Power: Torque: Transmission: 0-100 km/h: Top speed:
Economy: CO2 emissions: Price:
1,685 cc, 4-cylinder turbodiesel
85 kw @ 4,000 rpm 280 Nm @ 1,250-2,750 rpm 6-speed manual, 2WD 11.5 seconds 176 km/h 7.8 l/100 km 127 g/km R415,995 Attractive design, good ergonomics and practicality, frugal engine, good dynamics and handling.
The R36 between Dullstroom and Lydenburg has, for all practical purposes, given up on even pretending to be called a road.
If specification level is compared with competitors, pricing is quite high.
A PLEASANT DRIVE
Ergonomics are pleasantly simple with all controls easy to operate. The steering is fully adjustable (tilt and reach), there is central locking, tinted windows to keep out the ferocious Summer sun, and the spare wheel is full size. All windows are fully electric, but closing them requires holding the switch instead of having the luxury of a one-touch procedure. I also found the key start rather old school (it was probably included to keep costs down) and would have been more impressed with keyless start up.
Considering that the Sportage, in sixspeed, front wheel-drive manual mode, delivered frugal fuel-sipping figures of 5.1 l/100 km while in the Kruger, one can understand why the company sells between 160 to 200 of these sought-after SUVS each month. The brakes (all disc) were excellent and fade free, while the Sportage impressed by being directionally stable at high speeds through the sweeps of Schoemanskloof. Overtaking slow, lumbering trucks crawling uphill at 40 km/h was also a piece of cake, with only one downshift required.
The new Sportage Ignite Plus is a competent vehicle in every sense of the word. Not cheap by any means, it more than holds its own against such worthy opponents as cousin Hyundai Tucson, Volkswagen Tiguan, Mazda CX-5, Peugeot 3008, Honda Cr-v,toyota RAV4, and Ford Kuga. It brings a stylish exterior, great fuel economy, a comfortable cabin ambience, and mechanical reliability to the party and comes highly recommended for a Kruger road trip.