HOT on the heels of the stunning StingerKiahas introduced another looker in the shape of the newProCeed.
TheProCeedis the third member and flagship of the newCeedrange and is a very attractive shooting brake that combines all the space and versatility of an estate in a five-door coupe like body.
Designed, engineered and built in Europe the newcomer shares only the bonnet and front wings of theCeedhatchback and is offered with a choice of three engines, two transmissions and three trim levels.
It boasts all the latest safety and advanced driver assistance systems as well as its bold sporty design.
Longer and lower than theSportswagon, theProCeed features the iconic 'tiger nose' grille of its siblings but its striking looks make it stand out from the rest of the range.
Its rakedrooflineflows nicely downwards to the rear which really gives the car its sporting stance.
A wide rear bumper is combined with dual-tip exhausts and theProCeedname isspelledout in bold letters below LED tail-lights that span the tailgate to give the car a unique light signature.
Good-looking alloys enhance the sense of sportiness and a lot of customers will buy this car for its looks alone -Kiaexpects it to take 20 per cent of allCeedsales.
Priced from £23,835 it is a bit of a bargain and it turned lots of heads in and around trendy Barcelona where the car was launched.
Offered with a choice of three engines starting with a 1.4-litre T-GDiunit which features in a number ofKiaand Hyundai models.
It provides a smooth and relaxing drive with a 0-60 mph time of 8.8 seconds and a top speed of 127mph.
That is with the six-speed manual box and with the seven-speed autoDCTit is just three miles an hour slower on top speed with the sprint taking 9.1 seconds.
CombinedWLTPeconomy figures are 45.6mpg for the manual and 44.8 for the automatic.
Diesel fans will be happy thatKiastill offers it as a choice with a 1.6-litre 134bhp unit returning a combined figure of 56.5mpg.
It takes a flat 10 seconds to reach 60mph before going on to a top speed of 124mph. With the automatic box it is barely slower and only 2mpg thirstier.
If its performance you are after opt for the 1.6 T-GDipower plant which only comes with the seven-speed autoDCTbox and delivers a top speed of 140mph with acceleration to 60mph in just 7.2 seconds. It has a combinedWLTPfigure of 39.3mpg and is sure to be popular.
The cabin shares much with the lesserCeedhatchback but that is no bad thing since it is well built and features good quality plastics and soft-touch finishes.
The instruments are well laid out and easy to read and use and there is plenty space for four adults.
The dash is dominated by a floating eight-inch touchscreen which is easy to operate and all three trim levels offer generous kit.
Standard equipment on the GT-Line includes 17-inch alloys, LED rear lights, heated front seats and steering wheel as well as a reversing camera.
The GT model adds larger alloys, LED headlights and half-leather-suede seats along with its larger engine.
The GT-Line S model is the most expensive at £28,685 but for that you also get a longer list of goodies including a panoramic sunroof, adaptive cruise control, bags of other safety aids, a premium sound system, a self-parking function, privacy glass on the rear windows and tailgate, a high gloss black and satin chrome radiator grille and other styling touches.
All models feature a good navigation system along with AppleCarPlayand Android Auto. The top model also has wireless mobile phone charging.
A Drive Mode Select system is fitted to the cars with theDCTtransmission. The Normal setting maximises the potential for fuel efficiency and relaxed driving while Sport mode enhances throttle response and adds weight to the steering.
I sampled all three engines in theProCeedand they were all happy when cruising at motorway speeds or being pushed on winding country roads.
The steering is sharp and accurate and the ride supple with stiffer front and rear springs providing increased body control. It is agile and stable even under hard cornering and is a match for many hot hatches.
It may be a cracking looker but theProCeedis still very practical and versatile with a huge 594 litres of boot space. That is more than many estate cars offer - even from the class above.
Split folding rear seats increase the space when collapsed and an underfloor storage area is provided for smaller items and the load bay has a net to secure items and prevent them rolling around.
A smart power tailgate on the flagship model opens automatically when it detects the smart key near it and it also has a luggage floor rail system.
TheProCeedis a hugely attractive alternative to standard hatchbacks or estates and it brings a dash of style to a mainstream segment. It really is in a class of its own and it deserves to do well.