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5 ⁄ 5 stars
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2005 Kia Sportage Overview
Overall User Score
Based on 1 review
What a difference a little vacation can make. We all take a few days or months off to refresh, rejuvenate, and reinvigorate, and Kia decided to do the same with its iconic compact Sportage SUV. Off the market for two years while the Sorento took center stage, the 2005 Sportage returns with a less rugged look, more power, more features, and a longer wheelbase, which increases passenger and cargo room and improves overall stability.
Now on a unibody, car-like platform it shares with the Tuscon, the 2005 Sportage is available in LX and more upscale EX trims. Both come with either two-wheel or 4-wheel drive. Though ground clearance helps with off-roading, the 4WD is meant more for rough weather conditions than outdoors adventure traveling. A new 2.0-liter, 140-hp I4 engine is offered in the LX, with an option for a new 2.7-liter, 173-hp V6, which is standard in the EX. The V6 engines get a 4-speed Sportmatic with manual mode, while the I4s have a choice of this or the standard 5-speed manual. What's impressive about the 2005 Sportage compared to its competitors is standard ABS brakes, traction and stability control, and dual front, side, and side curtain airbags (6 in all), which aren't always offered in other compact SUVs.
Rear seats split-fold and stow flat into the floor, and the front passenger seat also folds flat for longer objects. Thoughtful additions, like a rear window that opens separately from the liftgate, a grocery bag hook in the front passenger well, and reclining seats in both rows add comfort and convenience to the Sportage. The LX comes with full power features, while the EX adds a sunroof, remote entry, cruise control, and a cargo cover. Heated leather seats are optional.
Though drivers wish the 2005 Sportage had a bit more power and better gas mileage, the improvements have drawn in a lot of fans, who love the extra passenger and cargo room and the overall style. Improved handling makes the Sportage peppy in the city. Owners also say the fold-flat seats are easy to operate.