Particularly efficient in town, is the hybrid car also efficient on a long journey? During a “road trip” between Paris and Monaco, we were able to take control of the new hybrid Kia Sportage.
While the registrations of petrol and diesel cars are collapsing, the hybrid is establishing itself with the electric as a real trend in the automotive market, now representing 20% of new vehicle sales. Praised in urban areas, is hybrid technology also relevant on a long journey where the electric motor is less in demand? To find out, we took the wheel of the new Kia Sportage hybrid in the top-of-the-range GT Line finish for a “road trip” between Paris and the Principality of Monaco.
The new Kia Sportage in terms of style: a revolution!
Forget the very consensual lines of the previous generation. Like the rest of the Korean brand’s models, the Sportage is undergoing a revolution. Aesthetically, the changes are radical. Completely redesigned, the front end is characterized by an enlarged grille incorporating the brand’s new logo and surrounded by boomerang lights. Ditto at the rear with shapes that are reminiscent of the Kia EV6, recently voted car of the year 2022. Very divisive aesthetic choices that are reminiscent of those made by Toyota a few years ago. At a time when design is the first criterion for car purchases, the Korean crossover plays on emotion. We like it or we don’t like it, but we don’t remain indifferent.
In terms of size, the Korean crossover gains a few centimeters compared to its predecessor and now extends over 4.52 m in length. A way to get closer to the Peugeot 3008 and the Ford Kuga, the two European references in the segment.
Inside, the layout is largely inspired by that introduced with the Kia EV6. There are thus two 12.3″ screens which, placed side by side, seem to form a single, slightly curved slab. At the level of the on-board computer, the design of the various menus has been reworked. The whole is rather fluid and the navigation correct. We will still end up preferring to connect our smartphone to access applications like Waze or Google Maps, which are always more pleasant to use over long distances.
The choice of hybridization
100% electrified, the new Sportage engine range extends from mild-hybrid to plug-in hybrid. For this first long-distance test, it is the “full hybrid” core version that we have in hand.
Accumulating 230 horsepower, it combines a 180 horsepower 1.6 l T-GDi petrol engine with a 60 horsepower electric unit. Accumulating 1.49 kWh of energy capacity, the battery operates on a permanent charge and discharge cycle. A configuration that allows the electric mode to intervene on a regular basis, especially in town where the deceleration and braking phases facilitate the recharging of the battery.
Between Paris and Monaco
For this long-distance test, we are embarking on a road trip between Paris and Monaco where the 17th edition of the EVER show was organized. An epicurean journey which, between national roads and motorways, led us to discover sometimes unusual places such as the Croix de Molphey service station which, run by a fan of Johnny and old American cars, takes us back to the 1960s.
When it comes to driving, this new Sportage is a real saloon. Rather comfortable despite its somewhat firm suspensions, the Korean crossover also benefits from the electric motor which brings its total theoretical power to 230 horsepower. Without being dazzling with regard to the announced power, the accelerations remain sufficient for overtaking.
Well soundproofed, it also offers a whole range of driving aids. Everything falls quite easily to hand thanks to the controls cleverly placed on the right side of the steering wheel. However, it will be necessary to pay attention to the chosen finish. While Lane Keeping Aid, Traffic Jam Assist, Sign Recognition and Cruise Control are part of the standard equipment, others are reserved for our top-of-the-range GT Line finish. Premium. This is particularly the case for the adaptive cruise control and the blind spot display system. Quite practical, it displays the rear side view of the vehicle in real time in the dashboard. A device that we had already been able to experience during our test of the Kia Sorento plug-in hybrid.
Fuel consumption: 6.4 l/100 km
When we arrived in Monaco, our overall consumption balance was 6.4 l/100 km. A correct value for this beautiful baby of 1.7 tons which remains in the nails of the figures put forward by the WLTP cycle. Of course, the Sportage isn’t the most frugal of hybrid cars. The Toyota Auris and the Hyundai Ioniq will do better, but we don’t play in the same league when it comes to roominess. This is precisely where the Kia model comes out on top. While most hybrids sacrifice part of their trunk because of the battery, the Sportage hybrid announces a volume of 587 liters, in the high average of the segment. . Added to this is a towing capacity of up to 1,650 kilos.
On the price side, the Korean SUV is also well placed. Sold from 37,490 euros in its basic Active version, it is more accessible than the Ford Kuga hybrid, offered from 40,650 €. Designed on identical mechanics, the Hyundai Tucson hybrid does better, however, with a basic version billed from €32,950.
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter