Korean marque Kia has made a huge splash in the United States where, for the 2020 model year, they’ve given the poor Yanks the same Sportage that the rest of the world has had for some time. But before you chuckle heartily, they do get one pretty big thing that we still can’t have. More on that in a sec.
Visually, the 2020 Sportage for the US-market is now aligned with what global markets get, as seen by the front and rear bumpers. The only small change is the ‘skid plate’ on the front bumper, which is set at a bit of an angle on US cars to provide for a better approach angle. Just in case, you know.
Further, the 2020 Sportage gains advanced driver assistance smarts, like intelligent cruise control, lane-keep assist, driver drowsiness alert, automatic high-beams, and AEB with pedestrian detection. The new Sportage also gets a new 8.0-inch standard touchscreen infotainment system, incorporating sat-nav and smartphone mirroring. There’s also wireless smartphone charging, ‘Sorfino’ faux-leather upholstery, and a new ‘Steel Grey’ paint finish for the exterior.
They also get a new Sportage S, which we know as the Sportage GT-Line.
The US market continues to get the same 2.4-litre atmo petrol mill on base models (135kW/237Nm), and a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol on higher-spec models (179kW/352Nm). Power goes to a 6-speed auto either way, though the choice between front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive depends on trim.
Unfortunately, while the US-market continues to benefit from that torquey turbo-4, we’re still stuck with our turbodiesel. According to Kia Australia, the turbocharged 2.0-litre remains out of consideration for our market. Though to this writer that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because the turbodiesel Sportage GT continues to be quite the pairing.