The 2014 Kia Sportage SI Premium 2WD is a continuance of the success that was first hinted at as the Kue concept car, star of the 2007 Detroit Motor Show. It extends the appeal of the Sportage to those that like all the qualities of the AWD wagon style without the additional costs associated with the AWD system. Kia’s philosophy I’m sure is why change a successful formula.
The external design features a new front grille, new LED rear lamp clusters, a new range of alloy wheels with a choice of 16-, 17- or 18-inch diameter, and a shark-fin roof antenna. The new Si Premium grade sits at the top of the 2WD range of the 2014
Sportage with a standard 6-speed automatic gearbox, 17-inch alloys, automatic headlamps, roof rails, reversing camera, leather and cloth trim seats, outside mirror mounted indicators, LED running lights and driver lumbar support.
Inside, the enhanced Sportage benefits from greater use of soft-touch materials across the dashboard and the upper door panels, a new Supervision instrument cluster with a 4.2-inch LCD display screen and manual 6 way adjustable driver’s seat. The lumbar support is manually adjusted. Inside is comfortable. While it has all the gadgets and packed with features it is a little bland. All black is a little blah!
In front of you there is the now familiar thick-rimmed four-spoke leather steering wheel and the ‘three-cylinder’ instrument cluster, which have clear and precise graphics. The centre stack houses the audio and connectivity etc. There is no Sat Nav which is a little disappointing. The audio system is great and connectivity for my iPhone was simple. The sound from the system is more than enough and I like the speed sensitive feature.
The steering wheel, which houses controls for audio, cruise control and variable ratio steering is both height and reach adjustable and with the variance on seat movement its possible to obtain a very comfortable driving position. Visibility is good with the exception of a large blind spot with the rear ‘C’ pillars. I like the fact you sit high with a commanding front view of the road.
Another important aspect to buyers in my age group is safety and the Kia has that by the bucket full. There are six airbags, stability control with traction control, anti-lock brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist. Hill-start assist and downhill brake control are also standard along with disc brakes and active front head restraints. To be honest I don’t really understand nor care what a lot of those do, it’s comforting to know that the car is safe and has a 5 star safety rating. Big tick for me.
Driving the Kia is also easy with heaps of driver comfort features such as standard Bluetooth with phone and media streaming, cruise control, power windows, tinted glass, projection headlamps with cornering lamps, trip computer, keyless entry and rain sensing wipers. There is also adequate storage with a front console centre console storage boxes, centre cup and door bottle holders etc.
I did notice how much quieter this model was and apparently they have done a lot of work in that area, noticeably a number of changes designed to minimise noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) and a new soundproof windscreen, with an interlayer film between the glass laminations, reduces wind noise.
Overall the Kia was sporty off the mark, drove well, was pretty quiet and stopped great. It was smooth to drive, was good on fuel, had a heap of features that appeal to my age group and most importantly fitted my friends and their gear in for a weekend away. It is well priced but the missing Sat Nav was a big disappointment. The warranty, road side assistance and capped price servicing however is brilliant.
• Interior quality
• Space and comfort
• Value for money
• Not AWD so can’t go on beach
• Foot brake
• No Sat Nav
KIA SPORTAGE SI PREMIUM 2WD $32,246 RDAP
Model Sportage SI Premium
Model Price $32,246 RDAP
Engine 2.0L 4 Cyl Petrol
Drivetrain 2WD 6 speed Auto
Power 122 Kw @ 6,200 rpm
Torque 205 Nm @ 4,000 rpm
Safety 5 Star ANCAP
CO2 Emissions 200 g/km
GVR 3 ½ Star
Economy 8.4 L/100km (ADR comb)
Tow Capacity Max 1600 kg
Tow Ball Rating 160 kg
Servicing Capped Price
Warranty 7yr/ Unlimited km with full roadside assist
Overall AnyAuto Rating: 79/100
Behind the Wheel 8
Fit for Purpose 8
Segment Appeal 7
Value for Money 10