More miles for your money

Halifax Courier - - Classifieds - Fred­eric Manby

Kia’s Sportage fam­ily-sized SUV is the Korean com­pany’s best seller in the United King­dom. Now there’s a brand new one which prom­ises bet­ter econ­omy.

Sales of the “old” Sportage ended at record lev­els last year. Sup­port­ing the retail propo­si­tion for buy­ers is Kia’s unique seven-year war­ranty and an in­stal­ment plan which can put a new Sportage on your doorstep for just £139 a week.

That said, Kia whacked £500 to £1,000 on the price of the new Sportage. The en­try ticket is now nudg­ing £18,000 for the front-wheel-drive 1.6.

The en­try 1 grade brings al­loys, pow­ered and heated mir­rors, air con, dig­i­tal au­dio, blue­tooth with voice recog­ni­tion and mu­sic stream­ing.

Safety stuff in­cludes trailer sta­bil­ity con­trol, hill-start as­sis­tance, down­hill crawl­ing con­trol, cruise con­trol and a speed lim­iter.

Level 1 prices are £17,995 with the 1.6 petrol, £ 19,745 with the 1.7 diesel (likely to be the most pop­u­lar en­gine in the range) and £21,995 with 4x4 trac­tion and a two-litre diesel en­gine.

Kia quotes 45mpg and 166g C02 for this head­liner. Our jaunt in the hills recorded 30mpg on the trip com­puter, which is not en­cour­ag­ing. Yes, it was hilly in parts but the drain go­ing up was off­set by the cruise go­ing down.

The up bits ex­posed the com­bined drone of the six speed au­to­matic gear­box and the lust of the 182bhp diesel.

Next, the hot 174bhp turbo ver­sion of the 1.6 petrol en­gine in GT-Line spec­i­fi­ca­tion, a new en­gine and trim on this Sportage.

De­tails in­clude 19-inch al­loys, skid plates, quad-light front fogs, a flat- bot­tomed steer­ing wheel, leather and the 4x4 drive.

This is the spor­ti­est Sportage, ac­tu­ally, the only sporty Sportage, mak­ing 0-62mph in 8.8 sec­onds with the lovely seven-speed dual clutch au­to­matic gear­box, 37mpg and 175g.

At £25,650 it was the nicest of the three Sportages tested, with a lighter, eas­ier revving feel and sharper han­dling.

The com­puter showed 29mpg. A man­ual gear­box is also of­fered. Last up was the most eco­nom­i­cal we tried, the 114bhp 1.7 diesel with stop start ig­ni­tion, man­ual gears. Rated at 61mpg and 119g it is the low­est emis­sion Sportage. Our test re­sult was 40mpg.

This, reck­oned to be a best-seller, sat be­tween the other two for driv­ing en­joy­ment - its en­gine still a shade loud when hav­ing to work, set­tling into a sub­lime cruise in the right con­di­tions.

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