2017 Kia Sportage
The all-new 2017 Kia Sportage is a personality-filled compact crossover utility (CUV) with lots to like. While its design should be familiar to Kia fans with a prominent “tiger nose” grille right up front, the Sportage has grown a bit compared with its predecessor and therefore offers more interior and cargo room than before, a big plus in this segment.
On the technology front, Kia has pulled out all the stops with its new optional active driving assist systems and its UVO3 touchscreen infotainment and emergency telematics system, which works well here, especially on the top-of-the-line SX Turbo model’s smooth 8-inch capacitive touchscreen. UVO3 includes Android Auto 5 and Apple CarPlay technologies for enhanced smartphone pairing, plus 14 telematics services, navigation and a host of other useful features.
Two Engine Choices Plus AWD
For SX and EX models, a 181 horsepower and 175 lb-ft-torque naturally aspirated 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine turns in admirable performance and improved fuel efficiency when compared with the outgoing 2016 model. The SX Turbo uses a unique 2.0-liter GDI direct-injection turbocharged and intercooled four-cylinder engine outputting a thrilling 240 horsepower and 260 lb-ft. of torque.
All-wheel drive models feature Kia’s Magna Dynamax Intelligent AWD tech with a 50/50 locking center differential and the ability to split torque dynamically in response to changing traction needs. Here is a slick system that performs well in rain and snow without compromising fuel efficiency too much due to its ability to send torque only to the front wheels when four-wheel traction is not needed.
A Larger, Improved Interior
Legroom increases both front and rear in the new 2017 Sportage thanks to an overall 1.6-inch in length over last year’s model. The spacious five-passenger interior features available leather seating surfaces plus a heated leather steering wheel, heated seats and soft-touch materials for the dash and door panels. Even the base LX comes with a 5-inch touchscreen system with Bluetooth, but to get the new UVO3, which makes its debut on the 2017 Kia Sportage, you will need to upgrade to the EX or higher. This intuitive new touchscreen infotainment system harnesses the power of both Apple and Android phones for a wide variety of useful services including Pandora internet radio. The SX Turbo model comes with the most powerful version of UVO3, running on a larger screen and incorporating a navigation system.
With a full 30.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second-row seat, you will not need to fold down the seat for a couple weeks worth of groceries. From its well-designed cargo hold with power rear liftgate to its cupholders and cubbies in all the most useful places, the 2017 Sportage has been designed from the ground up for families on the go. The result is an interior that is a nice place to spend some time, especially at the higher trim levels with their fancy tech features.
Advanced Safety Tech
A number of advanced safety technologies make their debut on the new Sportage. Kia’s Forward Collision Warning System and Autonomous Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection work together to bring the car to a full stop to avoid a collision the driver may have otherwise fallen into. A Lane Departure Warning System helps the driver stay in their lane by making an audible alert if the car begins to change lanes without resorting to the turn signal. Also featured are Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist, and a Rear Cross-Traffic Alert system. A backup camera is available.
With two great powertrain choices, a larger and revamped interior, good ride quality and so much tech available, the 2017 Kia Sportage is a well-rounded compact crossover. Kia targets a five-star government safety rating and Top Safety Pick Plus status from the IIHS.