Kia has introduced a new mild hybrid diesel model, the Sportage Ecodynamics+, which has arrived as part of a mid-life model facelift that will reach UK showrooms in the summer.
The electrified five-seat SUV is equipped with 48-volt electrical architecture with a starter-generator unit. This system, which uses a 0.46kWh 48V lithium ion battery, will eventually make its way into other Kia models.
Kia says the starter-generator unit can seamlessly switch from providing up to 13bhp of assistance via a belt that drives the crankshaft to recuperating energy from engine braking. It comes with the 2.0-litre diesel engine, which produces 132bhp on its own.
The Sportage"s Ecodynamics+ powertrain also permits the use of a smaller and lighter 12V battery to power the car’s ancillaries. In addition, it uses selective catalytic reduction active emissions control technology, which helps to lower its average CO2 output by 4%, as measured using the new WLTP tests.
The new mild hybrid diesel will sit at the top of the engine range. Below it is a new 1.6-litre CRDi diesel that replaces the previous 1.7-litre unit. The new engine comes in two power outputs, 113bhp and 134bhp, with the latter available with all-wheel drive.
Of the petrol engines, the existing 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol is retained and Kia will add a new petrol mild hybrid powertrain in the future. The addition of this second electrified Sportage version will, along with the new diesel, come as part of 16 new advanced-powertrain Kias that are due by 2025, including a Niro EV that"s due later this year.
Along with its new powertrains, the 2018 Sportage also has tweaked lighting details at the front and rear, as well as different bumpers and new wheels of 17 to 19in diameters. The range is topped by a GT variant that gets LED fog lamps and sportier details.
Inside, the updated Sportage comes with a 7.0in touchscreen infotainment system as standard with an 8.0in system available as an option. Smart cruise control that can bring the car to a halt or pull away in traffic is also available, as is a 360-degree camera display on the infotainment screen.
Kia will announce pricing and further details for its revamped Sportage range when it is launched later this year, although no major change is expected from the outgoing version"s £18,810 starting figure.
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