2006 Kia Sportage XS V6 2.7 V6 from UK and Ireland
A gas guzzling monster
Intermittent steering wheel shake from 70-80mph.
Very occasional poor starting after very heavy rain overnight.
Occasionally, the rear tailgate wouldn't lock on the central locking loop.
I bought this car in a fit of madness to get a 4x4 for the winter, as it was a couple grand less than an equivalent diesel version.
One thing has dominated my ownership of this car -- FUEL ECONOMY.
I guess it's also partially because fuel costs in the UK are ridiculous and carry on rising, but even so, this car was awful on petrol. The HIGHEST figure I ever got was 23.6 mpg on one tank, the lowest, 20.6 mpg; range was anywhere from 260-290 miles.
I suppose expecting much more from a 2.7 V6, 1.8 ton, auto 4x4 with brick like aerodynamics is too much, but even so...
Anyway, leaving aside the reason I just got rid of it after only 4 months of ownership, I actually liked the car itself.
Big, comfy heated seats, really good kit level (could've done with parking sensors though), a smooth engine and torque sensing 4x4 with a diff lock (great in the snow we just had, took me straight past about 3 stranded cars one day) were all highlights, along with good grip and a very effective cruise control set up.
Criticisms -- Too much body roll, and a crap auto gearbox (responsible in part for terrible fuel economy I suspect), only 4 speed, and so eager to kick down a gear whenever you went anywhere near the loud pedal, that I usually locked it in top gear as soon as I could.
The other annoying thing was I bought 4 new Avon Ranger 85% on road, 15% off road tyres for it, and straight from when they were fitted, got a vibration through the car at around 50mph, and then steering wheel shake between 70-80mph, some days worse than others. It seemed totally tyre related, as it wasn't doing it when I bought it, and I think the problem was getting less the more miles I did on the tyres.
I got the wheels balanced about 4 times, but the problem never really went away, so, don't buy Avon Rangers.
I've now got a Fiat Panda diesel that does 60mpg, and costs me £30 a year road tax, rather than 22mpg on average, and over £400 a year road tax, not to mention insurance, service costs...
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 19th January, 2011