Kia introduced the American-spec 2023 Sportage earlier in 2021. And now it has designed a different version of the crossover specifically for the European market, and it previewed some of the changes in a series of sketches.
While drawings rarely tell the full story, we can immediately see that Europe's Sportage will look a lot like America's when viewed from the front. It's a wild, head-turning design that will leave no one indifferent. We spot a market-specific front bumper, though it's too early to tell if it will make the transition from the sketch board to the showroom.
Bigger changes are found near the rear end, where the Euro-spec Sportage loses its third side window and instead features a redesigned quarter panel that stretches all the way up to the roof line. It also looks like the rear overhang is significantly shorter, and the firm noted buyers will have the option of ordering a black roof for a touch of contrast.
This is the first time Kia has developed a Sportage specifically for Europe.
"The Sportage will feature a more compact and adventurous profile hinting at heightened levels of agility and performance seen as ideal for European roads," explained the company's British division in a statement. "The global version has significantly increased its size, while the European version spiritually succeeds the fourth generation."
While crossovers reign supreme in Europe, just like in the United States, they tend to be much smaller. Bigger cars can be difficult to drive in crowded urban centers and on narrow roads, and hard to park.
Kia will introduce the European-spec Sportage on September 1; it will stream the unveiling on its various social media channels. Sales will start before the end of 2021. While the shorter Sportage was clearly designed for Europe, we've asked Kia about the odds of seeing it in America, and we'll update this story if we hear more.