The fifth-generation model is unlike anything else.
We knew the all-new 2023 Kia Sportage was going to have a bold new look and the South Korean automaker didn't disappoint. The 2023 Sportage boasts a new design language called "Opposites United" that first debuted on the all-electric EV6. Kia says the exterior styling "challenges the norms" and that's a perfect description.
The front end has boomerang-like daytime running lights that extend into the grille while the diamond-shaped headlights add to the upscale look. There's also Kia's newly design logo located at the edge of the hood. The Tiger Nose grille has a more evolved appearance and the lower black grille stretches across the entire front face. From the side, the clean and stylish body surfaces blend together very nicely, and, for the first time on a Sportage, there's a floating roof option. This helps to accentuate the C-pillar while the chrome beltline angles upwards into the D-pillar.
Out back, the broad shoulders provide a more muscular look and the taillights are connected by a strip extending the length of the tailgate. Kia says the rear lights were designed to make it look as if they're cutting directly into the body.
Beneath all of this is the somewhat chunky-looking lower bumper, which matches the front end's black grille shade. Overall, we like what we're seeing but it might take some getting used to for more conservative shoppers.
The interior is equally bold in its design approach. The driver-oriented dash features an integrated curved display that houses both the instrument and infotainment units. The air vents have a three-dimensional look and are located directly in the display. Kia hasn't provided screen size dimensions just yet. The center console is finished with a high-end gloss and it contains the gear selector knob and numerous other functions. Speaking of which, there are still actual physical buttons for things like temperature control.
Kia says it utilized a ton of high-end materials that are nice to the touch. Another noteworthy feature is the integrated hanger-type designs within the driver and front passenger slim headrests, which allow for rear seat occupants to hook things like bags and purses into place.
If the new Sportage's design isn't quite aggressive enough for you, there's the new (and first-ever) X-Line trim. It includes things like a unique bumper, side sill, and roof rack. For the inside, signature sage green or black seat colors are offered along with quilting and black metal wood trim.
There's no mention of what's under the hood but given that the Sportage shares a platform with the Hyundai Tucson, expect an identical engine lineup consisting of a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter base engine with 187 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque, paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission with optional all-wheel drive. Turbocharged, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid models are also expected. No pricing details have been released as yet with sales to begin later this year.
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