First Look: 2011 Kia Sportage SX

By John Beltz Snyder

March 08, 2011

Kia has announced a new version of the 2011 Sportage crossover, the SX, which features a more powerful turbocharged engine.

The SX’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine employs a twin-scroll turbocharger to make 256 horsepower and 264 pound feet of torque. This is considerably more than the other models’ 176-horsepower, naturally aspirated 2.4-liter engine. Power is put to the wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission. The turbocharged crossover gets 27 miles per gallon on the highway.

The SX also comes with a sport-tuned suspension, eighteen-inch alloy wheels, signature grille, and dual exhaust. Orange and blue interior color packages are also available exclusively to the SX.

The 2011 Kia Sportage SX starts at $25,795 with front-wheel drive, while the all-wheel-drive version begins at $27,295.

Scroll down for more information in the press release, below.


New Model Offers Advanced Turbocharged Engine and Dynamic Handling

    * Kia's popular compact CUV adds powerful yet efficient 2.0-liter Turbo GDI engine for enhanced performance and class-leading fuel economy1
    * SX model offers sport-tuned suspension and unique exterior and interior enhancements

ORLAND, Fl, March 4, 2011 - On the heels of its 2011 International Truck of the Year recognition by ICOTY jurors, Kia Motors America (KMA) today announced the launch of the all-new 2011 Sportage SX compact CUV, scheduled to arrive in dealer showrooms later this month. As part of Kia's design-led transformation, the Sportage has become a strong player within the Kia line-up, offering power and class-leading fuel economy1. SX models take a solid foundation and up the ante with a more powerful four-cylinder turbo engine, exterior styling enhancements and unique interior options. The 2011 Sportage SX front-wheel drive (FWD) features a starting Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $25,7952 while all-wheel drive (AWD) models feature a starting MSRP of $27,2952.

The Sportage SX joins the 2011 Optima Turbo as Kia's second vehicle in the U.S to feature the powerful Theta II 2.0-liter Turbo GDI engine and adds unique exterior and interior features and luxury appointments to provide consumers a high performance and high value CUV. In combination with a highly efficient six-speed automatic transmission, the new Sportage SX features up to 256 horsepower while maintaining class-leading fuel economy1 of 27 miles per gallon on the highway, better than any other turbo-equipped compact CUV on the market today. In addition to powertrain enhancements, the Sportage SX employs sport-tuned suspension featuring firmer shock and strut rates for improved handling and dynamic performance over non-SX models.

"Sportage offers an ideal mix of performance, fuel efficiency and utility for the discriminating compact CUV buyer," said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, KMA. "With the addition of a more powerful Turbo GDI engine, unique interior appointments and improved performance, the Sportage SX makes an already appealing CUV even more fun to drive."

On the outside, SX models receive unique 18" alloy wheels, a signature SX grille, dual exhaust, and special side sill moldings. Exterior updates are complemented by SX-specific interior appointments adding more refinement inside the cabin, including standard aluminum door sills and a sleek new supervision gauge cluster. Available exclusively on the Sportage SX, Orange and Blue interior color packages offer more interior color choices for potential buyers. The Orange Color Package includes orange stitching on the steering wheel, center console, and seats coupled with orange accents on the door panels and air vents. A unique blue patterned cloth seat and blue interior accents are included as part of the Blue Color Package.

More Powerful, Fuel-Efficient SX Engine

Kia Motors' Theta II 2.0-liter Turbo GDI engine delivers significant performance with a powerful inline four-cylinder turbocharged engine that produces up to 256 horsepower and 264 pound-feet of peak torque. The Sportage SX turbo utilizes a twin-scroll design which offers improved combustion efficiency, more available low-end power, and reduced turbo-lag as compared to more traditional single-scroll turbo systems.

The twin-scroll design features two valve-operated exhaust gas inlets responsible for feeding exhaust flow through separate paths into the turbine. Utilizing a divided manifold, exhaust gasses from separate cylinders travel more efficiently into the turbocharger's turbine, avoiding possible interference. The result is a system that improves efficiency and pressure distribution, lowers exhaust and cylinder temperatures, and prevents loss of exhaust energy. The quantity of the air entering each cylinder is increased, resulting in more power.

Sportage LX and EX trims come standard with a 2.4-liter DOHC 16-valve four-cylinder engine with Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT), offering more power (up to 176 hp3) and better fuel economy (22/31 city/highway4) than the previous 2.7-liter V6 engine.

2011 Kia Motors America Product Line

Kia's model year 2011 vehicle line includes the Sorento CUV, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Forte compact sedan, Forte 5-door compact hatchback, Forte Koup two-door coupe, Rio sub-compact sedan, Rio5 sub-compact hatchback and Sedona minivan.

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America (KMA) is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 730 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner of the NBA." In 2010, KMA recorded its best-ever U.S. sales and 16th consecutive year of increased U.S. market share. Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, safety features and new technologies.