Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Purposeful and Kind to the Wallet; the Kia Sportage Is a Pleasant Surprise, Vani Naidoo Tells Why

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Purposeful and Kind to the Wallet; the Kia Sportage Is a Pleasant Surprise, Vani Naidoo Tells Why

Article excerpt

EVER get the feeling that the more things change the more they stay the same.

There is a certain kind of comfort in knowing that your mum will always cook far too much at Christmas lunch, that when you bring company home your dad will always roll out his tried and tested (and so not funny) repertoire of jokes and that every time you leave the checkout counter at the supermarket you will always shake your head at how much more a bag of groceries cost.

It is a familiarity that breeds a sort of security rather than contempt and that certainly seems to be the case with the Kia Sportage. It has been available in Australia for more than a decade now and apart from a few tweaks to the engine and minor nips and tucks to a sleek body, it remains in essence what it always has been - a good-looking SUV competent on the road, competent off the road and easy on the hip pocket.

Comfort

Kia has done some work on the interior of the Sportage and it is definitely a visible improvement. The driver and passenger seats are a bit larger and padded in just the right places ensuring long drives are much more comfortable than in previous models.

Leg room is ample and all gadgets are within easy reach of the driver. Instruments are easy to read but some bits feel plasticky - although that seems to be the case in most cars these days.

Over-bonnet visibility is excellent as is the view to all sides with good, large mirrors also aiding visibility.

The back seats fold down in an easy 50/50 split, an added boost to a pretty ample boot.

On the road

Buyers can chose between four and six cylinders. The Sportage is willing, offering the best fight within its means and the drive is comfortable enough and pretty smooth going especially on the highway.

Off-road the Sportage is a pleasant surprise with good ground clearance and the added benefits of a limited slip rear differential allowing for a solid performance. …

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