The Sportage 2016 comes styled with a new look and larger body design, but the biggest change is up front. The hallmark ‘tiger-nose’ grille and headlamps have been separated to deliver a striking first impression. The look takes a bit of getting used to but, with its headlamps higher and grille larger and lower, the new design allows greater airflow to aid the cooling system. The side-rear view profile is fantastic - the chrome accentuated trim around the window frames matching with privacy glass really gives off a luxury vibe.
High standard of quality
Interior styling is also keyed as one of the most important advances this year. Taking styling cues from the recently launched Sorento and Carnival, the Sportage boasts high quality and soft-touch materials throughout. With all but the LX variant receiving the leather treatment, there’s a high standard of quality being set. Kia likens the specification of the Sportage EX to its previous top spec model, and the entry level LX stacks up well against some mid-range models of the competition.
Each benefits from a reverse camera, 7-inch colour touch screen, LED indicators, rear parking sensors and a leather steering wheel with audio and cruise control functions.
It’s a sporty look and feel
The new GT-Line model tops the spec charts and offers customers an option with a sportier look and feel. Boasting exclusive features like a panoramic sunroof, quad LED fog lights and dual exhaust tailpipes, it’s a real head turner and a welcome addition to the segment.
The ANZAC safety testing program (combined with the program for Australia) has resulted in changes being made in the steering and handling department for our neck of the woods. I took the petrol GT-Line out and found it a great vehicle to drive - very quiet with great handling characteristics. Its bold grey, two-tone interior really set off the style, but I particularly loved the super-large panoramic sunroof, which let in so much viewing space and created a pleasant, light and relaxing atmosphere, day and night.
Sat Nav is only available if you splash out on one of the top two grades (the GT-Line or the Limited), which also offer electronically adjustable front seats and a smart, hands-free power tailgate which opens the boot when the key fob is close to the rear of the car for three seconds or longer. Tip – don’t wipe down the back, with the key in your pocket.
At a glance
|Model variants||LX, EX, Limited and GT-Line|
|Engine||2.0L, 2.4L petrol, 2.0L diesel|
|Price||$35,990 (LX) - $54,990 (GT-Line)|
|ANCAP safety rating||5 star|
|Power||114 kW, 135kW, 136kW|
|Fuel economy||7.9-8.5 L/100km petrol
6.4-6.8 L/100km diesel
|Towing capacity||750kg all models unbraked 1,600kg 2.0L, 1,500kg 2.4L, 1,900kg 2.0L diesel (braked)|
|2WD/4WD/AWD||2WD - 2.0 petrol model
AWD - 2.4 petrol and 2.0 diesel models
|6 airbags||Blind Spot Detection (excl. LX)|
|Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) (LTD and GT-Line)||Lane Change Assist (excl. LX)|
|Lane Departure Warning (LTD and GT-Line)||Rear Cross Traffic Alert (excl. LX)|
|High Beam Assist (LTD and GT-Line)||Forward Collision Warning (LT and GT-Line)|