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#9

in Affordable Compact SUVs

MSRP: $21,600 - $28,400
Invoice: $20,727 - $26,504
MPG: 21 City / 28 Hwy
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Kia Sportage Review

The 2014 Kia Sportage ranks 9 out of 22 Affordable Compact SUVs. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Kia Sportage, as well as reliability and safety data.

The 2014 Kia Sportage is ranked:

The 2014 Kia Sportage impresses reviewers with its capable turbocharged engine option and responsive transmission, but lacks the interior space and comfortable ride of top-ranked compact SUVs.

The Sportage is available with an optional turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which test drivers say provides ample power. As a result, many note that the turbocharged Sportage offers swift acceleration and is fun to drive. Reviewers are also pleased with the 2014 Sportage's quick, responsive six-speed automatic transmission. With fuel economy estimates of 21/28 mpg city/highway with the base four-cylinder engine, the Kia Sportage’s fuel economy is slightly subpar for the class. Automotive journalists agree that the Sportage has nimble handling, and that quick, responsive steering further bolsters the Sportage’s fun factor. However, some competing SUVs have a more comfortable ride, as critics note the Sportage’s firm suspension creates a jarring ride over rough roads.

The Kia Sportage’s seats disappoint nearly all automotive critics who think the back seat is small, and that all seats are too firm to be comfortable. Additionally, some note that poor outward visibility doesn’t inspire confidence from the driver’s seat. Cargo space is also quite small for the class, measuring significantly less than the space in rivals like the Subaru Forester and Honda CR-V. However, the Sportage's interior earns praise from some reviewers who say that despite its hard plastics, build quality is good and materials are attractive. Auto writers also think the Kia Sportage's optional navigation system is generally intuitive. The 2014 Kia Sportage comes standard with a six-speaker stereo, satellite radio, Bluetooth, a USB port, an auxiliary input and steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls. Optional features include a UVO eServices infotainment system, a 7-inch touch-screen navigation system, push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, a rearview camera and a backup warning system.

  • "The Sportage is more than just a pretty face. This is a truly compact crossover. While that means cargo capacity is subpar, the benefits of downsizing are evident from behind the wheel. Whether you're darting through urban streets or making time on a rural byway, the Sportage feels more like a nimble hatchback than a high-riding utility vehicle. Toss in the all-wheel-drive options and the Sportage becomes a year-round commuter that can handle almost any weather condition." -- AutoTrader
  • "Sportage's racy styling sacrifices some outward visibility, and fuel economy falls a bit below par for the class. Otherwise, Sportage delivers a host of standard features, an impressive list of luxury options, and the bonus of Kia's strong warranty." -- Consumer Guide (2013) 
  • "If maximum interior space, a smooth ride and good 360-degree visibility are important factors in your car-buying decision, the … Kia Sportage probably won't float your boat. Best look to a Subaru Forester or Honda CR-V." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)

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Other SUVs to Consider

Reviewers say that the Jeep Cherokee has an eye-catching cabin that’s built with premium materials. Additionally, the Cherokee earns praise for its balanced handling and powerful V6 engine option.

Test drivers think the GMC Terrain has a comfortable ride and a quiet interior, as well as numerous standard features. The Terrain also has more cargo space than the Sportage, and test drivers like its roomy back seat.

Compare the Sportage, Cherokee and Terrain »

Details: 2014 Kia Sportage

The 2014 Kia Sportage seats five and comes standard with front-wheel drive. A 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a six-speed automatic transmission come standard, while a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine is optional. The Kia Sportage is available in three trims: LX, EX and SX. The Sportage gets a more powerful base engine and gains some new standard and optional features for 2014, but sees few other changes. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2011 through 2014 model years.

See the full 2014 Kia Sportage specs »

Review Last Updated: 5/16/14

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