The facelifted Kia Sportage has been spied undisguised at the Nürburgring.
Looking instantly recognizable, the updated model has been equipped with a new front fascia which features revised air intakes and a less rounded appearance. The crossover also has a new chrome bar, updated headlights and restyled fog lights.
The rear of the crossover largely carries over but a closer inspection reveals some subtle styling changes. The most noticeable differences are the new taillights and the removal of the thin chrome strip that used to connect them. Further below, we can see the rear bumper has been modified to separate the reflectors from the reverse lights.
The minor styling changes continue in the cabin as the Sportage has an updated infotainment system which is framed by a larger metallic bezel. Additional changes are hard to spot but it appears the model features revised switchgear.
As we reported earlier today, the 2019 Sportage will become the first Kia model to be offered with a new 48V mild-hybrid diesel powertrain. Dubbed EcoDynamics+, the powertrain will feature an undisclosed diesel engine, a mild-hybrid starter-generator and an additional 48-volt lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 0.46 kWh. The mild-hybrid starter-generator is connected to the diesel engine’s crankshaft by a belt and it can provide up to 13 hp (10 kW) of electric power assistance. The starter-generator also captures kinetic energy from deceleration and braking to recharge the lithium-ion battery.
The mild-hybrid powertrain will be debut in the European Sportage later this year and it will eventually be offered on the Ceed in 2019.
U.S. specifications remain unconfirmed but it’s possible that engine options will carryover. If this happens, we can expect an entry-level 2.4-liter four-cylinder with 181 hp (135 kW) and 175 lb-ft (237 Nm) of torque. Likewise, there could be a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder which produces up to 240 hp (179 kW) and 260 lb-ft (352 Nm) of torque.