Rolling around town in the Signal Red Kia Sportage EX 2011 through the streets of Los Angeles was a showstopper. I kept getting compliments on the Sportage all week long. People were curious about the brand of the car, the miles per gallon, and if the car was affordable, but what most people first noticed was its signal red color and the unique body shape. It’s definitely gonna be a hot summer if you’re rolling around in the Sportage EX; let me tell you why.
Why Drive a Kia Sportage EX 2011?
There are three main reasons why the Sportage EX is a must have: 1) the price point of this fully loaded baby with all the bells and whistles is $29,990.00. Without the optional packages of navigation and premium interior upgrades, it would range at $24,795.00. It’s often compared to the Toyota RAV4 and the Honda CRV, but Kia is bringing the heat with the Sportage with a lower price point than both the Toyota and Honda models. The gas mileage on the Sportage EX is 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. 2) The safety features that have been implemented throughout the Sportage EX are amazing. From smart placement of the airbags to seat belts to even the anti-lock brake systems and downhill brake/hill-start assist control, it has been engineered to protect the driver and its passengers. 3) The body style and look of the Sportage is real clean. It’s a youthful crossover vehicle with grown and sexy interior and exterior features that will have heads turning while driving.
What’s Good Under the Hood?
The Sportage EX comes fully loaded with 2.4 Liter 16 Valve DOHC with CVVT (Continuously Variable Valve Timing). It has all-wheel drive with locking center differential tires. What that means is that when you step on the gas, all tires have the power to move instead of just the front wheels moving as a front-wheel drive car would do. The engine power is rated at 176 horsepower at 6,000 RPM (revolutions per minute) with 168 ft-lbs at 4,000 rpm of ground pounding torque. For a mini crossover SUV, that’s a lot of power in the engine. With this engine, The Sportage Ex can handle a family of five with no problem.
How’s the Interior?
The interior of the Sportage EX comes with a full-blown $3,000 premium package with leather included. This package is optional; It includes leather seat trim, heated front seats, air-cooled drivers seat, push button start with smart key, a panoramic sunroof, rear sonar, auto-dimming rear-view mirror with HomeLink, heated outside mirrors, and last but not least, a cargo cover. Another optional package that you can also include is a $1,500 navigation with premium audio. Because I love music, I’m all about the sound in the vehicle. The Sportage also includes navigation with SIRIUS satellite traffic and camera display so when you’re backing this big sexy up, you can see what’s behind you. Now, for those of you that haven’t experienced a back-up camera, its definitely a must for all you ladies out there who have a hard time backing your vehicle up.
Driving the Sportage EX model was definitely plush in many ways. The convenient control features on the power steering wheel was a plus. Once your mobile device is connected via Bluetooth, you can make and receive calls and it’s all conveniently on your steering wheel as well as your touch screen infotainment system. You’ve got AM/FM/CD/MP3 with six audio speakers laced throughout the interior, SIRIUS satellite radio with USB, and auxiliary outputs for your iPod and MP3 players. My favorite feature was when I was able to sync my iPhone to the system and play music from YouTube because of the Bluetooth wireless and streaming audio capabilities. I’m a music person and the audio package included gives me the freedom to play music from Pandora, my iPod, YouTube, and mp3 files sent to my email. Those are serious features for a lady and I definitely felt spoiled.
How’s the Exterior?
The exterior features are pretty straightforward. You’ve got LED daytime running lights with chrome door handles and accents throughout the exterior of the Sportage. The top of the Sportage has roof rails to pack all your summer gear on and there are fog lights and an auto-headlight system in the front.
So, when you’re rolling around in a car this summer and you want to upgrade to a crossover vehicle, think Kia Sportage 2011 because you can’t go wrong from the inside out and that’s WhatItDo!
Review By: Elizabeth Lavulo
*photos courtesy of Kia Motors
*YouTube video courtesy of Rantwick