2019 Toyota Rav4 Hybrid vs. 2019 Kia Sportage

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Rav4 Hybrid (except LE) offers optional Rear Cross-Traffic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Sportage doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Rav4 Hybrid. But it costs extra on the Sportage.

The Rav4 Hybrid Limited offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Sportage only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Rav4 Hybrid has standard Safety Connect™, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Sportage doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Rav4 Hybrid and the Sportage have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The Rav4 Hybrid’s 5 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Sportage runs out after 100,000 miles.

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Rav4 Hybrid for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Kia doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Sportage.

There are over 59 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Kia dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Rav4 Hybrid’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Kia vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 18 more problems per 100 vehicles, Kia is ranked 10th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Kia vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Kia is ranked fifth.

Engine

The Rav4 Hybrid’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 38 more horsepower (219 vs. 181) than the Sportage’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Toyota Rav4 Hybrid is faster than the Kia Sportage:

 

Rav4 Hybrid

Sportage 4 cyl.

Sportage SX Turbo

Zero to 60 MPH

7.5 sec

8 sec

8.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.6 sec

16.3 sec

16.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

90.4 MPH

86.4 MPH

86.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Rav4 Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the Sportage:

 

 

 

MPG

Rav4 Hybrid

 

AWD

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. Hybrid

41 city/37 hwy

Sportage

 

FWD

LX 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

23 city/30 hwy

 

 

EX 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

 

 

SX 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

21 city/26 hwy

 

AWD

LX/EX 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

21 city/25 hwy

 

 

SX 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

20 city/23 hwy

Regenerative brakes improve the Rav4 Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Sportage doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Rav4 Hybrid’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Sportage doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission

The Rav4 Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Sportage doesn’t offer a CVT.

Suspension and Handling

For greater off-road capability the Rav4 Hybrid has a 1.3 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Sportage (8.1 vs. 6.8 inches), allowing the Rav4 Hybrid to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

The front grille of the Rav4 Hybrid uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Sportage doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Rav4 Hybrid has .2 inches more front headroom, .7 inches more front shoulder room, .4 inches more rear headroom and 1.3 inches more rear shoulder room than the Sportage.

Cargo Capacity

The Rav4 Hybrid has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Sportage with its rear seat up (37.6 vs. 30.7 cubic feet). The Rav4 Hybrid has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Sportage with its rear seat folded (69.8 vs. 60.1 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

When different drivers share the Rav4 Hybrid Limited, the memory seats make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Sportage doesn’t offer memory seats.

The Rav4 Hybrid’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Sportage’s standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.

The Rav4 Hybrid XLE/XSE/Limited’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Sportage’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Both the Rav4 Hybrid and the Sportage offer available heated front seats. The Rav4 Hybrid Limited also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Sportage.

The Rav4 Hybrid has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Sportage.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Rav4 Hybrid has a standard Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Sportage doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Recommendations

The Toyota Rav4 outsold the Kia Sportage by over five to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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