News of a sportier SX trim for the 2011 Kia Sportage isn't new to us, but the Korean car company has now given us the full rundown of what we can expect for the U.S.-spec version of the turbocharged crossover.
Opting for the top-of-the-line SX trim on the 2011 Sportage will start at $26,490 for front-wheel drive and $27,990 for all-wheel drive (both prices include a $695 destination fee). That is a healthy $7500 over the front-wheel drive Sportage's base price; the previous range-topping EX trim starts at $23,990 for front-wheel drive.
The most notable addition to the 2011 Sportage SX will be the direct-injected turbocharged four-cylinder engine, already found in the 2011 Kia Optima SX and the 2011 Hyundai Sonata Turbo. The turbo four will be putting down slightly less power than in the sedan applications 256 horsepower in compact crossover form. That's a whopping 80 more horses over the current 2.4-liter four-cylinder offered in the Sportage. All this extra power will come without a penalty to fuel economy, with Kia expecting EPA figures to come in at 22/27 city/highway mpg for front-wheel drive and 21/25 city/highway mpg with all-wheel drive; that is a difference of 4 mpg in front-wheel drive form and 3 mpg in all-wheel drive spec, both on the highway.
Buyers who go for the sportier SX also receive a sport-tuned suspension featuring firmer shock and strut rates, which Kia hopes will improve handling and dynamics over non-SX Sportages. Also included are unique 18-inch allow wheels, a blacked-out SX signature grille, dual exhaust, and special side sill moldings. Stepping into the driver's seat, the Sportage SX greets drivers with aluminum sills and a revised gauge cluster. Optional orange and blue interior packages are available only on SX trim, adding colored accents on the center console, seats, air vents, door panels, and steering wheel stitching.
Kia has already added the SX trim to the Build Your Own section of its website for the Sportage, and the new turbo crossover should hit dealership lots any day now.