Kia has released the first photographs of its global best-seller, the Sportage, which débuts next month.

Kia has released the first photographs of its global best-seller, the Sportage which débuts next month.

The Sportage will make its world premiere at the Paris Motor Show in September and will be positioned as a SUV with the handling and functionality of a MPV.

Yong-Hwan Kim, senior executive vice-president and chief operating officer of Kia Motors, said: “The Sportage is a perfect match for Kia’s new brand identity and will reinforce the SUV offering alongside the Kia Sorento.”

Compared to its class competitors such as the Toyota RAV4 and the Honda CR-V, the Sportage boasts a longer wheelbase and larger overall exterior width and height dimensions.

It also outclasses the competition in terms of interior dimensions, with more leg room, second row seating headroom, and total interior volume allowing for maximum cargo space and storage.

According to , powertrains on offer include 2,0-litre and 2,7-litre V6 petrol engines as well as a 2,0-litre diesel engine mated to a manual or four-speed automatic transmission. Armed with an electronic full-time four-wheel drive system, the V6 produces 130 kW of power at 6 000 r/min. The flagship edition will be available only with an automatic transmission.

Functionally, the Sportage offers spare tyre placement at the cargo area floor, convenient split hatch and an ergonomically designed centre facia. Seating is designed to allow for multiple variations with its fully-flat front seats. The rear seats that split 60:40 can also fold away to provide maximum cargo space.

Safety features include ABS, ESP, traction control system, and side and curtain airbags.

Production of the Sportage will begin in early September for Europe and general markets.