Kia’s Sportage has been around as a model name for nearly twenty years. Recently restyled with an atomic egg appearance, the compact crossover continues its missive of providing a tall-riding crossover for families who don’t yet want (or need) to move into a three-row rig.
In the LX t, there is a 2.4-liter four banger under the hood, cranking out 181 horsepower. A turbocharger doesn’t appear until the SX Turbo trim, which checks in at a ten grand premium. On the base car, all-wheel drive is an option.A six-speed automatic is the only transmission.
The entry level LX certainly doesn’t look like the cheap model, unlike with some brands that bin LED lights and color-keyed door handles on base cars. Kia includes both those exterior styling features, along with a rear quasi-spoiler and projector beam headlights. Those wheels are 17-inch alloys, not steelies with hubcaps.
Infotainment is handled by an 8-inch touchscreen interface rather than a festival of buttons that resemble a group of angry Klingons, an approach once taken by other makes (ahem, Ford) when trying to save pennies in their least expensive trims. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are presented and accounted for. An array of driving nannies like lane keeping and forward collision assist are also standard on the LX.
As expected on a value-laden Kia, one-touch auto-down power down windows are standard, along with a steering wheel that adjusts for reach and rake. A/C? Of course. Those cloth seats are manually adjusted, though. Hyper Red paint, shown here, is a no charge option, one of seven total colors available.