52 litres more than a Focus Estate, and also

puts the Astra's 500 litres in the shade. However, it's some way behind the Skoda Octavia's 605 litres. The load space can be extended to 1642 litres by folding the rear seats down, which is as much room as some cars from the class above offer. However, the seat bases need to be tipped forward before the seat backs can fold flat. All versions have storage space under the boot floor and load-securing net hooks.

Kia Cee’d 1.6 CRDi 3
P11D price£21,040
Model price range£16,895-£24,795
Fuel consumption64.2mpg
CO2 (tax) 116g/km (17%)
BIK 20/40% per month£60/£119
Service interval1yr/20,000mls
Insurance (1-50)group 13
Warranty7yrs/100,000mls
Boot space min/max528/1642 litres
Engine size/power1582cc/126bhp
Top speed/0-62mph120mph/10.8secs
On sale September 2012
Score8/10
VerdictA practical and
well equipped small estate
with low emissions


Verdict


A practical and well equipped small estate with low emissions
8/10

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