Economy, Auto

2017 Kia Sportage Revealed

2017 Kia Sportage Revealed2017 Kia Sportage Revealed

Kia’s new Sportage, the fourth-generation of the sporty compact crossover, debuts in Frankfurt with a sport-inspired new look, a new sport-tuned transmission option, and a sport-styled GT Line trim level.

The new look is interesting to say the least. From the front quarter, the new fascia slightly resembles that of the Porsche Macan with its swept-back headlamp shape and bulging, sculpted hood, but only at a glance and only from this specific angle.

The large quad-LED “Ice Cube” fog light design punctuates the new front end and reinforces the Porsche comparisons, CNET reports.

Viewed head-on, the automaker’s signature Tiger Nose grill gains prominence, making the new headlights appear a bit smallish and slightly cross-eyed.

And in profile, the Sportage is about as bland as the rest of the crossover segment.

Objectively, the next Sportage will be a bit longer (+40mm), but no taller or wider.

A 30-mm longer wheelbase should net the crossover a tad more space for people and their appendages. The new suspension should be stiffer, more controlled and repackaged such that allows the rear cargo floor to sit a bit lower for easier loading.

Speaking of cargo, the automaker’s hands-free access feature will automatically open the rear lift-gate when the driver stands near the back of the vehicle with the smart key transponder on their person.

Perhaps the most exciting bit of news here is the addition of a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission to the options list. Developed in-house by Kia, the DCT will be packaged exclusively with the 1.6-liter turbocharged GDI engine (177 horsepower, 195 pound-feet of torque) and the automaker’s all-wheel drive system.

According to Kia, the new gearbox “has been engineered with low fuel consumption and a sporty driving feel when in manual mode, and with comfort and smoothness when left in automatic mode.” Sounds promising. The European Sportage will also be available with a naturally aspirated, 132-horsepower version of that 1.6-liter gasoline engine with a six-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive.

Atlas Khodro, Kia’s local representative, has no information on when the vehicle will make it to market. They do, however, list the latest Carens model and updated Sorento.

The car is likely to make it to Iran via Persian Gulf littoral states like the UAE, which anticipates the release of the vehicle later this year.