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There’s a assemblage of players in the mid-size SUV segment, but alone one with a abounding seven-year branch warranty. That’s this – the Kia Sportage – and we account the AWD SLi agent is the pick
Australians are bedeviled with SUVs, and it’s been that way for a decade or more. There are no signs of any slowdown, either.
So accepted are these aerial riding, space-friendly ancestors chariots, alike die-hard sports car manufacturers like Ferrari, Lamborghini and Aston Martin are accepting into the game. Maserati is already there with its affluence Levante that, as you ability accept guessed, is affairs like hotcakes.
But at the added end of the spectrum is one of the best hotly contested, volume-selling categories on the planet – affordable mid-size SUVs. It’s still the fastest-growing articulation in Australia with amazing bang-for-buck offerings for all kinds of budgets.
There’s a agglomeration of them, 18 altered models and endless variants to accept from at aftermost count, from about all the above carmakers. Models like the Ford Escape, Holden Captiva, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Tucson, Jeep Cherokee, Kia Sportage, Mazda CX-5, Mitsubishi Outlander, Nissan X-Trail, Subaru Forester, Suzuki Grand Vitara and Toyota RAV4.
There are others, too. Fledgling Chinese architect Haval is blame the H6, while Renault sells the Koleos and Volkswagen – the Tiguan. And there are affluence more, too.
Prices alter from as low as $26,490 (plus on-roads) for the Holden Captiva 5 2WD and ascend to $49,990 for the Mazda CX-5 Akera agent and Volkswagen Tiguan 140 TDI Highline.
However, there’s alone one archetypal that offers a abounding seven-year branch assurance – the Kia Sportage, priced amid $28,990 and $45,990. It’s additionally the Korean brand’s second-biggest agent abaft the Cerato, animate about 1000 units anniversary month, accord or take.
Its abutting battling is the high-volume Tucson from sister cast Hyundai, but it alone offers a five-year warranty, and depending on who you allege with, abounding accept the Sportage offers the sweeter administration of the two.
It’s a acute attending all-round, but the rear end is decidedly nice, and arguably added European than the Hyundai, admitting I’m still not absolutely awash on Kia’s latest accumulated face. It’s that bold beam we’re still advancing to agreement with.
Like abounding models in this segment, you can get the Sportage in petrol or diesel, and in two- or four-wheel drive, but the candied atom lies smack-bang in the average with the AWD Kia Sportage SLi agent activated here.
Its 2.0-litre, four-cylinder agent isn’t the best able or the best aesthetic in the class, but with aiguille achievement of 400Nm on tap from aloof 1750rpm, it’s auspiciously acknowledging and pulls adamantine up abrupt slopes. There’s a drive-mode button that offers a few altered settings including Sport, which sharpens burke acknowledgment and works decidedly able-bodied with the diesel.
That said, there’s no camouflage the agent clatter, admitting the berth is absolutely able-bodied cloistral from the agitation authoritative continued trips a adequate affair.
But area the Kia absolutely starts to flash is ride compliance. It doesn’t assume to amount what admeasurement cavern or bang you hit, the Sportage’s locally acquainted abeyance artlessly deals with it for a thoroughly absorptive ride. And it’s no altered over base dent and burst roads, alike benumbed on beyond 18-inch admixture wheels.
Again, we can’t allege too awful of Kia’s bounded abeyance tune, because forth with a adequate ride, the Sportage additionally delivers solid anatomy ascendancy through the bends. There’s actual little anatomy roll, alike if you’re scurrying forth in a bit of a hurry.
Tipping the scales at aloof 1733kg, it’s not the lightest agent in its class, and agent engines are of advance added than petrol engines (Sportage 2.0 petrol archetypal weighs aloof 1599kg), but it does feels added animate than best – aided by an electric power-steering arrangement that offers affluence of feel through the council caster and is accurately weighted. I apperceive we’re talking about a ancestors SUV, but honestly, it’s added fun to drive than most.
We additionally begin Kia’s affirmation of 6.8 litres for every 100km to be about accurate, too. Over the advance of the week, we were averaging 7.5L/100km, which still agency beneath trips to the bowser than its 2.0-litre petrol stablemates.
You can get a Sportage from aloof $28,990 additional on-roads, but our AWD SLi is priced from $39,690. It comes accepted with a assemblage of kit such as advanced and rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, auto-sensing wipers and headlamps, keyless access with push-button start, 7.0-inch LCD awning with sat-nav, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and dual-zone altitude control. And that’s not the bisected of it.
However, if you appetite all the latest alive assurance systems including dark atom detection, lane-change assist, forward-collision warning, lane-departure admonishing and free emergency braking, you’ll charge to footfall up to the top-spec GT-Line, but that’ll amount you about six-grand more.
Inside, it’s a bit of a alloyed bag. While there are affluence of brownish accents and soft-touch abstracts advance about the cabin, there’s still affluence of grey, so it’s still a bit arid for its mid-spec status. We’re additionally not awash on the infotainment screen, which looks a bit previous-generation to us, admitting it’s both anatomic and accessible to use.
There’s allowance for bristles adults, though, and the leather-appointed seats (front and back) accept abundant bolster to accomplish things adequate in the corners. Boot amplitude is appealing acceptable too, with 466L abaft the rear seats, which expands to 1455L back bankrupt – about flat.
If you’re on a bound budget, you can calmly save about $6000 by activity with the petrol archetypal in the aforementioned SLi trim, but you don’t get AWD, and for me that’s a bit of a affliction because I like the abstraction of all-wheel absorption for those bad-weather days.
The negatives are few and far amid with the Sportage. It absolutely is a solid ancestors amalgamation for those who aren’t brand acquainted and attractive for the accord of apperception that a seven-year branch assurance brings to the table.
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