2016 Kia Sportage spotted ahead of Frankfurt debut


2016 Kia Sportage spotted ahead of Frankfurt debut

The next-generation Kia Sportage has again been spotted testing prior to its global debut at the Frankfurt motor show in September, with these latest pictures showing the car's redesigned front end.

New air intakes can be seen in the car's front bumper, a signficiant departure from the current car's styling. It's already known the new Sportage will take styling inspiration from2014's KX3 concept.

Other styling features include Kia's large 'Tiger Nose' grille, while the car's headlights also appear to have been redesigned. At the rear, the Sportage gets new tail light designs and is expected to receive a re-profiled rear bumper.

Kia's SUV will move upmarket to fight rivals includingtheNissan Qashqai,Honda CR-VandFord Kuga, with the most obvious area of improvement being its cabin. These spy images show the car's cockpit for the first time, revealing its redesigned centre console. Kia is also expected to fit a larger central infotainment screen, as well as using more high-quality materials inside - thus addressing one of our main criticisms of the current Sportage.

Under the bonnet, Kia has only confirmed that a new powertrain will be offered in the Sportage. This is unlikely to be a plug-in hybrid model, but could allude to either a pure EV version (along the lines of the Soul EV) or to a downsized three-cylinder motor. Elsewhere, expect the current 1.6-litre petrol and 1.7 and 2.0-litre diesel options to be refined, increasing fuel economy and reducing emissions.

The new Kia Sportage is scheduled to come to market early in 2016. Ahead of the new model going on sale, Kia has released a special run-out model, dubbed the Axis edition.

On sale this month and limited to just 1200 units, the Axis edition is priced from 20,995 and is geared toward business buyers, offering "many of the features of a high-grade Sportage for a mid-range price."Features of the Axis edition include LED lighting, a black leather interior and heated seats.

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