Used Kia Sportage 4x4 2005 - 2010 review

Category: Family SUV

It's cheap and cheerful, but not great to drive

Kia Sportage 4x4 (05 - 10)
  • Kia Sportage 4x4 (05 - 10)
  • Kia Sportage 4x4 (05 - 10)
Used Kia Sportage 4x4 2005 - 2010 review
Star rating

What's the used Kia Sportage 4x4 like?

The Sportage's biggest attraction is its low prices. When it was new, it was an awful lot of car for the money, but its residuals are quite weak, so once it's a used car, things are even better.

There's certainly plenty of room inside, particularly in the back, where there's more leg space than in dearer rivals such as the Nissan X-Trail. The Sportage will take five people in comfort and, thanks to its big boot and 60/40 split rear seats, it makes a fine family car.


It's cheap and cheerful, but not great to drive

  • The Sportage is great value, with good kit and a spacious cabin
  • The cabin is drab, refinement is poor
  • and the drive disappointing

There's also no skimping on kit, with even the most basic models getting air-con and four electric windows. However, in too many places, you're reminded just why the prices are so low. The dash is dour and built from cheap-looking black plastic, for example, while the firm ride, vague steering and occasionally noisy engines make for a disappointing drive.

Ownership cost

What used Kia Sportage 4x4 will I get for my budget?

How much does it cost to run a Kia Sportage 4x4?

Buying the Sportage looks a very attractive proposition: it's already cheaper than the likes of the X-Trail as a new car, and the difference in price is even more pronounced once they are used.

Its fuel economy also looks pretty good, on a par with its sister machine, the Hyundai Tucson, and better than five-door versions of the Suzuki Grand Vitara. Unsurprisingly, the diesel models are the most fuel efficient, but they're also the cheapest to insure, their group 9 rating much lower than the equivalent Tucson and Grand Vitara.

Routine service costs are pretty much what you'd expect compared with other 4x4s, but be prepared for hefty bills if anything goes wrong. Warranty Direct figures show that the average bills on Kias are among the highest of all makes, not far short of those for Audi and Mercedes, although much better than those for Land Rovers and Mitsubishis.

Our recommendations

Which used Kia Sportage 4x4 should I buy?

You're still most likely to find this version of the Sportage at a Kia dealer, and you're best off with a diesel model.

Naturally, this is the most frugal engine - although not by as much as you might expect - but its real advantage is the stronger low-down pull, which is ideal for towing or off-roading. It makes the car much easier in everyday driving, too.

Mind you, the 2.0-litre petrol engine is good, too, and not far off the diesel's fuel economy. The flagship V6 is best avoided - not only does the standard automatic gearbox do its best to sap all its extra power, it's also too expensive to buy and run.

With all models very well equipped, there's no need to pick anything any more expensive than the basic XE trim. XS (standard on the V6) brings climate control rather than air-con, leather upholstery and a sunroof, but it's not worth the extra cash.


What alternatives should I consider to a used Kia Sportage 4x4?