Kia Australia has confirmed key details for its updated Sportage which sees elevated spec, fresh looks and a nudge to pricing across the rearranged model grade line-up.
This is the first major update for the fourth-generation Sportage since it was launched in January of 2016, with the South Korean medium SUV now locked in for Australia in four model grades: Si, Si Premium, SLi, and GT-Line.
With a significant list of new standard features, pricing has been adjusted starting with the base Si petrol which now checks in at $29,990 plus on-road costs, up $1000 over the outgoing model. Opting for the Si diesel commands a hefty $5400 premium, at $35,390 (up $1400).
While all petrol-powered Sportage models carry over a six-speed automatic transmission, the facelift has ushered in a new eight-speed automatic ‘box for diesel variants.
Similarly, the diesel variants are treated to an all-wheel-drive system as standard, with front-wheel-drive in petrol models in all but the range-topping GT-Line.
The recently-added Si Premium grade gets a handful of convenience and infotainment improvements over the regular Si, and will start at $32,290 for the petrol or $37,690 in diesel guise.
Jumping up to the SLi grade, pricing is now set at $36,790 (petrol) and $42,190 (diesel), representing a price hike of $2800 and $3200, respectively.
Finally, the new GT-Line which replaces the Platinum as the range-topping Sportage variant, will be available at $44,790 for the petrol and $47,690 for the diesel.
In petrol guise, the GT-Line is exclusively treated to a 135kW/237Nm 2.4-litre four-cylinder powertrain.
For all other variants, the engine offerings consist of a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol (with 114kW/192Nm) or a 2.0-litre four-pot turbo-diesel (136kW/400Nm).
The fresh-faced Sportage has had a number of tweaks to styling, for what Kia calls a more refined design, starting with a more angular grille and updated bumpers front-and-rear.
“With the upgraded model it is about refining, not revising, what is already an excellent example of the breed,” said Kia Australia chief operating officer, Damien Meredith.
New headlights and tail-lights also promote a sharper aesthetic and aid in brake light visibility, and a full LED set-up lights the way for the GT-Line range-topper.
The updated SUV sits proud on newly-designed 17-, 18-, or 19-inch hoops, depending on the vehicle’s final spec.
“The Sportage has been very well received since the launch of this generation, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room to add a little more,” Mr Meredith explained.
Inside, the Sportage’s design remains largely unchanged, though the GT-Line will be equipped with black leather-appointed seats, a flat-bottomed leather steering wheel, piano black fascia and aluminium alloy pedals.
Meanwhile, new infotainment systems will feature throughout the range, with the entry-level Si getting a 7.0-inch LCD setup with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto that powers a six-speaker sound system.
The Si Premium, SLi and GT-Line models step things up with a premium eight-speaker JBL sound system with integrated satellite navigation and the same smartphone mirroring tech as the base car.
Keeping in line with the rest of its new models, Kia has added more safety features to the Sportage including lane-keeping assist, auto emergency braking (AEB) and forward collision warning as standard.
This adds to the already comprehensive list of safety tech made available from the car’s launch including ABS, ESC, downhill brake control, hill start assist, rear parking sensors, reversing camera, auto high-beam lights, front seatbelt pre-tensioners and impact sensing auto door unlocking. Every Sportage has six airbags (dual front, front side, full-length curtain).
Kia has promised greater handling and improved steering feel with the new Sportage thanks to a number of recalibrations to the suspension setup.
“With the addition of AEB and Lane Keep Assist across the model range the enhanced Sportage is even safer than before, and the drive has been improved by the addition of the eight-speed gearbox to all diesel models. A revision of the ride and handling package adds a more luxurious ride,” said Mr Meredith.
The base-model Si rolls-off-the-lot with features including an engine immobilizer, remote central locking, a six-way adjustable driver’s seat, cloth trim seats, rain sensing wipers, cruise control, power windows, Bluetooth and 17-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 225/60 R17 tyres.
Stepping up to the Si Premium adds satellite navigation, front parking sensors, LED running lights, DAB+ digital radio, an eight-speaker JBL premium sound system and 18-inch alloys wheels with 225/55 R18 tyres.
The SLi gets tyre pressure monitors, smart key, push button start, leather seats, a 10-way adjustable powered driver’s seat, LED rear combination lamps and an electronic parking brake.
Topping the pack, the new Sportage GT-Line gets a significant boost to spec including blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic alert, an eight-way power front passenger’s seat, park assist, LED fog lights, exclusive bumpers, sills and grille, a panoramic sunroof, flat-bottomed steering wheel gear shift paddles, wireless phone charging, heated and ventilated front seats, a hands-free power tailgate, adaptive cruise control, auto-levelling LED headlights and 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 245/45 R19 rubber.
Australian-market Sportages will be built in Kia’s Gwangju facility in Korea, and like all models in its local line-up, will come with a seven-year warranty with capped-price servicing and roadside assist.