As Kia’s longest running nameplate which pioneered its segment, the Sportage undergoes its most significant change to date as the fifth generation is unveiled. Developed as part of Kia’s new global brand transformation, “Movement that Inspires,” the all-new 2023 Sportage subcompact SUV delivers more of everything for today’s savvy, adventurous and eco-conscious consumers.
Exuding the brand’s new “Opposites United” design philosophy, the new Sportage is a welcome addition in a sea of bland-looking subcompact SUVs that crowd today’s market. Significantly larger, more capable and powerful, and targeted to be more fuel efficient, the fifth-generation model debuts a number of Sportage firsts including an available dual panoramic curved digital display and an exciting new variant that will literally take consumers to new heights. Most Sportage trims will now be assembled in the U.S., alongside the award-winning Telluride, Sorento, and K5 at Kia’s manufacturing plant in West Point, Georgia.
“While Kia moves purposefully toward electrification, we are further strengthening the Sportage lineup by adding a variety of options suited for all different kinds of customers,” said Sean Yoon, president and CEO, Kia America, Kia North America. “The tremendous success formula of our current stable of SUVs has been infused into every ounce of the new Sportage, transforming it into a leader of the pack with its cutting-edge design, adventurous capability and desirable in-car technology.”
The Sportage delivers something for everyone, with a diverse lineup and trim levels that include the LX, EX, SX, SX-Prestige and X-Line, while the all-new Sportage X-Pro and X-Pro Prestige trims allow drivers to venture further into nature with off-road ready features including all-terrain tires, among other elements.
With several enticing variants to come, the 2023 Sportage will help build Kia’s reputation in electrification, while also strengthening the brand’s commitment to building rugged and capable SUVs. Following in the footsteps of the Sorento, the Sportage will also be available in a hybrid version. Details on that and other powertrains will be revealed at a later date, while gasoline variants are anticipated to go on sale in the U.S. in the first quarter of 2022.
A Balancing Act in Design
Bearing all the elements of Kia’s new “Opposites United” design philosophy, Sportage’s distinctive appearance leaves a lasting impression with its contrasting but unified elements. Smooth, soft surfaces are offset by rugged, sheer forms, combining off-road confidence with cutting edge modern cues. It’s sleek and ready for anything.
- Tiger nose grille gets more technical with floating design, perched above blacked out grille graphic that spans the entire width of the front fascia
- Distinct “boomerang” daytime running lights immediately draw the eye with dramatic angles, which push the uniquely shaped headlights to the outer corners
- Angular fenders lend Sportage a sharp and strong presence
- Crisp shoulder line rises from the hood and runs down the side, adding more volume to overall shape
- Muscular shoulders around the rear flow into futuristic “notch-shaped” taillights, which are seamlessly connected by a thin black graphic across the tailgate
A Living Space Both Comfortable and Connected
Inspired by high-end outdoor products, furniture, and modern architecture, the Sportage’s interior is a new concept for Kia, transforming the cabin into a pleasant living space, complete with near-luxury, thoughtful features:
- Futuristic driver cockpit with available dual panoramic curved display5 seamlessly connects two screens for nearly 25-inches of digital bliss (12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, 12.3-inch infotainment screen)
- Angular air vents hug the curved display for a simple and technical overall dash layout
- Asymmetrical console puts controls and buttons at driver’s hand with ease, while also boasting smart storage solutions, including cup holders that come undone when they need to hold something other than a cup (think tablet, etc.)
- Real stitching and detailed pattern on the seats create a feeling of luxury (SX and above), along with animal-free leather (EX and above)
- Innovative coat hanger molded behind front headrests, with useable seatbacks that also house USB ports and an integrated hook for shopping bags or for organizing charging cables6
To further distinguish itself from the hot-selling Seltos and more clearly define its space in Kia’s robust SUV lineup, the Sportage has gone from one of the smallest SUVs in its class to one of the largest. With best-in-class rear legroom7, rear passengers are greeted with a more relaxing space where they can feel good about kicking back.
- Overall length is 7.1 inches longer than previous generation, with a 3.4-inch longer wheelbase
- Taller and wider by a half inch compared to the previous generation
- Class-leading rear legroom with 41.3 inches of room7
- Best-in-class rear cargo capacity with 39.6 cu-ft. of space
- Dual level cargo floor
To match the high-tech interior, the Sportage abounds with standard and available infotainment to keep drivers connected, confident, and informed of what’s going on around them.
- Standard Android Auto8 and Apple CarPlay9 on all trims
- Intuitive new touchpad with climate and audio controls sits beneath infotainment screen; switching between functions changes what physical knobs do, whether it’s controlling temperature or adjusting the volume
- Available 360-degree Surround-View Monitor with 3D view provides a bird’s-eye view of vehicle surroundings10
- Available Harman Kardon11 premium audio system
- Multi-connection Bluetooth12 simultaneously links two smartphones
- Personalized profile that can be set up to remember climate and infotainment preferences, phone connection pairings, etc.
- Available wireless charging13 pad built inside the upper tray
- Available Kia Connect14 services provide advanced embedded connectivity to take the customer experience to an all-new level:
- A Sportage first, the Wi-Fi Hotspot15 connects up to five devices to 4G LTE-based internet
- Includes over the air map updates for eligible vehicles
- Refreshed Kia Access App with newly added compatibility through Apple- and Android-based smartwatches to access features like remote climate control, door lock/unlock and more16
- Peace of mind with the recently introduced stolen vehicle tracking and immobilization capability
- Connected Routing: Cloud-based system calculates the optimal route using real-time maps and predicted traffic info based on historical information and AI to learn the preferred routes of users
- Smart Speaker Integration lets customers use Amazon Alexa17 or Google Assistant18 enabled smart speakers or devices to remotely control some functions (such as remote start16)
Underpinned by the same all-new 3rd generation “N3” platform found in the Sorento, the chassis provides a rigid base and aims to offer:
- Better driving dynamics via expanded use of hot-stamped parts and ultra-high-strength steel for increased average tensile strength and torsional stiffness
- Minimized road, wind, and engine noise via greater application of sound absorbing and insulating materials
A Diverse Engine Lineup
Whether you’re an urban adventurer or an off-pavement explorer, there’s a Sportage for you.
- New 2.5-liter I-4 is more powerful and targeted to be more fuel efficient than outgoing engine
- Paired with new 8-speed automatic transmission
- Targeted 187 horsepower
- FWD or available AWD (AWD-equipped models gain 1.5 inches in ground clearance over outgoing Sportage)
- The available Active AWD system3 uses electro-hydraulic coupling with center-locking differential to actively distribute power between front and rear wheels depending on road and driving conditions.
- Information regarding additional powertrain availability will be shared at a later date.
Sportage All-Wheel Drive X-Line and X-Pro
In developing a reputation for building rugged and capable SUVs, Sportage is available in the X-Line and all-new Sportage X-Pro trims. Both come standard with AWD and a unique tread-like stitching pattern on unique and easy to clean SynTex synthetic leather seats.
Sportage X-Line blends sporty and rugged looking exterior features:
- Unique front and rear bumpers with a satin chrome surround create a tougher image, complemented by side garnish
- Side mirrors, roof rack and window surrounds finished in gloss black for a sportier look
- Raised roof rack rails to support adventure ready accessories
- Exclusive 19-inch wheels
Sportage X-Pro has off-road hardware to match its design elements, so it doesn’t just look like a trail-ready vehicle – it is.
- B.F. Goodrich19 all-terrain tires
- 17-inch matte black off-road wheels
- LED fog lights and available LED Projector headlights (standard on X-Pro Prestige) to illuminate the trail ahead if your adventure takes you into the night
- Heated windshield and wiper washer nozzle
- Multi-terrain drive modes with Normal, Sport, Smart, and Snow modes
- Available two-tone roof
- Ventilated front seats (X-Pro Prestige)
- 8-way power front passenger seat (X-Pro Prestige)
Inspiring Driver Confidence with Advanced Driver Assistance
There’s no shortage of standard Advanced Driver Assistance Systems.20 Even at the base LX level, drivers will appreciate the convenience of having some of Kia’s most technologically advanced systems.
- Driver Attention Warning (DAW)21: Analyzes the driver’s attention level and provides a warning if a break is recommended. It may also provide a leading vehicle departure alert, if the leading vehicle departs from a stop and the driver does not react within a certain time period.
- LED Headlights with High Beam Assist (HBA): Engineered to automatically dim the headlights when an oncoming or leading vehicle is detected, then return to high beams when vehicles are no longer detected
- Lane Following Assist (LFA): Helps detect lane markings and vehicles ahead and provides steering inputs to help center the vehicle in the lane
- Lane Keeping Assist (LKA): Helps detect lane markings and provides steering inputs to help prevent the vehicle from leaving the lane while driving
- Forward Collision Avoidance (FCA) with Cyclist detection capability: Warns if there is risk of a collision with a vehicle, pedestrian, or cyclist in front of the vehicle while driving and may automatically assist with braking
- Rear Occupant Alert (ROA)22: Provides a warning to the driver to check the rear seat before exiting the vehicle
- Rear View Monitor (RVM) with Dynamic Parking Guidance: Provides view of behind the vehicle, with guidelines that adjust to follow the direction the vehicle is turning
- Reverse Parking Distance Warning (PDW-R): Detects certain objects behind the vehicle, issuing an audible warning when an obstruction is detected. The warning tone chimes faster as the vehicle gets closer to the detected object
Optional Advanced Driver Assistance Systems:
- Blind-Spot View Monitor (BVM)23: Projects live video view of adjacent lanes in the instrument cluster when activated via the turn signal
- Blind Spot Collision Avoidance-Assist (BCA): May help avoid a collision with rear-side vehicles when changing lanes
- Blind Spot Collision Avoidance (BCA) with Parallel Exit: May help avoid collisions with rear-side vehicles when exiting parallel parking spot by automatically assisting with braking
- Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance-Assist (RCCA): Helps detect approaching cross traffic when in reverse. When approaching cross traffic is detected, the system alerts the driver and may apply brakes
- Forward Collision Avoidance (FCA) with Junction Turning capability: Helps avoid collisions with an oncoming vehicle while turning left at an intersection
- Forward Parking Distance Warning (PDW-F): Detects certain objects in front of the vehicle, issuing an audible warning when an obstruction is detected. The warning tone chimes faster as the vehicle gets closer to the detected object
- Highway Driving Assist (HDA)24: Uses federal highway speed limit information from the navigation system and, under certain conditions, will automatically adjust speed to be within the posted speed limit and maintain distance with the vehicle detected in front and helps center the vehicle in the lane
- Intelligent Speed Limit Assist (ISLA): Uses speed limit information detected through the front camera or GPS navigation information (when activated) and issues warning if the speed is over the speed limit
- Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control-Curve (NSCC-C): Leverages the navigation system to help lower the vehicle’s speed proactively before upcoming curves
- Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control-Zone (NSCC-Z): Leverages the navigation system to help lower the vehicle’s speed proactively before upcoming changes in speed limits
- Reverse Parking Collision Avoidance (PCA-R): May help avoid collisions with rear pedestrians or objects detected during reverse parking, potentially automatically assisting with emergency braking if the risk of a collision increases after warning
- Safe Exit Warning (SEW)25: Provides a warning when a vehicle is approaching from the rear-side while someone is exiting the vehicle
- Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with Stop and Go: Helps maintain distance from the vehicle ahead and drive at a speed set by the driver, including in certain stop-and-go driving conditions