2020 Kia Sportage vs. 2019 Volkswagen Tiguan

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/06

To prevent power induced skids and loss of control on slick surfaces, the Kia Sportage has standard full range traction control. The Tiguan’s traction control is for low speeds only. Low traction conditions at higher speeds are more dangerous, making the need for full range traction control important.

The Sportage’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Tiguan doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

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

For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Sportage the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 88 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Tiguan was last qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.

Warranty

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The Sportage comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 60,000 miles. Kia will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump-start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Volkswagen doesn’t give free roadside assistance for the Tiguan.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Sportage 4 years and 28000 miles longer than Volkswagen covers the Tiguan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Tiguan ends after only 6 years or 72000 miles.

There are over 18 percent more Kia dealers than there are Volkswagen dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Sportage’s warranty.

Reliability

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To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Sportage has a standard 600-amp battery. The Tiguan’s 360-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Sportage’s reliability 19 points higher than the Tiguan.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Sportage first among small SUVs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Tiguan isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 43 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 25th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 12th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Kia 11 places higher in reliability than Volkswagen.

Engine

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The Sportage SX Turbo AWD’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 53 more horsepower (237 vs. 184) and 39 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 221) than the Tiguan’s 2.0 turbo 4-cyl. The Sportage SX Turbo FWD’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 56 more horsepower (240 vs. 184) and 39 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 221) than the Tiguan’s 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Kia Sportage 2.4 4-cylinder is faster than the Volkswagen Tiguan:

Sportage

Tiguan

Zero to 60 MPH

8 sec

8.9 sec

Quarter Mile

16.3 sec

16.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

86.4 MPH

83.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Kia Sportage uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Tiguan requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Sportage has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Tiguan FWD’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 15.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/06

The Sportage stops much shorter than the Tiguan:

Sportage

Tiguan

60 to 0 MPH

118 feet

134 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

131 feet

135 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Sportage has larger standard tires than the Tiguan (225/60R17 vs. 215/65R17).

The Sportage LX’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Tiguan S/SE’s standard 65 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

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For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Sportage is 1.2 inches wider in the front and 2.1 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Tiguan.

The Sportage SX Turbo AWD handles at .83 G’s, while the Tiguan SEL 4Motion® pulls only .77 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Sportage SX Turbo AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.5 seconds quicker than the Tiguan SEL 4Motion® (26.8 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 28.3 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Sportage’s turning circle is 2.9 feet tighter than the Tiguan’s (34.8 feet vs. 37.7 feet).

Chassis

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The Kia Sportage may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 100 to 450 pounds less than the Volkswagen Tiguan.

The Sportage is 8.7 inches shorter than the Tiguan, making the Sportage easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the Kia Sportage amounts to more than styling. The Sportage has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .33 Cd. That is lower than the Tiguan (.35) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Sportage get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space

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The Sportage has 1.3 inches more front legroom, .1 inches more front shoulder room and 1.7 inches more rear legroom than the Tiguan.

Towing

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The Sportage’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Tiguan’s (2000 vs. 1500 pounds).

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/06

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Sportage has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Tiguan only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Sportage’s available headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Tiguan’s headlights are rated “Marginal” to “Poor.”

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Sportage (except S/LX) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Tiguan doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Kia Sportage (except LX) offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. The Tiguan doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Sportage owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Sportage will cost $290 less than the Tiguan over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Sportage is less expensive to operate than the Tiguan because it costs $128 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Sportage than the Tiguan, including $341 less for a water pump, $121 less for a muffler, $6 less for front brake pads, $468 less for a starter, $180 less for fuel injection, $233 less for a fuel pump, $179 less for front struts and $85 less for a timing belt/chain.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Kia Sportage will be $1768 to $2962 less than for the Volkswagen Tiguan.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/06

Consumer Reports® recommends the Kia Sportage, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Volkswagen Tiguan isn't recommended.

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

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