New Kia Sportage Unveiled; Is It India Bound?
Kia has taken wraps off the fifth-gen Sportage SUV. It not only gets an all-new aesthetics but also features new underpinnings, new features and a host of passive and active safety tech.
Following Kia’s new Opposite United design theme, the new Sportage gets a polarising design. Upfront, it gets a huge full-width grille that is flanked by diamond-shaped Matrix LED headlamps complemented by boomerang-shaped LED DRLs. The front bumper is also completely redesigned with a huge air dam and slim fog lamps.
Coming to the side, the profile looks muscular with flared wheel arches housing alloys with sizes ranging from 17-to 19-inches. It also gets a sloping roofline. At the back, it gets Stinger-like connected tail lamps and a huge dual-tone bumper with a blacked-out lower half housing a faux skid plate and rear reflectors.
On the inside, the new Sportage ditches the conventional setup in favour of a more modern one. It now gets a curved display covering more than half of the dashboard. It incorporates two 12-inch screens both for the instrument cluster and the infotainment system. This screen is flanked by vertically stacked AC vents which further extend below the big screen and to the co-passenger side of the dashboard. Controls for the AC are positioned below the central AC vents while buttons for other functions are placed on the central floor console which also houses the shift-by-wire transmission dial, in case of automatic variants.
The new Sportage is equipped with Kia’s in-house developed Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) technology. It gets Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Highway Driving Assist (HDA), Navigation-based Cruise Control (NSCC), Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA) system and Blind-Spot View Monitor (BVM). It is also equipped with Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA) helps the driver to remotely park or exit a parking spot from outside the vehicle.
Under the hood, the new Sportage gets both petrol and diesel engine options. The petrol engine on offer is a 1.6-litre turbo unit making 180PS and 264Nm which is paired with either a 6-speed MT or a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic. The diesel engine, on the other hand, is a 2.0-litre making 186PS and 416Nm mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The new Sportage is also equipped with an electronic 4WD system that makes sure power is optimally distributed between the front and rear wheels depending on road conditions and driving situations. There are four driving modes on offer Comfort, Eco, Sport and Terrain.
For added comfort and better body control, the Sportage also gets Electric Control Suspension (ECS) with continuous damping control in real-time.
The new Kia Sportage will go on sale in the global markets later this year. However, Kia has no plans of bringing the mid-size SUV to the Indian market. The Sportage is essentially Kia’s take on the Hyundai Tucson which is already on sale in the country. The Tucson takes on the likes of the Jeep Compass, Citroen C5 Aircross and the upcoming SUVs like the Volkswagen Tiguan and Skoda Kodiaq facelift.
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He is an automobile engineer who likes to write. A born Tifosi, he follows Formula 1 and likes to keep up with upcoming technologies in the world of cars.