Editor: Jason “The Bok” Date: 03 Mar 2017
We first saw the Kia Sportage make its appearance on the SA market back in 2010. Offering great value for money and bold styling, the Sportage quickly started to gain much popularity and traction in the compact SUV market within our country.
Designed in Europe, this all-new Sportage brings with it unique Korean design elements and blends them incredibly well into a euro-chic styled body and in my opinion it looks absolutely fantastic. From the front-end, the Sportage has a further pronounced grill, which leads onto its all new LED lights and trademark “Ice Cube” style LED style fog lights. The GT-Line derivative also features striking two-tone wheels.
Despite the Kia Sportage forming part of the modern compact SUV market space, the term “compact” certainly does not fit its incredibly well appointed and spacious cabin. With an overall sense of space, air and light, the all-new Sportage features easily one of the best interiors within this category of vehicle.
The interior on the range-topping 1.6-litre GT-Line is available in two-tone leather (Canyon Beige; Grey or Brown Combinations). This blend of colour really does up-the-game and make the Kia stand out from any of its competitors. Chrome accents and an overall improved quality feel on all surfaces leave nothing to be desired.
Technology changes at an incredibly fast pace. With so much of our lives becoming dependent on our mobile companion smartphone and tablet based PC’s, it is a welcome addition to see that a wireless mobile charging pad has been placed in the centre of the Sportage cabin. This allows for charging of your device without clutter, while it sync’s to the vehicles multimedia infotainment centre.
In the centre of the dash, a large infotainment display features everything from Navigation with 3D mapping to media delivered through a wealth of sources including Bluetooth(phone pairing & audio), USB, and even streaming through your synced mobile device. The entire system is incredibly easy to navigate and has quick launch buttons located below the display.
Overall interior space and luggage loading capacity has increased considerably when compared to the previous generation Sportage. With rear loading capacity up from 465 to 503 litres with the seats folded up and 740 to 868 litres with the seats folded flat. The seats are also heated both in the front and rear of the vehicle and even cooled in the front, perfect for those hot summer days.
The entry engine of the range is the Sportage Ignite, powered by a 2.0-litre engine, producing 114 kW at 6 200 rpm and 192 Nm torque available at 4 000 rpm, while the vehicle which I spent a week testing featured Kia’s 1.6-litre turbocharged GDI (Gasoline Direct Injection) engine, which develops 130 kW at 5 500 rpm, and 265 Nm of torque between 1 500 and 4 500 rpm.
Overall power delivery is very impressive. The vehicle is swift off the light and nimble on winding roads.
Kia really has moved the goal posts in the compact SUV market with the latest generation Sportage. From its sporting looks, high-end interior and wealth of clever technological features, I can only envisage the Sportage sales going from strength to strength.
What does it cost in SA
2.0 Ignite – R369 995
2.0 CRDi EX – R487 995
2.4 GDI SX AWD – R557 995
2.0 CRDi SX AWD – R567 995
1.6 T-GDI GT-LINE AWD – R599 995 (As Tested)
Black and Canyon Beige upholstery is available as a no-cost option on SX AWD and GT Line models. The panoramic sunroof as fitted to the review vehicle is available at R12 500 on SX AWD models, while it comes standard on the range-topping GT Line. All Sportage models ship as standard with Kia’s 5-year/unlimited km warranty, 5-year/unlimited km roadside assistance as well as a 5-year/90 000km service plan.
Watch my full video review below: