2011 Kia Sportage — Flash Drive
This 2011 review is representative of model years 2011 to 2013.
By Staff of MSN Autos
I think the Kia Sportage is one of the best-looking compact sport utes on the market. It has great lines and looks quite different than the plethora of small SUVs on the road today. Its interior is top-notch, too. I was impressed by the quality of materials and the fit and finish. The controls on the central console and dashboard are easy to use and functional - there was definitely a lot of planning around the ergonomics. On the road, the Sportage is smooth and maneuverable around town, and the peppy 4-cylinder engine has plenty of power when you need the extra get-up-and-go. Unfortunately, I was rear-ended during the beginning of my test drive by a person who was checking a cell phone. There was a good amount of damage, but I was safe and secure inside. A couple of years ago, I would have never imagined liking a Kia. Now, I encourage anyone to consider a Kia. –Joe Chulick
The 2011 Kia Sportage is a really nice-looking compact SUV with a sporty, bold design. The EX model we tested hits the $30,000 mark, but it included features such as heated and cooled leather seats, a huge panoramic sunroof, and a navigation system with back-up camera. The 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine delivers 176 horsepower through a 6-speed automatic transmission. It provided decent acceleration and good overall drivability, although the throttle tip-in is a little abrupt. On the road, the stiff platform and suspension tuning give the Sportage a crisp and controlled feel without being overly harsh. Steering had an odd resistance, though, making it easy to give too much steering input. A sports car this isn't. Bottom line, the Sportage is efficient and practical, yet it delivers a lot of style and value for the dollar. –Mike Meredith
The all-new Kia Sportage is an amazing improvement over the outgoing model. At first glance, it really stands out from the crowd. Closer examination reveals an impressive interior with nice materials, well-laid-out controls and a surprising amount of storage space. For most uses, the cargo space is more than adequate, and the rear seats fold down easily to fit more gear. The ride is comfortable, although a bit jarring on rough roads, and there were no complaints from my tall rear-seat passenger. The Sportage is no hot rod, but the 176 horsepower is enough to get it moving quickly. I expected better fuel economy, though. Even so, I was able to achieve 23 mpg in mostly city driving. With prices starting at less than $20K - fully loaded at less than $30K — the Sportage should definitely be on your list of small crossovers to consider. –Perry Stern