It was the first Kia model to be built in Europe, has been the best-seller in the UK for the past six years, and is currently tenth in the UK sales charts for 2018. But most importantly, it’s celebrating its 25th birthday, in the same year that the five millionth example rolled off the production lines. Yes, it’s the multi-award-winning Kia Sportage, a vehicle that has recently been updated with fresh exterior and interior design, with new safety and infotainment technologies, as well as efficient new powertrains and cutting-edge EcoDynamics+ 48-volt mild hybrid technology.
And it’s in good company, as it’s party time for its big brother, the Kia Sorento, as it celebrates its 15th birthday in the UK, with more than 50,000 examples delivered to customers. A sure-fire hit with off-road fans and caravanners, the biggest vehicle in the range changed the way the world saw Kia. Buyers fell in love with the large SUV thanks to the combination of its affordability, rugged no-nonsense four-wheel-drive system, spacious cabin, and generous towing capacity. It was able to take on established players at a much lower price level, with a high specification, strong drivetrain, good looks and the ability to tow a load of up to 3,000kgs.
“The Sportage has a rich history, is multi-award-winning and is the biggest-selling Kia in the UK,” said Paul Philpott, President & CEO Kia Motors UK, and adding “The Sorento really put Kia on the map when it was launched back in 2003, and altered the way that people perceived the brand. 15 years on, our flagship SUV is still challenging perceptions.”
To celebrate 25 years of the Kia Sportage, a special ‘Edition 25’ grade is now available, paired exclusively with the 130bhp 1.6-litre GDi engine with 6-speed manual transmission. Priced at £25,655, equipment highlights include 17-inch alloy wheels, black cloth and leather upholstery and premium paint, as well as an 8-speaker JBL® premium sound system with sub-woofer, external amp and front centre speaker, an 8.0-inch touchscreen satellite navigation system and Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlayTM smartphone compatibility. In addition, there’s Kia’s Smart Entry system, heated front and outer rear seats, heated steering wheel, LED-bi function headlights with adaptive lighting system, LED rear lights, front and rear parking sensors and a 360-degree Around View Monitor with Reversing Camera System. Safety is taken care of thanks to Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, including pedestrian monitoring, as well as Driver Attention Warning System, Speed Limit Information Function, High Beam Assist, Lane Keep Assist System and Blind-Spot Collision Warning.