by Declan Glynn

The all-new KIA Ceed SW (Sportswagon) shares everything, except the rear, with the new Ceed hatchback, while an extended rear overhang provides the new SW with an additional 97-litres of space over the previous generation model.

The boot lip is also substantially lower, with the lower lift-over height making it easier to load heavier items into the boot.

Compared with its predecessor, it is 95mm longer at 4600mm, 20mm wider at 1800mm and 20mm lower at 1465mm.

As with its hatchback sibling, at the front of the new SW there is the familiar ‘tiger nose’ grille and castellated upper windscreen, while the swept-back headlight design and lowered, widened, front air intake is reminiscent of KIA’s stylish and sporty Stinger GT.

The eye-catching rear LED daytime running lights give the new Ceed SW greater visibility and recognition on the road.

The striking design is a signature feature of the new Kia Ceed family, while ‘Ice Cube’ LED daytime running lights and High Beam Assist (HBA) also come as standard.

The sporty low profile is extended by the chrome-framed windows and sleek roof rails.

The new KIA Ceed SW offers more room than ever before. C-segment estate customers’ expectations go beyond cargo capacity, so KIA’s designers have ensured versatility and usability are key strengths for the new Ceed SW, making it one of the most practical cars in its class.

With the split-folding rear seats dropped, the boot floor is completely flat. Every Ceed SW features an underfloor box to secure or hide smaller items, as well as a tonneau cover and a bag hook to prevent groceries and other items rolling around the load bay.

Cargo capacity is an impressive 625-litres with the rear seat backs in place, and a huge 1,694-litres with the rear seats folded.

The new Ceed SW is only available in one trim – K3.

This generously-equipped model comes complete with a vast range of features, such as (to name but a few) LED daytime-running-lights (ice-cube effect), tinted windows, electrically folding and heated exterior mirrors, cloth and artificial leather seats, USB charger, Android Auto & Apple CarPlay, 7” LCD infotainment screen, rear camera and much, much more.

Engine options in the new Ceed SW consist of a 3-cylinder, 1.0-litre T-GDi petrol engine producing 120bhp, and a 4-cylinder 1.6-litre CRDi diesel engine with 115bhp.

The annual road tax is just €200 and €190 respectively, thanks to impressively low Co2 emissions.

Both engines are available with a standard 6-speed manual gearbox, with no automatic gearbox currently available. A 7-speed automatic gearbox is, however, available in the SW’s hatchback sibling.

On test was a new Ceed SW K3 in 1.0-litre T-GDi guise.

This front-wheel-drive car is capable of a 0-100km sprint in a respectable 10.9-seconds, and can reach a top speed of 192km/h.

Front suspension is by MacPherson struts and an anti-roll bar, while a multi-link arrangement with trailing arm and anti-roll bar are employed at the rear.

On the road the new Ceed SW is composed, nimble, and drives with poise and precision. The cloth and leather-effect seats in my test car were very supportive, and there is ample adjustment available on the driver’s seat to ensure that even tall drivers can get comfortable behind the wheel.

Thankfully, rear seat comfort hasn’t been forgotten – space in the rear seats is very nearly as generous as in the front.

As a result, there is enough room for a six-foot tall passenger to sit behind an equally tall driver, and the soft central seat and almost flat floor means there is space for three adults to sit side-by-side.

The 1.0-litre T-GDi K3 model is competitively priced at just €25,295 (ex-works), with the 1.6-litre CRDi model costing an additional €2,655.

As is the case across the entire KIA passenger car range, a 7-Year/150,000km warranty is standard.