$17,703 - $25,004

2018 Kia Sportage Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 8.3

The 2018 Kia Sportage has one of the nicest interiors in the class. The cabin is quiet and looks upscale, and the materials would be right at home in a luxury vehicle. There are two rows of spacious, comfortable seats and plenty of available tech features. The cargo hold is smaller than many competitors’, but that’s about the only negative here.

  • "The materials wouldn't be out of place in a vehicle wearing Lexus badges; there's nary a hard surface anywhere, and the sporty perforated-leather seats, with heating and cooling, make the going more pleasant." -- Car and Driver (2017)
  • "The 2017 Sportage's interior is impressively executed. The dashboard has a substantial, upmarket look and includes a broad central control layout that tilts toward the driver, giving the cockpit a sporty character to match the name. Materials quality is class-competitive, and we've noted no squeaks or rattles in our test vehicles to date." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • "Aside from spry acceleration, one notable trait about the latest Kia Sportage is its quiet cabin." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)

Seating

The Kia Sportage seats five and comes standard with cloth upholstery. Leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, heated front seats, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, and a heated steering wheel are available.

The Sportage’s front seats are roomy and comfortable, and driver visibility is good. The rear seats are more spacious than in many competitors and have enough head- and legroom for tall passengers to ride comfortably. The rear seats also recline, which is a rare feature among compact SUVs.

The Sportage has two full sets of LATCH connectors for installing car seats. The system is easy to use overall, and the tether anchors are easy to find. However, the lower anchors are set a little too deep in the seat.

  • "We like the comfortable driver's seat, thoughtfully laid-out interior, and good outward visibility. Thoughtful features include cubbies and other storage spaces, and a 12-volt outlet and USB port for rear-seat passengers. The second row also gets heated outboard seats on some models, a nice complement to the good head- and legroom, and the fact that the seatbacks recline. There's an available panoramic sunroof, but it cuts into headroom." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Passenger space and comfort are outstanding for this size class. As expected in a crossover, the driver and front passenger have plenty of head- and legroom, and the available power seats include bottom cushions that tilt independently for additional customization. Rear occupants are hardly worse off, however. Even with a 6-footer in the driver seat, another 6-footer can sit immediately astern without issue, and he or she will enjoy ample thigh support. This level of accommodation is normally associated with midsize crossovers, so it's a welcome surprise in the compact Sportage." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • "What has improved, however, is visibility, thanks to thinner A- and C-pillars and more rear glass, which is a welcome change. ... Extending over the backseat was my favorite of the interior features — a massive panoramic moonroof. … When open, it lets in tons of light and air." -- Cars.com (2017)

Interior Features

Standard features in the 2018 Kia Sportage include a rearview camera and a 5-inch touch-screen infotainment system with six speakers, satellite radio, Bluetooth, and a USB port.

Available features include a panoramic sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, push-button start, remote keyless entry, Kia’s UVO infotainment system, a 7- or 8-inch touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a faster-charging USB port, navigation, HD Radio, a Harman Kardon audio system, cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, automatic high beams, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warning, lane change assist, and automatic pre-collision braking.

The Sportage is available with a lot of features – more than many class rivals offer. Handy smartphone connectivity features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are nice, but the available touch-screen infotainment systems are the highlight because they’re so easy to use. The touch screens respond quickly to inputs and are slightly angled toward the driver so they’re easier to see. There are physical controls for some audio and climate functions as well.

See 2018 Kia Sportage specs »

  • "In other words, the 2017 Sportage has pretty much all the gadgets we look for in modern cars. Best of all, Kia notes that its aggressive pricing strategy means several appealing options - heated seats, leather upholstery, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto - can be had for several thousands of dollars less than on rival crossovers." -- Automobile Magazine (2017)
  • "Control functions are easy to identify, and for those who find total touchscreen tyranny oppressive, the display is augmented by a bevy of secondary switches, buttons, and knobs. For its part, the 8.0-inch main screen, which is angled slightly toward the driver, is home to a navigation system that's more cooperative than many." -- Car and Driver (2017)
  • "Using the system was easy; the controls and menus are intuitive, it's easily reachable from both front seats, and the screen was responsive and predictable. I also remain a fan of Kia's canted center dashboard controls. … It makes things easier to see and access from the driver's seat without being so slanted that the passenger can't use it." -- Cars.com (2017)

Cargo

The Sportage has less cargo space than many class rivals, such as the Honda CR-V. With the rear seats up, you’ll have 30.7 cubic feet of space. Fold them down, and you have a maximum capacity of 60.1 cubic feet. However, the space you do have is plenty usable.

The rear seat folds completely flat, making it easy to load large or heavy items. There’s also a little extra space beneath the cargo floor, which lifts up. That lets you store some items out of sight or provides an extra couple inches for large objects to fit. A hands-free liftgate is available. It automatically opens if you stand next to the hatch with the key fob in your pocket.

  • By the numbers, at least, another 2017 Sportage shortcoming is its cargo capacity, which is … easily outdone by the RAV4's 73.3 cubes and the CR-V's 70.9. Still, you might find it more than adequate for your needs, and the Sportage is notably nose-to-tail shorter than both rivals, making it a bit more maneuverable in close quarters." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • The back seats recline at several angles and fold down easily, though there is no handle to fold them from the cargo area. The trunk floor even has two heights so owners can pick between a totally flat surface or gaining a few inches of extra height." -- Automobile Magazine (2017)
  • The increased size also expands the cargo hold behind the rear seats by five cubic feet, to 31, although the Sportage still trails key rivals—e.g., the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Mazda CX-5, Toyota RAV4—in this metric. However, the volume can be increased slightly with a new provision that allows users to lower the rear load floor by about three inches." -- Car and Driver (2017)

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