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It's less of a fleet player than the existing five-door Ceed but the three-door Proceed adds a welcome dash of style to Kia's lower medium offering.
The lack of a pair of rear doors, plus the sporty tweaks to the bodywork, lend it much more of a coupe-style appearance than the sober standard version, while the 40mm lower ride height doesn't do the car's exterior presence any harm.
The interior is exceptionally well finished, refined and uncomplicated. The fact that it's a three-door will be a turn-off for many a corporate customer, but even so there's a reasonable amount of space inside, and a 380-litre boot is about average for the sector. The only real practicality snag is that the front seats don't return back to their original position once folded forward to allow passengers into the rear.
It may be sporty-looking, but the Proceed isn't what you'd call a driver's car. It's certainly a bit more responsive than the five-door, courtesy of the lower suspension, but it's quiet and comfortable rather than a raucous hot hatch. That said, the 128hp 1.6-litre diesel engine has plenty of mid-range pull and is reasonably quiet. It also offers respectable official figures of 65.7mpg and 112g/km.
The Kia's main failing is on costs.
It isn't expensive, especially when you consider the SE model's levels of kit, but a poorer-than-average RV, and emissions and power that aren't quite as low and high respectively as some key rivals, hinder it a little, and result in a still not unpalatable figure of 48.4ppm.
Seat's excellent new Leon SC posts a strong 44.9ppm in 2.0 TDI 150 SE guise and is both more powerful and cleaner than the Kia, while in-house rival Hyundai musters 46.1ppm from its equivalent three-door i30 in 1.6 CRDi 128 Satnav guise. The Proceed does trump Vauxhall's Astra GTC, though, which in 1.7 CRDi Ecoflex 130 Sport trim manages 50.9ppm.
Kia Pro Ceed 1.6 CRDi Eco Dynamics SE
Model price range
BIK 20/40% per month
7yrs 100,000 mls
Great looks and well built but three-door rivals better it on costs.