2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid: Everything we know as of May 2022

The U.S.-spec 2023 Kia Sportage, the fifth generation of Kia’s compact SUV, is here. Unlike past Sportage generations, but just like its platform-mate, the U.S.-spec all-new Hyundai Tucson, it is available in a hybrid variant. Take a look at what we know so far about the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid for the U.S. market:

Background

Kia first introduced the Sportage as a concept in 1991 (Kia Urban SUV concept) and then launched the production version in 1993. The compact crossover SUV hit the five million sales milestone in the fourth generation in 2018. Since its launch in 1993, Kia has sold well over six million units of Sportage worldwide.

While Sportage is the best-selling Kia model globally, its fifth generation could add a few million units to the tally as demand for the crossover SUV model peaks worldwide.

Design

2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid front
The 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid features a dynamic design and looks bolder than the outgoing model, which wasn’t a big step up from its predecessor. Image Source: Kia

The 2023 Sportage Hybrid incorporates Kia’s ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy. Kia says that Opposites United consists of five pillars: Power to Progress, Tension for Serenity, Joy for Reason, Technology for Life, and Bold for Nature. The last pillar has influenced the design creation to a great extent. The company’s designers in South Korea, the U.S., Germany, and China contributed to shaping the all-new Sportage.

Kia has designed the new Sportage with a familiar silhouette but used aggressive and technical-looking elements. Except for the unique 17- or 18-inch wheels and the HEV badging, the Sportage Hybrid variant looks the same as the gasoline Sportage.

At the front, the hybrid compact SUV lets go of the bug-eyed look. Sharp, vertically positioned Matrix LED headlamps with boomerang-shaped LED DRL and a significantly larger, sharper, and black radiator grille spans the entire face width for a dominating look.

Source: Youtube/Kia America

With crisp character lines, muscular shoulder lines, and a reimagined greenhouse, the 2023 Sportage Hybrid looks noticeably different. A noteworthy change is the conventionally designed rear door frame, making the profile look more attractive. For the first time in a Sportage, Kia now offers an option to get the roof painted with a different body color for a two-tone exterior.

The new Sportage Hybrid features what one can only describe as a quirky front end, but the rear is more or less conventional. It comes with razor-sharp LED rear combination lamps, an arching indent where the registration plate sits, and a large Kia logo right above. The bumper houses symmetrical secondary lights.

2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid rear three quarter
Powerful broad shoulders and the slim, light horizontal strip connecting the razor-sharp tail lamps emphasize the width of the 2023 Sportage Hybrid. Image Source: Kia

Interior

The U.S.-spec 2023 Sportage hybrid is available in LX, EX, and SX-Prestige trims. It features a thoroughly upgraded interior with a striking dual-screen cockpit, sleeker dashboard design, and a center console with reduced physical buttons. Overall, the interior is a big step up from the previous generation model.

The top-end 2023 Kia Sportage gets a curved panel that seamlessly merges a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment display, covering more than half of the width. The panoramic curved display, which Kia says is the “nucleus” of the all-new Sportage’s cabin, reduces distortion caused by viewing angles. It makes it easier to recognize information and minimizes driver distraction.

There’s a new touchpad with climate and audio controls beneath the infotainment system. A 360-degree Surround-View Monitor with a 3D view is available for the first time in a Sportage. Multi-connection Bluetooth, included in EX and SX-Prestige trims, allows keeping two smartphones paired simultaneously. Customers can save their profile and store climate and infotainment preferences, and in the EX trim, even the phone connection pairings. Wireless charging and a Harman-Kardon premium audio system are among the other available interior features.

2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid interior dashboard
The 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid features a minimalist interior that will apply to the hybrid variants. Image Source: Kia

Slim vertical air vents hug the two screens of the driver’s cockpit. The center console also carries a more upscale design, and it houses a shift-by-wire transmission dial instead of a conventional lever.

The floor console of the 2023 Kia Sportage has a high-end gloss finish, and it provides storage space, cupholders, and soft-touch switches, with the latter positioned alongside the transmission dial. The front seats sport a slim shell design, and their headrests integrate hanger-type designs, which allows for hooking clothing and handbags.

Kia has included many new smart features in the 2023 Sportage. Kia Connect, a suite of connected car services, allows connecting the vehicle to smart home devices like lights and air conditioners. Amazon Alexa/Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker/smart device integration, cloud-based navigation route calculation, and stolen vehicle tracking and immobilization are some of the highlights of Kia Connect.

Dimensions

Kia has developed the fifth-gen Sportage on its new N3 architecture. This is the company’s first model available in short-wheelbase and long-wheelbase versions depending on the market. We expect Kia to sell the Sportage long-wheelbase in most regions worldwide, places where customers demand space.

The U.S.-spec 2023 Sportage is the long-wheelbase version, which is 7.1 inches longer than the previous model, and its wheelbase is 3.4 inches longer. The all-new model is also half-inch taller and wider. Kia claims best-in-class rear legroom of 41.3 inches and best-in-class cargo capacity behind the rear seats of 39.5 cubic feet.

Aspect2023 Sportage HEV Dimension
Length183.5 in.
Width73.4 in.
Height (w/o roof rails)65.4 in./66.1 in.
Height (with roof rails)65.6 in./66.3 in.
Wheelbase108.5 in.
Cargo Space39.5 cu. ft.
2023 Kia Sportage dimensions

Powertrain

The U.S.-spec 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid debuted at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Its powertrain combines a 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline engine (177 hp/195 lb.-ft.) with a 44.2 kW (59.3 hp)/195 lb.-ft. electric motor, and it produces a total power of 227 hp. The new Sportage Hybrid features a new ‘E-Handling’ system for improved agility and stability during cornering.

Power goes to either the front wheels or an active AWD system. AWD is optional in the LX trim and standard in EX and SX-Prestige trims. A six-speed automatic transmission with a rotary-style shifter and paddle shifters is standard in the hybrid variant. The driver can select from four drive modes: Eco, Sport, Smart, and Snow (AWD-only). A 1.49 kWh battery pack stores the energy for the electrical assist functions.

Kia claims that the U.S.-spec Sportage Hybrid offers a class-leading 2,000 lb towing capacity. The EPA-est. fuel economy rating of the hybrid SUV is 42 mpg (city)/44 mpg (highway)/43 mpg (combined) in the FWD configuration and 38 mpg (city, highway, & combined) in the AWD configuration.

2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid Specifications

AspectSpecification
Engine Type1.6 Turbo Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engine
Displacement (cc)1,598 cc
Bore x stroke (mm)75.6 x 89
ConfigurationInline 4-cylinder
Compression Ratio10.5:1
Max. power (hp @ rpm)177 hp @ 5,500 rpm
Max. torque (lb-ft @ rpm)195 lb.-ft. @ 1,500-4,500 rpm
BlockAluminum
HeadAluminum
Oil-panSteel
Valve system16V DOHC CVVT with Hydraulic Lash Adjuster
Fuel Injection Direct Injection
Fuel requirementRegular Unleaded (87 or higher)
Coolant Capacity (L)4.8 L
Emission Control SystemWCC + UCC
Fuel tank capacity13.7 gal.
Hybrid Starter Generator
TypePermanent Magnet Synchronous Motor
Power (hp)17.4 hp
Torque (lb-ft)31.9 lb-ft
Electric Motor
TypePermanent Magnet Synchronous Motor
Power (hp)59.3 hp @ 1,600 – 2,000 rpm
Torque (lb-ft)195 lb-ft @ 0 – 2,100 rpm 
Electrical SystemHEV
Hybrid Battery System typeLithium-ion (Pouch)
Voltage270 V
Capacity5.5 Ah
Energy1.49 kWh
Power64.0 kW
Weight (kg.)37.5 kg
Weight (lbs.)82.7 lbs
Towing Capacity
Braked Towing Capacity2,000 lbs.
Unbraked Towing Capacity1,653 lbs.
EPA-est. Fuel Economy
FWD42 mpg (city)/44 mpg (highway)/43 mpg (combined)
AWD38 mpg (city, highway, & combined)
2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid specifications (U.S. market)

Safety

Kia says that it has improved the safety of the Sportage with a reinforced body structure. The company has confirmed the following standard safety systems for its fifth generation:

  • Driver Attention Warning (DAW)
  • Lane Following Assist (LFA)
  • Lane Keeping Assist (LKA)
  • Forward Collision Avoidance (FCA) with Cyclist detection
  • Rear Occupant Alert (ROA)
  • Backup camera
  • Rear parking sensors
  • High Beam Assist (HBA)

Many ADAS features are available as an option on the 2023 Sportage Hybrid:

  • Blind Spot View Monitor (BVM)
  • Blind Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA)
  • Blind Spot Collision Avoidance (BCA) with Parallel Exit
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance-Assist (RCCA)
  • Forward Collision Avoidance (FCA) with Junction Turning capability
  • Front parking sensors
  • Highway Driving Assist (HDA)
  • Intelligent Speed Limit Assist (ISLA)
  • Highway Driving Assist (HDA)
  • Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with Stop and Go
  • Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control-Curve (NSCC-C)
  • Reverse Parking Collision Avoidance (PCA-R) with pedestrian detection
  • Safe Exit Warning (SEW)

Price

Prices of the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid in the U.S. start at USD 27,990 and go up to USD 36,190, excluding a standard USD 1,255 destination charge. Sales will commence this spring.

Configuration2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid Price*
Sportage Hybrid LX FWDUSD 27,290
Sportage Hybrid LX AWDUSD 29,090
Sportage Hybrid EX AWDUSD 30,990
Sportage Hybrid SX-PrestigeUSD 36,190
2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid U.S. prices*

*Excluding USD 1,255 destination charge

2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid FAQs

What is the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid release date?

Kia will launch the all-new Sportage Hybrid in the U.S. in spring 2022.

What is the 2023 Kia Sportage hybrid price?

The 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid price in the U.S. starts at USD 27,290.

What are the potential Kia Sportage Hybrid alternatives?

The 2022 Hyundai Tucson and Toyota RAV4 Hybrid are options for those who seek alternatives.

Featured Image Source: Kia