In June of 2021, the all-new Kia Sportage made its global debut. It showcased Kia’s new design language for its cars featuring a much sharper and more aggressive look than before along with the brand’s new logo. Now, the new crossover is set to make its European debut but with a slight twist as it is going to be made available as a short-wheelbase model.
As far as its looks go it’s pretty much the same as the regular longer wheelbase version of the South Korean crossover. However, it is important to note that this model will be part of Kia’s GT-Line of vehicles hence this crossover will come with much sportier looks compared to the regular model. This gives it a new front grille that now has a hexagonal pattern and a new front bumper that features a new layout and a new position for its adaptive cruise control radar.
Most importantly, since this is the short wheelbase model of the Kia Sportage, some tweaks have been made to its design. While it may take a keen eye to spot these changes, these can be seen on the vehicle’s shorter rear doors, smaller rear quarter panel, and a missing rear window in what would have been located in between the C and D pillars. Since it rides on a shorter wheelbase its dimensions have also been adapted to fit into it.
The European Sportage now rides on a 2,680 mm wheelbase versus the 2,755 mm that it rides on for the global model. This represents a squish of about 75 mm which may not seem like a lot but is enough to reflect on its design. The overall length of the crossover has also been shortened down to 4,515 mm which makes it shorter by 145 mm or 5.7-inches compared to the global model.
Aside from these changes to the chassis and exterior, the vehicle remains the same on the inside. It still carries the same dashboard and cabin layout along with its host of features. There is no word yet as to when Kia Philippines plans to bring in the new model or if the new Sportage will be made available locally in its short-wheelbase form. For now, it's a waiting game to see what the South Korean automaker has in store for its new crossover.
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