This is the 2nd Kia I have owned, and I my 2nd positive review for this company.
I bought my Kia brand new in 2006 with about 16 miles on the odometer.
I currently have about 60K on this vehicle and it is still running beautifully.
No major problems, decent gas mileage and plenty of room for my husband, two kids and 90-pound labrador retriever.
With the 5-speed manual transmission, we don't seem to have the power issues that have been mentioned in previous reviews.
Cruise control with a manual transmission; multiple 'plugs' for my kids to plug in a portable DVD player or charge their hand held video games; decent gas mileage.
How about making a hybrid version of the Sportage?
This was a great mid$ car. Was totaled in crash, and all crumple zones and air bags saved me! Never had any issues with this car. Owned it from 47k to 74k miles. Btw, I paid $9500, and after 14 months, ins paid $8300. Book value went UP even with 27k more miles on it. Avg. 24 mpg mostly freeway. For you gear heads, there is about a 1400 rpm drop between gears. 3800 rpm in 5th gets you about 72 mph on flats. You'll need to drop 1 on hills. Great car for the $.
Well i guess that would be all the airbags, front and side. This car is what it is, nothing to brag about, but also nothing to be ashamed of.
Manual trans. could use a 6th gear for freeway driving. Think it could get 28+mpg with a 6th. Bad antenna design. Only got a few least fav stations and no AM.
I'd loved my old compact/"cute" 1999 Kia Sportage...despite its simplistic interior and "quirks". However, it was time to upgrade, and my 5 speed, 2006 Sportage is great! Its one of the few 4X4 manual transmission SUVs still available, since many companies seem to be opting out in favor of automatic transmissions. Since I really wanted an actual stick-shift...with a clutch (not a "sport-matic" shift) this car was/is the one for me. It's still only a 4 cylinder engine, but it's powerful enough for everyday usage, and it's kind to the environment...and to my wallet (since gasoline costs seem to only get more expensive)! It maneuvers easily, brakes smoothly, and doesn't dent when leaned upon. :)
My favorite features include: the non-optional power windows/locks, cruise control, map-reading lights, AM/FM/CD radio, door lights, flip-open rear window, reclining rear passenger seats, and feeling secure in a really safe and comfortable ride (without spending a huge amount of cash to attain it).
Suggested improvements would be to actually make this manual transmission model available in a 6 cylinder engine, with a combination CD/cassette radio, and also to make the anti-theft device available (with the keyless entry) in this model. Finally, crossbars should also be included on the roof rack.
I really love my Sportage. We bought it back in January and have not been disappointed. We had an opportunity to buy the 4wd and air conditioning, but choose to stick with the base model. I wouldn't mind having those extras, but I really don't need them. I would rather save a few thousand dollars. The only thing that is a little strange is the air vent; in the summer it is quite warm, even warmer than the outside air. I think it must travel past the engine and get warmed up that way.
It doesn't feel cheap, inside and out. It is really well designed.