Kia's Sportage Line-up Redefines Midsize SUV Excellence
On November 8, 2023, Kia South Africa unveiled an updated line-up for its acclaimed Sportage range, building upon the model's success since its local debut in September 2022. The latest Sportage has received praise from customers and critics for its forward-thinking design, premium interior finishes, and extensive standard features, reinforcing Kia's reputation for quality and reliability.
Initially, the Sportage aimed to set the standard in the midsize SUV segment. It embodies Kia's new design language, "Opposites United," with its dynamic and confident road presence and offers customers a cutting-edge interior in the midsize SUV category. This vehicle underscores Kia's consistent first-place ranking in the J.D. Power Initial Quality Study.
Gary Scott, CEO of Kia South Africa, expressed pride in the Sportage's achievements, highlighting its status as a symbol of Kia's pioneering DNA and continuous innovation. The numerous accolades it has received within just over a year reflect its position as the ultimate urban SUV.
In June of the same year, the South African Guild of Mobility Journalists recognised the Sportage as the best mid-size SUV introduced in 2022, earning it a category win in the annual South African Car of the Year competition. Various publications echoed this sentiment, acknowledging Sportage's exceptional value proposition in the market. More recently, Cars.co.za named the Sportage CRDi EX a finalist in their authoritative Consumer Awards. At the same time, Car Magazine declared it the Best Buy in the midsize SUV category of the publication's prestigious Top 12 Best Buy Awards for 2024.
Kia has continually evaluated market trends and customer preferences to provide the best combination of features, benefits, and value for money. In a market where diesel-powered options are dwindling, introducing the 1.6 CRDi powertrain to the Sportage line-up in May addressed the needs of South African customers who appreciate the power delivery and fuel efficiency of a turbodiesel engine.
The 1.6 CRDi diesel engine, paired with Kia's 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, delivers 100 kW of power at 4,000 r/min, with 320 Nm of torque available between 2,000 and 2,250 r/min. It accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 11.4 seconds and has a top speed of 180 km/h, with CO2 emissions rated at 129 g/km in the combined cycle. In the future, the entry-level LX and EX models in the Sportage line-up will exclusively feature the 1.6 CRDi engine.