So this is Kia’s brave new world: new heights on perceived quality, material richness and fit and finish, it says. They’re not exactly dizzy heights, although the overall ambience of the Sportage’s cabin is pleasant enough.
Our impressions were grounded somewhat by our test car’s KX-2 trim level, which misses out on the leather upholstery, contrast stitching and high-gloss trim of ritzier models. On the equipment front, there are seven levels to choose from: 1, 2/KX-2, 3/KX-3, 4/KX-4, KX-5, GT-Line and GT-Line S.
The entry-level Sportage comes equipped with 16in alloys, front foglights, hill start assist and descent control as standard, while inside there is air conditioning, USB and Bluetooth connectivity, DAB radio and cruise control.
Upgrade to the trim adorning our test car and you will find 17in alloys, roof rails, rear parking sensors, automatic wipers and lights, and Kia's safety systems, while inside there is dual-zone climate control, a reversing camera and Kia's 7.0in touchscreen infotainment system complete with sat nav and smartphone integration.
Sportage's kitted out in '3/KX-3' equipment gain luxuries such as an 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system, a panoramic sunroof and a eight speaker JBL audio system, while paying a bit more simply adds ventilated seats, heated steering wheel, electrically adjustable front seats, front parking sensors, adaptive bi-xenon headlights, and keyless entry and start, along with Kia's autonomous braking system and blind spot detection system.