Currently reading: New 2022 Kia Sportage to receive dramatic design overhaul
Fifth-generation SUV begins testing in Europe, hinting at new look and confirming hybrid option

The next-generation Kia Sportage SUV has been spotted testing in Europe for the first time, ahead of a likely unveiling in late 2021.

In its current form, the Sportage is Kia's best-selling model in the UK, coming second to the smaller Kia Niro this year only in September.

It's available in four trim levels with a choice of three engines: naturally aspirated and turbocharged versions of a 1.6-litre petrol and a newly introduced 1.6-litre mild-hybrid diesel.

It's unclear at this early stage whether all three engine options will be carried over to the fifth-generation Sportage when it goes on sale in 2022, but diesel still plays an important role in Kia's European line-up, so it's likely to continue. 

Any petrol options will likely be electrified, too, but there's no word on whether the Sportage will follow the larger Sorento in gaining a plug-in hybrid powertrain.

This test mule has an electrified powertrain of some sort, as revealed by the legally mandated yellow sticker at the rear.

Earlier this year, Kia detailed its strategy to launch 11 new electric vehicles by the end of 2025, among which will be a new crossover with performance-inspired styling and a range of more than 310 miles. That's unlikely to bear the Sportage badge, however, being geared more towards offering an engaging and premium driving experience. 

Despite the camouflage, this prototype hints at a radical styling evolution for the Sportage, comparable with the dramatic difference between the second- and third-generation models. 

A new design for the leading edge of the bonnet suggests heavy influence from the new Sorento, which wears the latest iteration of Kia's 'tiger nose' grille, while the headlights appear to sit lower and the front splitter to protrude further than before.

Revisions to the side and rear will be equally extensive, with a reshaped roofline curving down towards a completely new boot lid design, topped by a prominent spoiler.

Camouflage covers most of the rear-light design, so it's unclear whether the Sportage will adopt the Telluride-inspired vertical design seen on the Sorento or retain its wraparound light bar.


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Felix Page

Felix Page
Title: News and features editor

Felix is Autocar's news editor, responsible for leading the brand's agenda-shaping coverage across all facets of the global automotive industry - both in print and online.

He has interviewed the most powerful and widely respected people in motoring, covered the reveals and launches of today's most important cars, and broken some of the biggest automotive stories of the last few years. 

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Jaguar_E-Type 14 November 2020


Looks like it might have big grill, split headlights and a sort of coupe arse. Hard to be sure though especially throught that camouflage.

catnip 14 November 2020

Kia do need to inject some

Kia do need to inject some excitement into the styling of the next Sportage, the current one is very bland and stodgy compared to the previous model.

FastRenaultFan 13 November 2020

Hard to make out anything through all that comaflage

But have seen some renders online alright.
I hope its stylish, radical and clever with a high quality interior.
The new Nisssn Qushqui on the other hand if it turns out the way Autocar has it looks boring.