Fifth-generation Kia Sportage will share mechanicals with the recently-revealed Hyundai Tucson, which means that plug-in hybrid tech is coming
The next-generation Kia Sportage has been spied wearing a light disguise, as the Korean brand prepares its family crossover for competition with the Volkswagen Tiguan and Peugeot 3008.
The fifth edition of Kia’s SUV will follow in the footsteps of the recently revealed Tucson from parent brand Hyundai, and looks set to share much of that car’s mechanical makeup and in-car tech.
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This similarity will extend to the overall proportions of the two cars too. Despite the disguise the Sportage wears in these images snapped at the Nurburgring Nordschleife, the Tucson-esque silhouette is clear to see. Through the light cladding, it’s possible to make out that Kia’s signature “tiger nose” grille appears to extend across much of the car’s fascia, with a clamshell bonnet following its path at its upper edge.
Details towards the rear of the car are well hidden by the camouflage, but it’s likely that the Sportage will borrow cues from Kia’s larger SUVs like the Sorento and the American market Telluride.
Should the next Sportage make use of the Tucson’s full engine lineup, electrification will feature heavily through the range. The Hyundai features a 48-volt mild hybrid setup on both petrol and diesel engines, a standard hybrid setup (similar to that of the Kia Niro) which combines a 1.6 petrol engine with a 59bhp electric motor, and a plug in model which teams up the same combustion engine with a larger motor and battery combination. This should enable the PHEV version to cover most drivers’ average commutes in a fully electric mode.
The latest Tucson also offers drivers the option of adaptive dampers for the suspension for the first time; it’s likely that such a system will be offered on the Sportage, too.
Sales of the Sportage aren’t expected until after the Tucson has hit showrooms, so a launch in 2022 is likely.
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