What's the used Kia Ceed estate like?
The Kia Cee'd is a very likeable five-door hatchback, but for those who require a little more practicality and extra boot space, there's the Cee'd Sportswagon estate. Pretty much identical to the hatchback but with a more voluminous boot, and with the longest warranty in the business, a used Cee'd Sportswagon makes for a pretty compelling package.
The Cee'd Sportswagon originally was offered with a choice of 89bhp 1.4-litre and 126bhp 1.6-litre diesel engines and a 99bhp 1.4-litre petrol. A facelift in 2015 brought the 1.6-litre diesel up to 134bhp, while a 118bhp turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine was added to flesh out the petrol range. Despite its small size, the 1.0-litre engine makes good progress if you're prepared to rev it a bit, while the 1.6-litre diesel has enough pace for most and much more low-end grunt than the petrols. It can be a little gruff around town, however, and when cold. All models came with a six-speed manual gearbox, although there was an optional six-speed automatic available on the 1.6-litre diesel.
Entry-level 1 versions got air conditioning, front electric windows, central locking, an iPod-compatible CD stereo and Bluetooth. Rear parking sensors were standard from 2 trim, while 3 and 4 added a rear-view camera. Meanwhile, 4 Tech added a system that can automatically steer the car into kerbside spaces. GT-Line and GT-Line S brought more aggressive exterior styling tweaks and some unique alloy wheel designs.
The Cee'd Sportswagon isn’t the most exciting car to drive, but it does everything with a surprising amount of competence. It's assured and stable in corners, with plenty of grip, but it's not exactly fun, with numb steering and handling that stays on the side of safe and predictable. However, the payoff for that is a comfortable ride that dismisses small road irregularities well. On top of that, it’s impressively refined in terms of road and wind noise, so it's a generally smooth and quiet car.
Inside is a good driving position and a pleasant dashboard with a logical layout, although rear visibility can be a little restricted by the rising window line at the rear. The infotainment system is wonderfully intuitive, unlike those of some rivals. Big, bold displays and clearly labelled controls are the order of the day, and the wealth of steering wheel-mounted buttons are easy to get used to. Overall, interior quality is good, with mostly pleasing materials on display, although some of the seat fabrics look a little cheap.
There’s plenty of room up front and rear passengers get enough leg and head room, although three abreast is a bit of a squeeze. The boot is impressively spacious and usefully quite square. It also has a low loading lip to make loading and unloading a breeze.
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