The 2.7 litre V6 engine is a lightweight, compact and all-aluminium affair producing 173 bhp.
How It Drove - Performance
The 2.7 litre V6 engine is a lightweight, compact and all-aluminium affair producing 173 bhp. It is equipped with 24-valves, multi-point injection and three-stage variable intake system to boost torque at low and medium revs, while delivering rapid response to driver commands and efficient fuel combustion. It generates 241 Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm and is the fastest accelerating model in the Sportage range, reaching 0-62 mph in 10.3 seconds and then onto a top speed of 112 mph.
The V6 Sportage’s engine is relatively smooth and refined with a nice grunt on acceleration. We would never call it rapid and overtaking does have to be planned. On occasions there was a noticeable pause whilst the Sportage changed gear on kickdown.
The 2.7 V6 engine is mated to a new-generation ‘adaptive’ four-speed automatic transmission. It offers fully automatic operation, or a driver-operated sequential manual mode which is great when you need fine control over gear changes or perhaps when towing or off road. An electronic controller monitors a range of parameters including acceleration, deceleration, engine speed and oil temperature to ensure optimum, safe gear changes, together with excellent shift quality, quietness, and ease of use.
To be honest we left the gearbox in automatic mode, except when covering some more interesting Irish 'B' roads, and then it was more for fun rather than necessity.
The 4-speed automatic transmission is perfectly matched to the 2.7 V6 engine and it is far more relaxed to drive than a manual vehicle. The downside is fuel economy, whilst touring our consumption dipped to 19.1 mpg and peaked at 27.3 mpg. The lower figure concerned us, fortunately we were able to fill up relatively cheaply in the Irish Republic compared to the UK. In the republic we paid circa 71.2 pence a litre (July 2005), compared to the 92.3 pence a litre we paid on our return to the UK. Kia quote the combined cycle, fuel consumption figure as 28.2mpg and the CO2 figure is 237 g/km with the standard automatic transmission. The automatic diesel Sportage is quoted as 35.3 mpg so there is some gain there, if you don’t mind losing out on performance.
The 2.7 V6 Sportage offers very similar performance figures to the V6 Land Rover Freelander but is more economical with Land Rover quoting a combined cycle figure of 22.7 mpg compared to the Sportage’s 28.2 mpg.
How It Drove - Ride and Handling
We have a favourite route through Wales from the south to the north, which is always a good proving ground. It comprises of both ‘A’ and ‘B’ roads which are usually deserted and allows for various driving styles.
We found the Sportage's steering well weighted and when you become accustomed to its high centre of gravity you can make good progress through bends. Levels of grip are good and although body roll is evident, it is kept in check and cornering was quite fluid. Ride quality on the whole was good and even the infamous Irish roads which can go from good to bad in little over a mile couldn't unsettle it.
The front suspension is common to all Sportage models. It has a subframe beneath the engine bay which supports the McPherson Strut suspension and the steering rack and also helps to isolate the passenger cabin from road surface vibrations. The coil springs are offset for smooth operation and the shock absorber strut incorporates the anti-roll bar mounting point, to provide optimal handling stability and improved ride, without sacrificing mounting rigidity.
The design of the rear suspension is tall and slender, ensuring minimum intrusion into the luggage space. Gas-filled shock absorbers are standard fit for both the front and rear suspension systems for optimal damping performance.
The 2.7 V6 Sportage's chassis has fully independent suspension, rack and pinion steering, and disc brakes all round, with ABS and EBD for maximum stopping power, plus Traction Control and Electronic stability program (ESP).
Overall we were very happy with the 2000 miles plus we spent behind the wheel of the Sportage. We found it far more relaxing and car-like to drive than the Land Rover Freelander which we took around Scotland the previous year.
Kia Sportage Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Kia Sportage 2.7 V6 XS|
|Colour||Satin Silver Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||10.5 Seconds|
|Top Speed||112 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||34.4 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-year unlimited mileage warranty|
3-year roadside assistance package that covers you across mainland Europe as well as in the UK
6-year anti-perforation warranty (Annual bodywork inspection required for which a charge may apply)
3-year paintwork warranty
|Price (when tested on the 14/08/05)||£ 18,495 OTR|