Next-gen crossover takes on more dynamic look

Kia’s next-generation Sportage has been spotted rocking a bold new design.

The new compact crossover is the corporate cousin to the redesigned Hyundai Tucson launched for 2022, and we should see it revealed later this year ahead of the start of sales sometime next year.

The Sportage will most likely be launched for the 2023 model year, as Kia has already announced that its current Sportage, on sale since the 2017 model year, carries over unchanged for 2022.

The prototype in our spy shots hints at a more rounded design for the Sportage compared to the latest Tucson, with elements like a clamshell hood up front and the pinched leading edge of the tailgate looking similar to what we see on Kia’s recently revealed EV6 electric crossover.

2022 Kia EV6

2022 Kia EV6

Unlike the EV6, the Sportage features a conventional grille. Expect it to be a frameless design spanning most of the front section, a design first introduced on the Cadenza-replacing K8 sedan sold overseas.

It isn’t clear what powertrains are planned but we can look to the latest Tucson for some clues. The Hyundai offers a 2.5-liter inline-4 with 187 hp as standard. It’s mated to an 8-speed automatic.

2023 Kia Sportage spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2023 Kia Sportage spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Above this is a pair of hybrids, one a plug-in hybrid. In both cases there’s a 1.6-liter turbocharged inline-4 mated to a single electric motor integrated with a 6-speed automatic. The regular hybrid setup is good for 226 hp while the plug-in hybrid setup is good for 261 hp. The plug-in hybrid also has a 13.8-kilowatt-hour battery that will deliver an estimated 32 miles of electric range.

The Tucson can also be ordered in sporty Tucson N Line guise. While it’s yet to be confirmed, we could see a similar model from Kia badged a GT-Line. Such a model would feature sporty styling touches inside and out.

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