Kia’s naming policy can be confusing at the best of times, and the new Cee’d Sportswagon is no different. It’s far from sporty to drive – although you can fit plenty of sports gear in its 528-litre boot.
The swept-back headlights and ‘tiger snout’ grille give the Sportswagon a smart, upmarket look, although the dumpy rear doesn’t quite live up to the front end’s visual promise.
It’s a comfortable car – the suspension absorbs speed bumps and potholes well, and the feeling is not unlike a big old Citroen. So it does a good job of discouraging spirited driving, but compensates by being relaxing around town and on longer motorway trips.
The interior is nicely built from a wide mix of soft-touch and glossy black plastics, plus a smattering of chrome.
Although closely related to the hatch, the estate boasts an extra 21mm front and 2mm rear headroom, plus a boot that holds 528 litres of luggage with the seats up, or 1,642 litres when they’re lowered.
The 1.6-litre diesel engine sounds gruff, especially when cold, although the noise calms down at higher speeds. There’s a decent 260Nm of torque from 2,000rpm, the six-speed box is slick and the steering light.
Optional FlexSteer lets you choose from three levels of steering feel: Sport, Normal or Comfort. You’ll probably try them all once, decide there’s no real difference between them and leave it on the default Comfort setting.