2011 Carbuyer Car of the Year - Kia Sportage

The Kia Sportage won our inaugural Carbuyer Car Of The Year award in 2011 - here's why

  • Price when new: £17,000 - £27,000
  • Price now: £3,500 - £13,500

What we said at the time: “The Kia Sportage is a landmark car because it shows off exactly what the customer-focused firm is capable of. With its seven-year warranty, good looks and capable diesel engine range, it’s a vehicle you can choose with your head and your heart.”

The Mk3 Kia Sportage moved away from the agricultural feel of its predecessors and was a fantastic family crossover. It was the first Kia of the modern era, with Audi TT designer Peter Schreyer brought in to give the Sportage a thorough makeover. It still looks relatively fresh, with a ‘tiger nose’ grille, some blocky details and eye-catching chrome touches. Kia gave it a well-designed interior with lots of equipment, while it’s more spacious in the rear seats than a Nissan Qashqai. A 564-litre boot and ISOFIX child-seat mounting points helped sell it to families, as did a then industry-leading seven-year/100,000-mile warranty. In fact, with this model of Sportage sold until 2015, later examples will still be covered under the original warranty.

Two petrol and two diesel engines were available, and you’ll find some cars with four-wheel drive. It may be unfashionable but we think the diesels suit the Sportage better, as they offer cheaper running costs and more pulling power when the car’s fully loaded. You can still expect nearly 40mpg from the petrols, though, and they’ll be your best bet if you don’t expect to be doing many long trips. Even the most basic Sportage gets Bluetooth, cruise control and air conditioning, while our favourite ‘2’ trim adds parking sensors, part-leather seats and a panoramic sunroof. Heated leather seats, bigger alloys, two-zone climate control and xenon headlights await ‘3’ buyers, but you’ll have to go right to the top of the range to get a touchscreen and sat nav.

About £6,000 should be enough to buy a good used example with fewer than 100,000 miles on the clock, while top-spec late-model cars with all the equipment you could possibly desire will cost double that.

Read our Kia Sportage used buying guide here, or check out used Kia Sportage models on Buyacar.

Our other winners in 2011:

Best City CarHyundai i10
Best SuperminiFord Fiesta
Best Luxury Small CarAudi A1
Best Hot HatchbackCitroen DS3
Best Family CarSkoda Yeti
Best Large Family CarFord Mondeo
Best Executive CarBMW 3 Series
Best Large Executive CarBMW 5 Series
Best Estate CarSkoda Superb Estate
Best MPVRenault Scenic
Best Large MPVSEAT Alhambra
Best ConvertibleMazda MX-5
Best 4x4Kia Sportage
Best Luxury 4x4Land Rover Discovery
Best Luxury CarMercedes S-Class
Most Stylish CarJaguar XK
Award For InnovationNissan Leaf

Click to see our 2012 Carbuyer Car Of The Year

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