The Kia Sportage has undergone a remarkable transformation in compact crossovers, evolving from a mere contender to a dominant force in its segment. The exquisite interior it boasts undeniably contributes to this newfound glory. This review’ll delve into the facets that have elevated Sportage’s interior to unparalleled competitiveness and sophistication.
Embracing Spaciousness: A Game-Changer
The most conspicuous upgrade in this iteration of the Kia Sportage is its sheer size. The interior dimensions have significantly expanded, creating a notable increase in backseat legroom and cargo capacity. These enhancements catapult the Sportage to the forefront of its class. The rear bench’s adaptability, allowing for reclining or upright positioning, further adds to its versatility. Interestingly, a spare tire is thoughtfully concealed beneath the cargo floor for those opting for either the Hybrid or gas-only version. The Sportage’s expansive interior raises a compelling proposition – if you’re in the market for a three-row SUV primarily for the extra space they provide, the Sportage could prompt you to reconsider. Conversely, if you seek a more compact SUV experience, the Sportage might not align with your preferences. However, given American consumers’ prevailing penchant for spacious vehicles, this niche is undoubtedly catered to.
A Glimpse into Modernity: The Interior Aesthetics
Stepping into the Sportage’s cabin is akin to entering a realm of modernity and elegance. Drawing inspiration from the acclaimed Kia EV6, the Sportage features a captivating panoramic curved display encompassing two 12.3-inch high-resolution screens. This innovative design subtly angles the infotainment system towards the driver, ensuring optimal usability without neglecting the passenger’s perspective. The screen showcases an appealing black-and-purple color scheme, powered by Kia’s responsive software. While both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are seamlessly integrated, wireless functionality is regrettably absent. The digital cluster, a noteworthy inclusion, introduces fluid animations during drive mode transitions, complemented by varying views and colors contingent on the selected mode.
Intuitive Controls: A Well-Engineered Experience
Beneath the screen, a versatile control panel beckons – a recurring feature across Kia’s product line. This intuitive panel permits effortless toggling between climate adjustments and radio/navigation controls. Beyond streamlining the dashboard’s aesthetics, this system ensures the retention of “physical” controls for frequently used functions, minimizing clutter. However, a caveat emerges for those habitually tweaking climate settings, as excessive toggling could become slightly annoying.
In a nod to practicality, the Sportage retains physical buttons for heated/cooled seats and a heated steering wheel. These essential features are conveniently positioned on the center console, obviating the need to navigate through menus. Simplifying the charging process, a capacious compartment beneath the center stack houses multiple outlets, accompanied by a wireless phone charger. Notably, the cupholders feature adjustable holders, granting the flexibility to repurpose the space for storage or beverages.
Refinement Amidst Imperfections: Material Selection
While the Sportage’s interior impresses, the choice of materials warrants scrutiny. Excessive reliance on piano black plastic in high-touch areas is a minor drawback. The initial gleam of these surfaces swiftly succumbs to the accumulation of dust and fingerprints, compromising the aesthetic appeal. This predicament extends to the entire center console and door panels, a design choice that demands reconsideration. Given the typical usage scenarios for a vehicle like this, characterized by family activities and everyday routines, the susceptibility of these surfaces to scratches becomes an annoyance for those who appreciate a pristine appearance.
A Kaleidoscope of Colors: Styling Triumphs
In the realm of interior colors and styling, Kia’s prowess shines brilliantly. With an array of color options linked to specific trims and powertrain configurations, the Sportage offers choices like Sage Green, Carmine Red, and the captivating Triton Navy/Misty Gray two-tone combination. Remarkably, even the steering wheel is available in blue, exemplifying Kia’s commitment to unique design elements. The breadth of color possibilities, even in lower trim levels, is a testament to Kia’s dedication to personalization. Opting for one of these distinctive combinations is an enticing proposition, enhancing Sportage’s visual allure.
A Juggernaut of Interior Excellence
In culmination, Kia has undeniably forged an interior masterpiece within the new Sportage. While minor quibbles do exist, they pale compared to the overall brilliance that this interior exudes. As a result, the Sportage remains an eminent contender in the realm of SUVs. We encourage you to explore our detailed 2023 Kia Sportage review and buying guide for a comprehensive overview of the entire Sportage lineup.