IA’S tag line on its advertising is ‘The Power to Surprise’... which I would suggest is no longer true!
That’s because the Korean car maker has been turning out such good cars in recent years that I, for one, am no longer surprised when I get behind the wheel.
That is because I now expect a Kia to be good and this week’s test car - the new Sportage - did not let me down.
At just £22,405 on the road our 1.6 GDi 2 model looked good, went well and had all the essential kit you could need.
That all-new 1591cc diesel four pot gives a 0 to 60 time of 11.1 seconds and a top speed of 113 while being capable of a claimed 44.1mpg on a run (in 130bhp form).
The kit list on this family SUV includes things like smart 17” alloy wheels, rear privacy glass, auto lights and wipers while inside there’s cruise control, dual auto air con, six speaker audio, 7” touchscreen with sat-nav, reversing camera and parking sensors.
Then there are the numerous safety systems, so numerous I don’t have space to mention them all here but top of the list are lane assist, driver attention warning, tyre pressure monitoring and hill start assist. Add to all that Kia’s famous seven years/100,000 mile warranty and you have a pretty impressive package.
So what’s new for 2018? The whole car has had a makeover improving what was already an attractive design. Infotainment and active driver aids are upgraded, there is a new 1.6, 130 to 174bhp diesel engine (as fitted to our test model), GT-Line and GT-Line S versions have been added for a sportier touch, there is a special ‘Edition 25’ to mark 25 years of Sportage production and 21 variants with five engine choices, three gearboxes and six trim levels means even more choice.
There’s also a 2.0-litre diesel with 184bhp that comes as standard with four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox. If you want petrol power, there’s a choice of two 1.6-litre