Flash Drive: 2023 Kia Sportage

Flash Drive: 2023 Kia Sportage


One thing for Everybody

When Kia says the 2023 Sportage is all-new, consider them. However it’s greater than a bigger and extra succesful Sportage, now in its fifth technology and Kia’s longest-running mannequin, however one that gives three propulsion programs, together with the X-Professional trail-rated mannequin for many who need to go off-roading.

Kia just lately invited members of the automotive press to drive the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid and X-Professional in sunny Palm Springs, California. This Flash Drive will contact on each fashions, that are considerably completely different autos, spotlighting the Sportage Hybrid. Clear Fleet Report could have detailed critiques of the Sportage gasoline, hybrid and finally the plug-in hybrid within the coming months.

Redone and expanded

Powertrain Combine

Sportage LX, EX, SX, SX Status

Entrance-Wheel Drive (FWD)

2.5-Liter Inline 4-cylinder, Gasoline

8-speed automated transmission

187 horsepower (hp) and 178 pound-feet of torque (lb.-ft.)

Gasoline Economic system: 25 mpg metropolis/32 freeway/28 mixed

2023 Kia Sportage
Prepared for actual off-roading

Sportage X-Line, X-Professional, X-Professional Status

All-Wheel Drive (AWD)

2.5-Liter Inline 4-cylinder, Gasoline

8-speed automated transmission

187 hp and 178 lb.-ft. torque

EPA Gasoline Economic system: 23 mpg metropolis/28 freeway/25 mixed

Sportage Hybrid


1.6-Liter Inline 4-cylinder Turbo+44 kilowatt (kW) motor, Gasoline-Electrical

6-speed automated transmission

227 hp and 258 lb.-ft. torque

1.49 kilowatt-hour (kWh) battery

EPA Gasoline Economic system: As much as 42 mpg metropolis/44 hwy/43 mixed (FWD)

Sportage Plug-In Hybrid


1.6-Liter Inline 4-cylinder Turbo+66.9 kW motor, Gasoline-Electrical

6-speed automated transmission with shift-by-wire

261 hp and 258 lb.-ft. torque

13.8 kWh battery

EPA Gasoline Economic system: TBD, must be just like hybrid; 32-mile all-electric vary

Sportage Hybrid: On-Street Driving Enjoyment

2023 Kia Sportage
Able to deal with the ups & downs

It’s no shock the all-new 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid was a high quality expertise on the street, as all Kia hybrids Clear Fleet Report has examined have been reward worthy. Departing the Kimpton Rowan Lodge in downtown Palm Springs, we headed-up the Palms To Pines Freeway (California Freeway 74) that begins at 250-foot elevation and crests at 6,500. Climbing and descending this twisting street can be a real check for any automotive, SUV or truck, however when testing a hybrid there may be an additional test on the efficiency the electrical motor provides to the gasoline engine.

Within the case of the Sportage Hybrid, that efficiency was simply noticeable because it delivered easy seamless energy. The dealing with, with the middle of gravity dropped by the low placement of the batteries and using the E-Dealing with expertise, was optimistic and direct and would solely be enhanced if the all-season tires would get replaced with summer season tires. However, since Kia didn’t design neither is advertising and marketing the Sportage Hybrid as a sport compact crossover, we had been completely glad with its dealing with and cornering skills.

Cornering is just nearly as good because the brakes, and the regenerative system on the Sportage Hybrid was close to excellent. Regenerative braking makes use of the electrical motor to transform kinetic power into electrical power when making use of the brakes or coasting and shops it within the battery. The Sportage was set to a medium regeneration pressure, delivering an help to the brakes. Merely lifting off the accelerator pedal was loads to sluggish the Sportage on many corners.

 Hybrid Easy Operator

The 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder gasoline engine is mated to a 44-kWh electrical motor that’s powered by a 1.49-kWh lithium-ion battery. There are driver-selectable drive modes of Eco, Good, Sport and Snow (the latter is on AWD fashions solely). Eco is the default setting for the perfect gasoline financial system within the hybrid system with Sport mode producing a faster transmission response and essentially the most spirited driving, good for 0-60 instances round 7.65 seconds.

2023 Kia Sportage
Dino-mite on the street

As we descended the all-downhill 43 miles on CA 243 from Idyllwild to the Cabazon Dinosaurs, we reveled within the quick regeneration of the battery and in addition the effectivity of Kia hybrid system. We had been capable of journey as much as 60 mph with the tachometer pegged at zero, that means, in fact, the gasoline a part of the hybrid system was not working, and we had been cruising on full electrical energy.

The 6-speed automated transmission is invisible with its shifts, making us suppose we had been driving a CVT. We took benefit of this quiet drive by means of the pine timber to open the panoramic sunroof and revel in close to silent cruising. There are a lot of causes for proudly owning a automotive with some kind of electrification–not listening to an engine working is one in all them.

On our 60-mile drive within the Sportage Hybrid we averaged 45 mpg. This exceeded the EPA estimate of 43 mpg, which is all the time a satisfying feeling, particularly in a crossover weighing 3,834 kilos. This EPA ranking is increased than the Sportage hybrid’s key compact crossover rivals of the Ford Escape Hybrid, Hyundai Tucson Hybrid, Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, and the Honda CR-V Hybrid.

 New Design: Out and In

2023 Kia Sportage
Room for adults

The Kia Sportage has been utterly redesigned for 2023 and is available in seven trims over two fashions. The LX, EX, SX, and SX Status carry a extra elegant look, whereas the trail-ready trims of X-Line, X-Professional and X-Professional Status are extra rugged with elevated floor clearance of 8.3-inches versus 7.1-inches.

All fashions are longer, taller and wider than the outgoing Sportage, leading to class-leading rear-seat leg room and rear cargo house. All retain the model’s signature Tiger Nostril grille with boomerang daytime working lights being a key design function. The rear will get arrow-shaped LED taillights which are related throughout the hands-free energy carry gate by a skinny black graphic strip.

Essentially the most dominant function on the rear is the deep set panel that’s coated in black cladding, sitting above a twin “C” formed chrome fascia. We preferred this design greatest with the darkish exterior colours of Fusion Black, Gravity Grey, Shadow Matte Grey and the very engaging Jungle Inexperienced that’s solely accessible on the Sportage X-Professional Status AWD mannequin. The colour palette is accomplished with Metal Grey, Snow White Pearl, Vesta Blue and Dawning Pink.

Welcoming Inside

Climbing contained in the extremely featured Sportage Hybrid SX-Status, the cabin is clear, nicely thought-out and fashionable. The tasteful mixture of laborious and delicate plastic supplies, piano black surfaces, and brushed aluminum trim properly complemented the Carmine Pink seats coated in SynTex, an artificial leather-based materials that’s delicate to the contact, resists spills and is simple to scrub.

2023 Kia Sportage
Smooth new insides, too

The low profile, no-nonsense sprint homes a 12.3-inch sleekly curved thin-film-transistor liquid-crystal show that, with no break, consists of the instrument cluster and the colour touchscreen with navigation, the rear view digicam and Kia Join, which supplies entry to car programs, together with distant begin and distant charging.

The nice-sounding 8-speaker, 315-watt Harman Kardon audio system with a subwoofer performs AM/FM/SiriusXM and consists of wired Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The steering wheel has controls for audio, smartphone integration with Bluetooth and the adaptive cruise management. Wi-fi cellphone charging is a handy contact, however be aware the USB entrance and rear ports are C-type, that means you could must buy an A-to-C adapter twine for charging and streaming.

Kia has a intelligent design to go between the dual-zone local weather controls and infotainment controls. On the slim horizontal display under the principle contact display, when urgent the capacitive contact factors for the temperature and fan, the radio controls seem, which embrace quantity and channel knobs. This house saver had a brief studying curve, shortly displaying its advantages.

The heated and ventilated entrance seats had been snug. The motive force will get 10-way energy changes with lumbar, whereas the passenger will get 8-way energy changes. The padded middle console has deep storage.

The 7.1 inches of floor clearance offered a transparent outlook on the street. Even with the ability sunroof, there may be ample headroom for 2 six-footers within the heated rear seats. The rear passengers get a middle armrest with cup holders and HVAC vents, however no USB cost ports. If there are not any passengers out again, drop the 60/40 break up rear seat and the storage space not solely will increase, however is able to load cargo by means of the simple entry massive hatch opening.

Sportage X-Professional: Very Succesful Off-Street

The place the two.5L gas-powered Sportage X-Professional and X-Professional Status shine is off-road; not rock crawling, however discover a fireplace street, dust street to a mountain lake and even some seashore cruising, and the X-Professional may be very succesful.

Off-road cred comes from the 8.3-inch floor clearance, brief entrance and rear overhangs, low numbers for the strategy, departure and breakover angle, multi-terrain drive modes tuned for optimum traction and the very severe BF Goodrich 235/65 all-terrain tires mounted on 17-inch matte-black off-road wheels. A number of cameras present the bottom at every wheel, plus entrance and rear views.

Design-wise, the X-Professional has a extra rugged look than the Hybrid, with raised roof rack rails, LED fog and projector headlights for improved nighttime imaginative and prescient, entrance and rear bumpers with a skid plate-shaped design and distinctive tread-like stitching on the seats.

Security and Warranties

 The Sportage comes customary with twin entrance, twin seat-mounted facet, driver’s knee, and full-length facet curtain airbags, car stability administration, traction management, hill begin help, a tire strain monitoring system and an engine immobilizer.

2023 Kia Sportage
The tires had been a compromise, however did the job

The intensive record of superior driver security help system (ADAS) features a 360-degree encompass view digicam, blind spot monitor and avoidance, automated emergency braking, adaptive cruise management, rear cross site visitors alert and automated braking, and the Protected Exit Warning alert.

The 2023 Kia Sportage comes with these warranties:

  • Powertrain                    10 years/100,000 miles
  • Battery                           10 years/100,000 miles *Hybrid mannequin solely*
  • Fundamental                               5 years/60,000 miles 
  • Roadside Help    5 years/60,000 miles 
  • Anti-perforation           5 years/100,000 miles


The 2023 Sportage comes with these base costs, together with the necessary $1,255 vacation spot cost, starting from $27,245 to $38,045. The pricing is for the 2 fashions coated above.

2023 Kia Sportage
Sure, we acquired soiled

Sportage Hybrid

LX FWD             $28,515

LX AWD             $30,345

EX                        $37,725

SX-Status        $37,725

Sportage X-Professional

X-Professional                     $36,245

X-Professional Status     $38,045

Observations: 2023 Kia Sportage

 Clear Fleet Report had no concept after we went to the media launch program in Palm Springs we might be driving two completely different fashions of the identical car. How completely different are they? In case you are trying primarily for an on-road compact crossover that will get stellar gasoline financial system, the 2023 Sportage Hybrid is for you. If frequent medium-style off-road excursions are your factor, the Sportage X-Professional must be in your purchasing record.

2023 Kia Sportage
Shifting as much as the pinnacle of hybrid pack

The Sportage Hybrid affords versatility, a strong trip, snug seats, customary security tools an excellent guarantee, is available in front- and all-wheel drive, and is competitively priced in opposition to its compact crossover hybrid rivals.  The Sportage X-Professional is equally as versatile for passengers and their gear, however not as gasoline environment friendly, giving the choice of getting soiled, muddy, or coated in snow with a smile in your face.

So which 2023 Kia Sportage is best for you? As of Could 2022, the X-Line and X-Professional are in sellers, with the Hybrid arriving by early summer season. Kia says the plug-in hybrid will probably be accessible later in the summertime. The timing is true to go to your native supplier and check-out the all-new Sportage, and see which one is best for you.

Be sure that to opt-in to the Clear Fleet Report e-newsletter (high proper of web page) to be notified of all new tales and car critiques.

Story by John Faulkner. Photographs by John Faulkner and Kia.

The Compact Hybrid Crossover Competitors

Flash Drive: 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid

Street Check: 2022 Hyundai Tucson Hybrid

Street Check: 2019 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

Street Check: 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid


Clear Fleet Report is loaned free check autos from automakers to judge, usually for per week at a time. Our street checks are primarily based on this one-week drive of a brand new car. Due to this we don’t handle points corresponding to long-term reliability or whole value of possession. As well as, we are sometimes invited to producer occasions highlighting new autos or expertise. As a part of these occasions we could also be provided free transportation, lodging or meals. We do our greatest to current our unvarnished evaluations of autos and information irrespective of those inducements.

Our focus is on autos that supply the perfect gasoline financial system of their class, which leads us to emphasise electrical vehicles, plug-in hybrids, hybrids and diesels. We additionally function these environment friendly gas-powered autos which are among the many high mpg autos of their class. As well as, we purpose to supply critiques and information on superior expertise and the choice gasoline car market. We welcome any suggestions from car house owners and are devoted to offering a discussion board for various viewpoints. Please tell us your views at writer@cleanfleetreport.com.


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October 2022