2017 KIA Sportage First Look: GT Line Quad LEDs + Euro Handling Focus

2016 v 2017 kia sportage

KIA’s push to excel globally is ramping up nicely. Frankfurt, California and Korea-based teams are now aligned to make the most of each area’s strengths.

Korea as the lead manufacturing hub/supplier base, Cali as a tech and design center of excellence, and the European R&D division taking a much bigger role in vehicle development.

It is a smart foundation for KIA’s move to become Hyundai’s sportier cousin. As it stands, the Kia range is broad but lacks a cohesive, defining nature. The firm has their eyes on BMW. If they can engineer cars to be sold world-wide in one chassis setup, why do others spend millions on localization of springs/steering etc?

The new handling push should be the most impressive thing about the new Optima and now the 2017 Sportage.

First look today at the revamped CUV via Kia UK: showing new panels, an all-new nose and tail, and tech goodies galore on a GT Line package. And check out those gorgeous machined alloys!

Most prominent are the quad LED foglamps in the lower bumper corners. A stellar look that emulates the Porsche signature nicely, if a bit less sexily. The new Sorento features these LEDs but they light up sortof dimly thanks to big reflector housings.

Regardless, it is a big step into the future of the Sportage’s look. A triple LED forms the highbeam to seal a very tech-savvy nose look.

Gloss black abounds for 2017 in the place of the 2016 Sportage’s chrome accents, while a new vertically-aligned grille moves forward into the bumper face. This visually extends the hood beyond its previous edge at the upper grille.2017 KIA Sportage 1-horz

The look is meant to share some of the cool urban assault vehicle style of the Provo concept, and is certainly eye-catching. Not exactly beautiful at first sight, but a memorable face to help the Sportage compete with a bumper crop of all-new compact crossovers.

Pricing for the 2016 model is just above $22k, and we expect that for the refresh with a slight bump upward. The posh LEDs front and rear are likely to be a top SX-L trim accent versus standard, by the way.

All told, we’re excited to see KIA move in this handling and sportiness direction — both with exterior design and oily chassis excellence underneath.

2017 KIA Sportage




  • All-new Sportage to be unveiled at IAA Frankfurt
  • New “face” is biggest design change
  • European Design Centre led styling

Kia Motors has today revealed the first official exterior images of the all-new Kia Sportage, featuring a dynamic and strong new design. The all-new Sportage will make its global debut at the Frankfurt International Motor Show on 15 September 2015.

Entering its fourth-generation, the all-new Kia Sportage features a bold, progressive design, with the vehicle’s designers creating a sense of power and agility from every angle. Echoing the contrast of smooth and sharp shapes found on some of the most iconic modern fighter jets, the Sportage creates visual harmony out of the tension between sharp, defined feature lines and smooth surfacing.

The ‘face’ of the all-new Sportage represents the biggest change to the car’s design, with the car’s headlamps no longer integrated with the grille for the new model, instead sweeping back along the outer edges of the more sharply-detailed bonnet and bolder wheel arches. Immediately recognisable as a Kia, the Sportage’s lower, wider ‘tiger-nose’ grille adds more volume to the lower half of the Sportage’s face, resulting in a more imposing appearance and a more stable-looking stance.

The all-new Sportage is characterised by its sportier, more raked profile. From the side, the all-new Sportage retains the swept-back silhouette of the outgoing model, with a roofline that tapers slightly towards the rear of the car, longer front overhangs, shorter rear overhangs and longer wheelbase. Smooth bodywork, bolder wheel arches and sharp lines endow the Sportage with a more dynamic, muscular look.

At the rear, the horizontal forms and surface volume emphasise the car’s width and give the compact SUV a more stable appearance. Inspired by the 2013 Kia Provo concept car, the slim combination lamps are joined by a strip that runs the width of the rear, while turn signals and reversing lights are separated, relocated lower down to add more visual weight and a greater sense of stability to the lower half of the car.

The design of the new Sportage has been led by Kia’s European design studio in Frankfurt, Germany, with input from the brand’s Namyang, Korea and Irvine, California design centres.

About The Author

Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly expanding automotive news magazine. He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank. Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.