2017 Kia Sportage GT-Line Review

Kia Sportage Road Test, Review

The 2017 Kia Sportage is a nicely-sized and competitively-priced small SUV that also looks good and is easy to live with.

That’s pretty much going to be the message from this Kia Sportage review.

One of the stars of the ‘new’ Kia that is winning over record numbers of Australian car buyers, the Sportage is a vehicle that can serve across a range of applications - from young singles to families and ’empty-nesters’.

Why? Because it really is just the right size.

Interior space, especially in the rear, is excellent, yet it isn’t a difficult vehicle to maneuver around the city.

My week with the Kia Sportage included a drive up to the Hunter Valley from Sydney and I was just as impressed with the vehicle at 110km/h on the M1 motorway.

The only thing missing was adaptive cruise control - this is a feature that you really miss when you become familiar with the tech.

What is adaptive cruise? Its the system that allows the vehicle to remain under the control of the cruise control system when you get a slower driver in front.

Without it you’re constantly switching the cruise on and off and that’s actually pretty distracting and annoying.

It is also an odd exclusion from this top-spec GT-Line grade model as the vehicle is fitted with a radar system for the autonomous emergency braking (a system that automatically applies the brakes if it senses an imminent collision).

Another omission, and a common one for Kia - digital radio.

Conversely, connectivity is covered by Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The GT-Line Sportage is available with a choice of 2.0 litre turbo-diesel or 2.4 litre petrol.

AWD and a six-speed auto transmission come as standard across both.

I sampled the petrol engine version and was not disappointed - 135kW in a small SUV is a good number and the 237Nm of torque helped the Sportage easily chew up the Ourimbah hill at 110km/h on the return trip.

Aside from the excellent interior space, Kia‘s engineers deserve a pat on the back for the quietness of the cabin.

The Kia Sportage is extremely quiet, even at speed on the highway.

The ride too, even on the GT-Line’s 45 series tyres was excellent.

Inside the cabin, Sportage GT-Line highlights include:

  • Flat-bottom steering wheel
  • Easy to read gauges and driver info screen
  • Well-placed console cupholders
  • Decent storage space
  • Great fit and finish

While visibility from the driver’s seat is generally very good, the large wing-mirrors are a nice assistant too, however rear 3/4 visibility is only marginal due to quite chunky C pillars.

Summing it up: The Kia Sportage is one of the great all-rounders on the market today - small where it matters, large enough where it needs to be, sort of sporty, a bit capable off-road, sedate but different too.

The only thing better, especially if you do a lot of highway kilometres, could be the 400Nm diesel.

Fair pricing, great warranty, and top safety score are the icing on the cake.

NUTS and BOLTS - 2017 Kia Sportage GT-Line

  • Engine: 2.0 litre turbo-diesel producing 136kW/400Nm or 2.4 litre petrol producing 135kW/237Nm
  • Transmission: Six-speed auto
  • Safety: Five stars
  • Warranty: Seven years
  • Origin: South Korea
  • Price: from $43,490 (petrol) and $45,990 (diesel)

1 Comment

  1. I am looking at buying a small SUV, and the Sportage GT line is high on the list. My main reason for a small SUV is to sit higher, which makes getting in/out easier for us oldies. The other reason is to update to the ‘latest’ safety features. While the Sportage has most of these required features, it is still missing the adaptive cruise control, which I want. The turn off/on, adjust speed settings of the very old technology cruise control is annoying, when there is a technology to avoid this. I hope Kia update the Sportage later this year to include adaptive cruise control. As this car has a 7 year warranty…it is very had to pass over. My other choice is the yet to be released Ti Qashqai…though, with only a 3 year warranty, the four year difference may have a cost penalty, as these cars have lots of electronics and computers no doubt to require some expensive maintenance.

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