2017 Kia Sportage SX AWD (1134)

Overview:

This is the 2017 Kia Sportage SX AWD SUV or as some refer to it, CUV for Crossover Utility Vehicle. As if time isn’t passing fast enough a 2017 model year is on the scene. Really. Can’t they wait?

Although it is ahead of its time according to the calendar, it isn’t even significantly different from the 2016 in wheel base and overall length. The styling in this very popular segment of the market is mostly clones of one another. The differential in all brands is more importantly a matter of company philosophy in my opinion. That, in itself however, will determine the quality at the end of your day. It will be YOU who must maintain your vehicle for a long way away from the showroom floor. So selecting the long relationship you will have with that most useful of assets, should be made carefully.

There is something special about a “Brand New” car that no one else has driven. Is it worth the new car cost depreciation between that showroom floor and the street just feet from the highway because that is where it will spend the rest of its life? That is the consumer’s decision to make. All the same, I’m guessing, most of us have been happy with a used car that someone else did in fact drive and care for or abuse. But it also was they who had to suffer the sometime necessity of getting the bugs out. Nothing and no one is perfect.  .  . not even my hero Hyundai and Kia as a company.

I’m biased because I work with Hyundai in another area of the company. That experience has influenced my decision to recommend their products. No they are not perfect but they are special when it comes to a manufacturing company. I have to clarify that a bit because they are a relatively young car maker, which explains why they are as good as they are. The new kid on the block has to give more to gain your confidence and thus your business. For the consumer that should be a big factor in their buying decision.

This Kia’s warranty is among the very best available in today’s world. The quality will be obvious to you on the very first test drive. And as important is the great list of features at competitive pricing that make the driving experience a very good one.

General Information: It is assembled in Korea; Parts – US/Canadian 1%, Korea 96%; Engine and transmission – Korea; Classification is Small SUV. Cars from Kia: Cadenza, Forte, Forte 5, K900, Optima, Rio, Rio 5-door, Sedona, Sorento, Soul, Soul EV and Sportage.

Opinion:

It has been my observation over the past few years that the most aggressive and fast drivers on the highway today drive Honda cars. I simply wonder why. But they must be either very lucky or stealthily pilot their Honda’s invisibly to pass undetected by the CHP. Why? Because, according to Insurance.com, they are not in the top of the list. In fact they are 131 out of over 300 more ticketed brands and models. They are just a little over the average for all cars. Subaru WRX is number one and that is easy for me to believe. Not because I’ve been ticketed while driving / testing one, but rather because they are not only fast cars, they handle as if they were on rails at a Six Flags Magic Mountain ride.

Another observation is that for the most part today’s drivers are better than they have ever been. That is partly because of the vast improvement in the technology that makes them hug the road and stop even when the driver is day dreaming. I’m sure you have also noticed, however, that some drivers just don’t get it – that driving a car is a great responsibility. Example: if you are not passing traffic on your right that is the lane you belong in. The fast lane is on the left and traffic is more orderly when you find the correct lane that suits your driving and speed habits. There is nothing wrong with driving slower than others but it is appreciated when you do it in the correct lane. Just say’n.

Handling & Performance:

Handling and performance is “As good as it gets”.

Styling:

Pretty car but ordinary in the whole scheme of things.

Fit and Finish:

Very good which is a characteristic of Asian car makers in particular. Those who are old enough to remember the phrase “Made in Japan” know that it wasn’t always so.

Cost:

All things considered this Kia is Very Competitively priced.

Conveniences and comfort:

Perhaps the most desirable and important features on the automotive market for me is the Blind Spot Detection system.  #2 for me is the Smart Cruise with Crash avoidance capability. Those features are very timely since without them you can’t safely text while driving. Just kidding of course.

Consumer Recommendations:

Do include these Korean cars in your search for one of the most utility of assets you will ever purchase. You won’t regret it, I promise.

Recognized Competition:

Kia Sportage SX $34,000, Honda CRV $34,000, Mazda CX-5 $31,000, Ford Escape $32,000, Hyundai Tucson $26,000.

Good News:

Great features especially the safety systems.

Bad News:

Only fair fuel economy.

Standard Equipment:

2.0 liter 4-cylinder turbo gas injected engine, 6-speed automatic transmission, AWD all wheel drive,  19” alloy wheels, front, side and full length side curtain airbags, ABS braking system, traction control, stability control, downhill brake and hill start assist control, tire pressure monitor, climate control, Harmon Kardon audio system, UVO 8” navigation with Android auto, Sirius XM satellite radio, leather seat trim, heated and ventilated front seats, push button start with smart key, heated steering wheel with paddle shifters, rear cameral display, blind spot detection, Lane change assist, land departure warning system, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking assist, autonomous emergency braking. Auto headlights, daytime running lights, LED fog and tail lights, power folding heated mirrors with turn signal lights, Panoramic Sunroof, smart hands free power lift gate, 10 year / 100,000 limited powertrain warranty.

Gas Stats:

$2.95 Gal avg. April 1, 2016

www.fueleconomy.gov

for more information.

20 City and 23 Highway MPG

Pricing:

MSRP $34,000.

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2014 – An Automotive Love Affair.