With compact crossover SUVs being all the rage, it's an opportune time for Kia to be rolling out an all-new Sportage for the 2017 model year. The fourth-generation model of Kia's longest-running nameplate will start at a competitive $22,900 before destination costs for a base LX model with front-wheel drive, which stacks up competitively against the $23,100 Ford Escape, $23,745 Honda CR-V and $24,350 Toyota RAV4.
The Sportage's standard features list includes 17-inch aluminum wheels, LED daytime running lights, 5-inch touchscreen infotainment display, rearview camera, Bluetooth, keyless entry and a Drive Mode Select system that offers Normal, Eco and Sport drive modes. A 2.4-liter direct-injection four-cylinder engine with 181 horsepower paired with a six-speed automatic transmission provides power.
For more features, shoppers can opt for a $1,100 LX popular package that adds heated front seats, heated outside mirrors, roof rails, 10-way power driver seat with power lumbar support and Yes Essentials stain-resistant interior fabric. A $900 LX Cool and Connected package brings dual-zone climate controls and a new UVO 7.0-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities.
Upgrading to the Sportage EX model uses the LX Cool and Connected package as a basis, and adds 18-inch wheels, fog lights, leather and push-button start. An optional EX premium package brings a panoramic sunroof, heated steering wheel, auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink, LED interior lighting, blind-spot monitoring with lane change assistance and rear cross-traffic alert for $1,900.
Even more equipment is available with the $2,700 EX technology package that includes the UVO 8-inch touchscreen, navigation, 320-watt Harman Kardon sound system, front and rear parking assist, smart power liftgate, lane departure warning, high-beam assist, front collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, cooled front seats and eight-way power passenger seat.
Sitting atop the Sportage lineup is the performance-focused SX Turbo model with a 240-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Building on the EX technology package, the SX also gets larger front brakes, sport-tuned suspension, 19-inch wheels, dual exhaust pipes, front and rear skid plates, specific grille design, xenon headlights with dynamic bending light, quad-LED "Ice Cube" fog lights and LED taillights. On the inside, gloss black trim, a thicker rim steering wheel, paddle shifters, metal pedals, metal scuff plates and dashboard accent stitching are special to the SX.
All Sportage models will be available with a Magna all-wheel-drive system for an additional $1,500 that includes a 50-50 locking center differential, and torque vectoring capabilities when it goes sales at Kia dealers this spring.