New Kia Sportage 2023: impressions while driving

New Kia Sportage 2023: impressions while driving

The 2023 Kia Sportage arrived in the domestic market with the fifth generation of the Korean medium SUV, which arrives from Europe with a hybrid drive and with a price starting at R$ 224,990.

As already known, the SUV arrives in its European variant, which is smaller than the one in South Korea, maintaining the same size as the previous generation.

With a more efficient proposition in use and delivery, the New Sportage adds a very different look to previous generations, drawing attention to the mix in a very different way.

Apart from the looks, the New Sportage uses a new platform designed to be electrified and that means adding a lithium battery and an electric drive instead of a conventional alternator.

With a system that works on 48 volts, more regenerative brakes and electronic management, the New Sportage took the MHEV kit.

In this small hybrid with the Smartstream-G 1.6 T-GDi engine, power reaches 180 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 27 kgfm at 1,500 rpm.

With a two-speed dual-clutch transmission and front-wheel drive, the New Sportage consumes 11.5 km/l in the city and 12.1 km/l on the highway.

Starting with technology like the ADAS+ package, the Sportage added a 12.3-inch dual-screen infotainment cluster, following the recent trend.

Adding a new steering wheel, more comfortable seats and a decent interior space, the Kia SUV is 562 liters.

Highly finished in the EX Prestige version, the New Sportage has from full LED lights to the sunroof, including ventilated seats, dual-zone climate control, several USB-C inputs and driving modes, which attract attention.

With a forecast of 250 units per month, the New Sportage will face a further price increase when lots arrive from Europe, due to the exchange rate difference.

Kia Sportage 2023 – Visual impressions

The New Sportage impresses with the details presented, and the front has diamond-shaped headlights, as well as boomerang daytime running lights. Metallic details on the grille, along with the fog lights, and the entire LED set on the EX Prestige.

The sides have smooth surfaces, with mirrors placed on the doors, curves that indicate the C-pillars and roof bars in gloss black, connecting the sunroof.

At the back, LED lights with a water pattern leave the impression of a pleasant set, while the lid was cleaner with a hole with an inset wiper, placed near the ceiling, under the air deflector.

The bumper, on the other hand, does not include the exhaust outlets on the edge, and the curved pipe under the protection of the bodywork.

Inside, the New Sportage has a modern look, with a configurable cluster with three instrument styles, new Eco, Normal and Sport modes, as well as circular camera images when the turn signals are activated.

There is also an indication of battery power recovery, among other functions, while the steering wheel has a new layout and multifunctional controls.

The console in glossy black with a rotary knob has a P exchange position, as well as buttons for heating and ventilation, including the steering wheel, and the parking brake and lights on the left side of the panel, it is part of the set.

Seats in two materials with different leather and fabric, with electric adjustment.

The surrounds feature LED daytime running lights, while the rear uses adjustable rear spoilers and air diffusers in the center of the set.

The luggage compartment has a direct cover with sensors and lights, as well as a spare tire and phone cover.

Kia Sportage 2023 – Performance while driving

The New Sportage was tested during a trip between Araxá-MG and Franca-SP, where we were able to experience the Kia SUV, which basically has a good driving style, and a utility-oriented modification.

The four-cylinder engine has a turbocharger and direct fuel injection, but despite the two-speed dual-clutch transmission, it is more reminiscent of a CVT.

This is not a flaw, as the focus of the proposal is energy efficiency and even the transmission is not the same as used in Kia cars with 1.6 T-GDi with DCT, but without hybrid features.

In Eco and Normal mode, this feeling is even greater, however, in Sport Mode, the electrics are in the background for a set that is actually more similar to the characteristics of the power train.

From a good run in the city, Kia Sportage 2023 even turns off the engine on deceleration, indicated by a standard tachometer, but the transition is smooth and silent, it does not show changes.

In the city, the spin stays at 1,500 rpm and with a good speed of recovery, with enough power to climb without much effort, although sometimes, the pointer continues to 3,000 rpm, it reminds us of aspirated and CVT.

Already on the road, Kia Sportage 2023 has a pleasant car, and the revs rise well in passing Eco and Normal modes, in this minus, but in Sport mode, this comes with additional performance.

Using the paddle shift feature, even better performance is ensured, by raising revs up to 5,500 rpm.

With a light and responsive electric drive, the New Sportage is a pleasure to drive on the road, where it reaches 2,000 rpm at 110 km / h.

The soft suspension, on the other hand, suffered from endless splits on the road section of Minas Gerais, even more so with potholes and slopes, while the 19-inch wheels supported the extra effort.

In this environment, the most surprising thing is the lane departure and lane departure assistant, which keeps the car on the lane, using the normal or independent cruise control.

It was the first time we saw that it placed the car in the center with a great body vibration due to undulations and pieces of asphalt, which usually change the speed and stability of the car.

In this case, the system made continuous steering movements, keeping the car on the line, even if the adjustments caused the body to vibrate.

The latter is perhaps a point of concern for those who go to the back seat, but for safety, it kept the car even in these curves and road defects.

On good roads, the system works like no other, keeping the ride smooth and safe.

Another explanation is that the controller’s alert time is at least twice that of other systems, reaching almost one minute.

This gives an idea of ​​how cars with automatic levels 3 and 4 will perform in extreme driving conditions.

With decent brakes, good stability, and features like blind monitoring and group shots, the 2023 Kia Sportage turned out to be a very good car in our test.

More specific day-to-day information, including usage, only in NA Assessment, if possible.

Kia Sportage 2023 – Photo gallery