New Kia Sportage has bold styling and joins the ‘light’ hybrid wave

New Kia Sportage has bold styling and joins the ‘light’ hybrid wave

Made in Slovakia, the SUV is available in two versions and starts at R$224,990

The fifth generation Sportage enters the market at the same time that Grupo Gandini completes 30 years of representation of the South Korean brand in Brazil. The mid-size SUV has very different lines from all other generations and its style is close to the electric EV6. At the front, daytime running lights in an extended “C” shape provide a futuristic look. On the top version of EX Prestige 19″ wheels have a great visual impact, as does the rear row. At the back, the rear lights are connected to the bar and the rear window wiper is closed under the roof deflector, an attractive aesthetic feature .

The new Sportage, imported from Slovakia, has a wheelbase 1 cm (2.68 m) longer than the previous generation, but four cm longer than its main rival, the Compass. It also gets length (4.51 mx 4.40 m) and width (1.86 mx 1.82 m). It ensures a large interior space and trunk volume (562 liters, but without a spare tire). In fact, Jeep has the most advanced off-road capabilities.

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The interior finish is very pleasant with high-quality materials in the Prestige version. The front electric leather seats are lined with suede and there is ventilation and heating. The multifunctional steering wheel is also activated. A rotary knob replaces the shift lever and on the console all the main controls are close at hand. The two integrated 12.3-inch screens impress. (instrument and multimedia panels being this row and facing the driver).

Despite the mobile phone charger, the connection must be wired with two USB ports. Sunroof is panoramic. In the back seat there is a backrest adjustment and two USB ports are located on the sides of the front seats in a more ergonomic position. The middle path is down.

The 2023 Sportage is a “slim” 48V hybrid with a workable electric motor alternator. 1.6 L turbo petrol engine has a combined power and torque of 180 hp and 27 kgf.m. The automatic transmission is seven gears and two clutches. The powertrain enables Sail mode to save fuel.

In short and first evaluation, the throttle response is always quick in any rpm regime. Among the driver assistance systems, there are cameras on the exterior mirrors and images on the instrument panel, staying and keeping in the middle of the road even if the color on the pavement is almost unreadable and automatic emergency braking at intersections.

Price: EX, 224,990 and EX Prestige, 259,990.

Rolls-Royce 1937: the best at the Encontro de Antigos in Araxá (MG)

The Phantom III has a 165 hp V12 engine

The twenty-fourth edition of the Kia Classics Show of Brazil, the country’s highest level event held every two years, in Araxá (MG), brought together around 300 pre-selected models. This year, in addition to the cultural program and photo exhibition, there was a parade of 50 cars through the streets of the city as well as static displays and engaging new lovers of classic racing. Some participants traveled from São Paulo to Araxá on a 600-kilometer journey with models from the 1920s and 1930s. The hybrid auction (in person and online) included 50 lots with bids approaching R$ 1 million.

The top prize, the “Roberto Lee Best of Show Trophy”, went to Antônio Henriques’ Rolls-Royce Phantom III Sedan Cabriolet Deville 1937. Body-built by Freestone and Webb, it has a 7.35 L V-12 engine with 165 hp (estimated). Because of its power and reliability, the engine was used in aircraft in World War II. The Brazilian Classic Car Federation Cup went to Horch Limousine (German for sedan) 951 A 1939, by Rúbio Fernal. This collector also won the “Lalic” trophies for his museum with “Og Pozzoli” and Hispano Suiza of 1927 built by Fiol Barcelona.

The awards for several decades ranged from the 1920s to the 1980s. Among the “newest” imports, the BMW 635 CSI 1984, by Tiago França, won, and the civilian, the VW Passat GTS Pointer 1988, by Fabiano Lobatto. This year the “Roberto Nasser Trophy” was awarded to the best Brazilian sports car: GT Malzoni 1967, by Boris Feldman.

New IPI cut for cars and SUVs

The Federal Government amended the first order to reduce the Import Duty (IPI) which reduced the IPI price reduction for cars and SUVs to 18.5%, effective March 1. It was published in the Official Gazette of July 29 that the reduction is now higher: 24.75%. Still far from the 35% discount that included other industrial products. In March I criticized this flaw and predicted that it would be fixed.

In Brazil, the tax burden will continue to be the heaviest in the world. The ratio between the final price and the duty-free price was around 60% against 9% in the US and 20% in Europe. A very moderate decrease in the IPI level is still welcome as it is definite and not temporary. Ten years ago IPI was set at zero and sales were increasing. When it rose again, the market crashed.

Research by Bright Consulting shows a theoretical decrease in the final price of 0.5% to 1.3%, but it could increase sales between 2% and 2.5% by the end of 2022.


*This text is the opinion of the author and does not necessarily reflect the editorial position of Auto Trade