1999 Kia Sportage Review

Pros & Cons

  • Both the convertible and four-door models offer excellent standard features for a low price.
  • Not quite as capable off-road as the comparably priced Toyota RAV4.
List Price Estimate
$841 - $1,780

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Vehicle overview

Part owned by Ford and Mazda before Hyundai acquired the company, Kia relies heavily on resources from all three companies as it struggles to its feet in a tough marketplace. The Sportage is the product of collaboration between Kia, Ford, Mazda and suspension-tuning guru Lotus. Designed from the start as a sport utility, the Sportage sports tough ladder frame construction, shift-on-the-fly four-wheel drive, and a Mazda-based 2.0-liter engine that makes 130 horsepower and 127 pound-feet of torque.

Two trim levels are available: base and EX. Base models are well-trimmed, including power windows, split-folding rear seats, a remote fuel door release, power mirrors, a rear defroster and air conditioning. Optional equipment includes four-wheel antilock brakes, leather interior, cruise control and an automatic transmission.

A wide variety of colors are available on the Sportage models, a few of which appear to have originated from the minds of the folks currently in charge of painting Hot Wheels cars. The look is rugged yet cute; perfect for family duty in the 'burbs. Off-road, we found the Sportage confidence inspiring, but it didn't feel as tight as a Toyota RAV4 or Honda CR-V.

For most owners, that won't matter. Few SUVs actually leave the pavement, and on the pavement is where the Sportage shines. Lotus engineers worked wonders here, and the Sportage is stable and comfortable. In the four-door model, the seating position is high and upright, visibility is outstanding, and the layout of the dashboard and controls makes the Sportage easy to manipulate. Rear seat riders enjoy lots of room and support, afforded by "stadium style" elevated seating. The convertible offers an easy-folding soft-top and a full-size spare tire mounted in an outside carrier. From the driver's seat, the Sportage looks and feels much more substantial than its low price would lead you to believe.

For young families and active singles looking to get into a sport-ute without getting into financial servitude, the Sportage is worth a look.

1999 Highlights

A new two-door convertible model joins the four-door Sportage in 1999. The convertible comes in either a 4x2 layout with automatic transmission or a 4x4 layout with five-speed manual transmission. It also boasts dual front airbags and a driver-side front knee bag.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 1999 Kia Sportage.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

1999 kia sportage
2dr SUV
I just had to post this to you people who are unfortunate enough to own a 99" kia you more than likely having problems. If your car is loosing power giving different codes one thing that really should be replaced is the throttle position sensor it for some odd reason this was never a code after replacing aic,coils,plugs,batteries, and fuel pump with no changes and then by accident I bumped the tps and voila the kia is a new car to drive. Good luck
Owner of a GREAT Sportage!
EX 4dr SUV 4WD
Purchased my 99 Sportage used in 2005 with 83k miles. Over the past 7+ years of ownership, I can honestly say this - most reliable car I have EVER owned! Only had a few maintenance issues (timing belt @ 125k miles plus gaskets, wires, belts and tires) Today I have 220k miles and still going strong. I will not get rid of it, absolutely a good car/suv and will definitely buy another KIA!
Former Kia Sportage Owner
4dr SUV
I owned a 1999 Kia Sportage for 18 months until I was hit by a drunk driver two months ago; the car was totaled. I purchased the car with 93,000 miles on it. My thoughts. Although my car was in the shop frequently, I chalked it up to the age of the car. 1.Alternator replaced. 2.Hose replaced leading from gas filler cap to the gas tank. 3.Fan Belts replaced. 4.Tires replaced. 5.Wire replaced under hood leading to starter. 6.A/C duct cleaned twice due to bad smell. 7.Stick shift knob replaced. 8.Electric motors to both rear windows replaced. $300.0 9.Valve cover gasket replaced along with other components $533.00 10.Engine service light was always on; mechanics couldn't fix it
4dr SUV
My 1999 Kia Sportage hasn't been anything except a total hassle since I bought it used 2 years ago. In the 2 years Ive owned the vehicle Ive had in out of the shop maybe 6 months the whole time. I just had a total overhaul done on it. They rebuilt the engine a new heater core break work YOU NAME IT and it has been done. The mechanic calls me today and tell me that its STILL sputtering and if its to the fuel pump then I am back to square one with this worthless vehicle. Ive put 5 grand into this car hoping everytime I WILL B REPAIRED and its yet to run correctly. I don't know when I will get it back on the roads if EVER.


IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1999 Kia Sportage

Used 1999 Kia Sportage Overview

The Used 1999 Kia Sportage is offered in the following submodels: Sportage SUV. Available styles include 2dr SUV, 4dr SUV, EX 4dr SUV, EX 4dr SUV 4WD, 4dr SUV 4WD, and 2dr SUV 4WD. Pre-owned Kia Sportage models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 130 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 1999 Kia Sportage comes with rear wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 4-speed automatic, 5-speed manual.

What's a good price on a Used 1999 Kia Sportage?

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Which used 1999 Kia Sportages are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 1999 Kia Sportage for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 1999 Kia Sportage.

Can't find a used 1999 Kia Sportages you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Kia Sportage for sale - 8 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $8,610.

Find a used Kia for sale - 5 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $23,295.

Find a used certified pre-owned Kia Sportage for sale - 4 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $18,277.

Find a used certified pre-owned Kia for sale - 2 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $12,881.

Should I lease or buy a 1999 Kia Sportage?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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