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Kia sportage 2011

A new body, new engine options and fresh, bold styling – that’s the new Kia Sportage coming to South Africa soon.

The SUV is longer, wider and lower than the previous model, but retains its commanding driving position and solid handling.

Kia's chief design officer Peter Schreyer, who was formerly the man responsible for creating Audi's beautiful shapes, is responsible for this third-generation of the Sportage.

The new models are available with three engines - two petrol and one diesel, covering a 122kW to 130kW power spread - with a choice of manual or automatic transmissions and two-wheel or all-wheel drive.

New safety features include electronic stability control, hill-start assist, downhill brake control and a rollover sensor that deploys the side and curtain crash bags and seatbelt pretensioners when required.

A new rear-view safety camera, which transmits an image to an LCD colour display integrated into the interior rear-view mirror, is standard on all AWD models.

The new car marks a dramatic shift in design direction for Kia's compact SUV. It retains Peter Schreyer’s striking signature 'tiger' grille design but has a fresh and bold look.

The key design element is the relationship between its high shoulders and narrow glasshouse, explains Schreyer. "We've created a car with a sports car-like ratio between sheet metal and glass. The side-windows are very narrow which gives you an almost rally-car feeling.

"Follow the shoulder and roof lines and they meet at the striking reverse-angled C-pillar. The size, the shape and the proportion of the C-pillar on any car is absolutely crucial to its appearance," says Schreyer. "And as you can see on our new Sportage, it determines the entire look and feel of the car."

The new model will be available in nine colours, including two new metallic colours.

The longer bodyshell and longer wheelbase, plus the extra cabin width ensure that occupants of the new Sportage will enjoy a spacious cabin. The adoption of a reverse-angle for the C-pillar moves it 186mm further back (compared with the previous model), placing it behind the rear seat passengers to provide them with a an unrestricted view.

Air-conditioning is standard on the Ignite, while all other 2WD and AWD models have dual climate control as standard.

The boot is 80mm longer and 110mm wider at floor level. Cargo capacity is among the best in class and ranges from 740 litres to 1547 litres with the back row folded.

Kia says the car is significantly than its predecessor because of greater use of high tensile steel for a stiffer and safer vehicle. The company says it has invested heavily in programmes to enhancing active and passive safety levels, to “ensure that owning and driving Kia’s latest compact SUV will be a safe and rewarding experience for all occupants”.

Active safety technologies include electronic stability control, and two new systems – hillstart assist control and downhill brake control.

Two active systems are available to assist drivers with reversing manoeuvres. The rear park assist system helps the driver to avoid contact with pedestrians by triggering an audible warning whenever the vehicle approaches an obstruction.

An improved rear-view camera mounted on the tailgate, is standard on the AWD package. This camera is fitted with a 130-degree, wide-angle lens which transmits images to an LCD display set within the interior rear-view mirror.

Structural improvements include stronger and straighter longitudinal side members in the engine bay floor, an enhanced B-Pillar design that links to upper and lower cross-members to form an internal rollover hoop, reinforced floor members in the trunk floor and a rerouted and better protected fuel filler pipe.

The new Sportage comes standard with six crash bags – dual front crash bags, dual front side crash bags and full-length side curtain crash bags. Active headrestraints for the front seats protect occupants against whiplash injuries.

Retail prices will be released at a later date.

source: motoring.iafrica

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