When my 2013 Kia Sportage was dropped off at my house so I could test drive it for review, it was suggested I’d “love” its turbo action. Alas, the nice gentleman doing the drop-off didn’t realize I don’t do anything fast, or “turbo charged.” I ski, bike and hike cautiously — and drive that way, too. So, at first, I actually found the Kia’s racecar-like turbo feature a bit surprising and daunting. After all, my typical ride is a beat-up 2004 Toyota Sienna minivan. There’s nothing turbo about it. After a couple days of driving the Kia Sportage, my husband figured out I could temper the turbo action by pressing an ECO button to the left of the steering wheel (ostensibly to get better gas mileage). After that, the KIA was much more my speed (pun!) and I found a lot to like about the sporty cross-over vehicle.
Since my regular ride (the old minivan) has few bells and whistles, I absolutely loved the Kia Sportage’s Navigation with Sirius XM Traffic. While I just drove the KIA within a 30-mile radius of my house (no need for maps or navigating assistance), I think the good-sized touch screen with live highway conditions would be very helpful for road trips.
Another fave in this car was the USB port so that we could play our own music via iPhones and iPods. We did listen to Sirius a lot, but it’s always nice to listen to “your” music when you want it.
Another highlight: the panoramic sunroof. There were actually two “sunroofs” — the glass on the roof above the front seats opened for fresh air, while the glass roof above the back seats allowed in sunlight (but it didn’t open to the outside). Still, I loved letting in sunlight for all the passengers (namely my children in the back seats).
As temperatures dropped in Colorado last month, I made good use of the heated driver’s seat, but was also taken with the idea of the air-cooled driver’s seat. I’d love to have this feature in any car I drive in the summer months!
The car has a push-button start and keyless entry, which is awesome. I could carry the FOB “key” in my purse and when I’d get close to the car, I would just press a button on the driver’s door handle to open the car door, as the handle would somehow sense that the FOB was near. Very convenient!
I found the Kia Sportage plenty roomy for our family of four (the car seats five) for local day trips. While we’re accustomed to a huge “trunk” in our minivan for long road trips, I was impressed with the Kia’s spacious cargo area, and I like the organizational compartments under the “floor” of the cargo area that allowed for still more storage. That would be great for packing gear for short road trips or day adventures in the outdoors, for sure.
These are just a few of my favorite features of the fuel-efficient Kia Sportage SX AWD (which gets 21 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway). For the full list of specs and options, visit Kia.com, and click on “Vehicles” then “Sportage.”