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Unread 2018-08-21, 11:28 AM   #26
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Mysterious Kia Sportage Caught Testing with a Niro EV

Directly from South Korea we got this spy picture of a fully camouflaged Kia Sportage parked in a parking lot that could being tested alongside of a Kia Niro EV.

Looking at the pictures, this Sportage showed a high level of camouflage, and we can imagine that could be a facelifted model with the Mild Hybrid technology that is finishing its test with companyís larger range EV.
Apparently the Sportage looks the same despite of the camouflage if you compare with the recently facelift has just launched in South Korea as well as overseas markets, even the alloy wheels.
Despite that, have we caught Kia testing a future Hybrid, Plug-in Hybrid or even EV prototypes of the next generation Kia Sportage? Place your bets!

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Unread 2019-01-10, 09:44 PM   #27
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The 2018 Kia Sportage SX Is a Great Daily Driver, But Gas Mileage Leaves a Lot to Be Desired

If you put every standard-issue crossover on the market right now into a blender, youíd have a broken blender. But if you did it figuratively, youíd end up with something like the 2018 Kia Sportage SX. Itís simple, welcoming and just fancy enough to make you feel good. Just donít expect it to be outstanding in every way.

(Full disclosure: Kia had a Sportage SX dropped off at my apartment with a full tank of gas for me do use for a week. This was last year, before I was dealing with some medical issues, so thatís why itís a 2018. Still, enjoy.)
Most modern Kia reviews are obligated to start with something like ďKias are way better than they were 20 years ago.Ē And yeahĖmodern Kias are a far cry from the stapled-together soap box cars of the í90s that seemed predestined to end up as pizza delivery beaters.
That said, the original Sportage is the only early American-market Kia I have to admit I kind of miss.

Looking at this adorable trucklet up top, you might be tempted to call the OG Sportage a straight knockoff of the Toyota RAV4 or Honda CR-V. But it was actually developed at the same time, with Mazda and Ford, because while ďcrossoversĒ hadnít really been invented yet, compact SUVs were just getting popular.
Today, all small car-based SUVs are pretty much classified as ďcrossoversĒ and none of them are half-convertibles. But the Sportage SX still feels pretty breezy inside, at least if you order the optional panoramic sunroof. With that big skylight slid all the way open, you get a lot of the pleasures of drop top driving without any of the wind. Which is kind of nice.
But while the original Sportage was cutesy, the current fourth generation car that we have now is mature and practical.
Specs That Matter

The Sportage is a relatively trim 176.4 inches long, seats five and has a Kia-claimed 30.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats. If you only need to carry two people, you can drop the back seats and unlock almost double the haulage area. That easily gobbles up small piece of furniture or all your luggage for a long vacation.

You can order all-wheel drive or front-wheel drive, either of which pairs with a six-speed automatic transmission, but the main decision you need to make is between two engines: A 2.4-liter four-cylinder rated at 181 horsepower and 175 lb-ft of torque, which I havenít tested, and the SX Turbo trimís 2.0-liter turbo rated to a significantly stronger 240 HP (237 with AWD) and 260 lb-ft of torque.

(Differences for the 2019 model are negligible, by the way; there is a bigger screen option for the LX package now but thatís about it.)

That extra power makes the engine upgrade pretty appealing, and it doesnít come with much of an efficiency penalty. Kia says the AWD naturally aspirated engine can do 22 mpg in combined driving while the turbo does 21.
Unfortunately, both those figures kind of suck for a car this size. Rivals like the Ford Escape, Toyota RAV4 and Honda CRV all do better in EPA estimates.

And itís not like either engine can blow the cold brew coffee out of your cupholder or haul a massive load, either. The Sportage is only rated tow a maximum of 2,000 pounds or carry about 1,000 inside it.

As for performanceĖitís fine.

Meanwhile, if youíre thirsty for more specific details, check out the full spec sheet straight from Kia.
Beautiful Simplicity

My favorite thing about the Kia Sportage was how welcoming its interface is. Iím in and out of new and old cars constantly, and thereís a lot of variance to the pitch of their learning curves.

A í90s Honda is completely self-explanatory. A new Volvo requires a tutorial class. BMWs and Benzes make you work for it. A new Kia, or Hyundai for that matter, has a whole lot of the fancy tech that makes a new car intriguing, while still being as easy and intuitive as a car you grew up with.
A blind spot warning system, lane departure and autonomous emergency braking are part of the SX trimís stock package and they all seemed to work as advertised. I must confess, I didnít test the parking assist system. If you canít park a 180-inch car on your own, you should maybe think about sticking to the bus.

Beyond the driver aid suite, my test car was only accessorized with some leather trim and cargo netting, which I really liked. Your days of having loose apples rolling from side to side every time you take a turn are over! Look how organized you could have your groceries back there:

Back in the front seat, everything youíd need quickly is available with a hard key. The infotainment software does exactly what you think it should, and I never felt frustration in a week of working with it. This is a vehicle built for the purpose of practicality. If you want to take advantage of a new carís suite of toys but donít want to have to think about how to use them, youíre going to feel good in the cockpit of this Kia.

Practically Sized

The Sportage drives small but doesnít feel claustrophobic in the cab. Four adults can occupy its seats in comfort, and a weekendís luggage for everybody would easily disappear in the cargo hatch.

Meanwhile, in the dozens of parallel parking jobs I had to do with this car, the Sportage seemed like it could pretty much sneak into even the lean scraps of street parking, which is hugely helpful for city living.
And yes, the slightly elevated ride height everyoneís always citing as a big appeal of crossovers does make navigating traffic a little less stressful. And I will admit that this is easier to get in and out of than a similarly-sized sedan.
Gaze Upon Heaven And Move Upmarket

Panoramic sunroofs have been around for a long time, and have worked their way into pretty much everything from sports cars to pickup trucks. But some are still better than others, and my goodness, the optional immense invisible roof is really quite spectacular.

Itís barely interrupted by one thin crossbar, and the way the roof curves makes it seem even larger than it is. And it pretty much occupies the entire ceiling from just ahead of the driverís hair to right on top of where the rear passengers sit.

The roof takes forever to open because itís so freaking large, which is the Sportageís one opportunity for designed drama and itís delightful. If you buy a Sportage and want to skip the roof, I beg you to reconsider. It takes early morning and twilight drives to a new level of nice.
On The Road


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Unread 2019-01-10, 09:50 PM   #28
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Driving the turbocharged Sportage SX is generally effortless, if unremarkable. Acceleration and braking are more than adequate for normal driving at and around the speed limit. Thereís enough juice in reserve to make passes, usually, and the steering is sufficiently responsive.

Thereís not a lot of excitement to unleash if you hold the gas pedal to the floor, but I canít imagine many people looking to buy one of these will care. Noise, vibration and harshness are all pretty well ironed out, which anyone could appreciate.
Itís probably not a good idea to talk about the non-turbo version without driving it, but based on my impressions of this SX I think itís safe to assume the Sportage thatís down about 60 ponies would be much more lethargic.
The Sportage is a pleasant pod to shuttle yourself around in, and it responds well enough to inputs to be satisfying in commuter driving. Itís just too bad that it wants to drink so much fuel while going about its business.
Quiet And Comfortable

The SX trim I tested had a cool two-tone decorative dressing going on on the seats which I really liked. That seat, by the way, was a really nice place to park my butt

Between the Sportageís solid visibility, smooth ride and supportive seat I felt like I could cannonball across America in this vehicle easily. That should mean running to your kidís school, the grocery store, and occasionally grandmaís house upstate in one of these would be pretty painless.


The 2018 Sportage doesnít really have a sense of humor or any hidden talents, but itís a friendly daily driver thatís just the right size and never frustrating to be stuck in.

That panoramic sunroof I gushed over is cool enough to elevate the experience of owning one a lot, and really does make the interior beautiful with natural light as long as you donít open it at high noon.

Unfortunately, the Sportageís weak fuel economy really puts it at a disadvantage against the all-wheel drive 2.4-liter Honda CR-V (which gets a superior 27 mpg in combined driving). The Toyota RAV4 and Mazda CX-5 also get around on less gas.

But I will say the Sportage SX felt damn decent inside, and its no-nonsense interface is really appealing.

2018 Sportage SX AWD


Sunroof, easy interface


Fuel economy


$34,400 and up; $36,125 as tested


237 HP ē 260 LB-FT


3,765 LBS


A friendly and practical crossover that would be perfect if it weren't so thirsty

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