The KIA Sportage PHEV vs the Volvo XC40 Recharge plug-in hybrid
Ground-breaking innovations or Scandinavian design?
Volvo has always had an excellent reputation in terms of design and safety – something which is reflected once again in the attractive Volvo XC40 Recharge plug-in hybrid, which has been designed for the planet and built for the city. Recently it has seen stiff competition from the new 5th generation Kia Sportage, a truly innovative plug-in hybrid SUV that sets the bar very high. So let's do a comparison.
The new Kia Sportage PHEV is certainly impressive in terms of its appearance. From its modern tiger-nose grille and striking, boomerang-shaped LED headlights to its dynamic rear with razor-sharp signature lighting, the Sportage is all about power and finesse. The car's sophisticated, high-quality interior is centred entirely around the driver. It contains a state-of-the-art curved display, intuitive touch control and super comfortable seats. The cockpit also offers plenty of space for the passengers in the back. In addition, the Kia Sportage PHEV boasts surprisingly practical and clever storage compartments and a generous boot of no less than 540 litres (compared to 450 litres in the XC40 Recharge).
The design of the Volvo XC40 Recharge is bolder and more versatile than ever. Its mission: to provide luxury and comfort, but not at the expense of the environment. It has a modern, natural, leather-free interior. What's more, no less than 95% of this compact SUV is recyclable at the end of its life cycle. The XC40 Recharge's ingenious storage solutions, high-grade materials and unparalleled Scandinavian craftsmanship make any drive a luxurious and healthy experience thanks to the advanced air purification system that constantly monitors the interior and filters out any harmful particles and pollen.
The new generation Kia Sportage has clearly taken the high-tech route, with an unmistakably show-stopping, ultra-modern, integrated curved screen that includes a 12.3" information display and a touchscreen of the same size that allows you to control all infotainment features. Automatic over-the-air updates ensure the Sportage always has the latest software and maps available.
On top of that is a full range of driver assistance systems (autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, motorway and blind spot collision warnings, smart camera system with a 360-degree 3D view and so on) and some truly unique features for this segment. For instance, the dual LED headlights with adaptive driving beam prevents drivers from blinding other road users when using full beam, while the Remote Smart Parking Assist remote control can be used to move the car safely and independently into and out of narrow parking spaces.
Volvo has always focused on car safety. The XC40 Recharge is designed to watch over you. Your safety is embedded in its DNA. It is equipped with all available driver assistance systems and safety programmes: four cameras that guarantee 360-degree visibility when parking, Cross Traffic Alert with Autobrake for reversing in case of reduced visibility, a Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) for safely changing lanes, intelligent technology to detect and avoid other vehicles and road users, and so on. The XC40 is brimming with smart technology and connectivity that is ergonomically controlled by a stunning 9" portrait-style infotainment system.
Performance and range
The Kia Sportage PHEV seems determined to capture the hearts of professional drivers. How? With CO2 emissions of only 26 g/km, extremely low fuel consumption of 1.1 I/100 km and a purely electric driving range of up to 70 km (WLTP). It has all-wheel drive, a powerful performance from 0 to 100 km/h in 8.2 seconds and a top speed of 191 km/h. It also comes with a 13.8 kWh battery that can fully charge in 1 hour 45 minutes thanks to the 7.2 kW on-board charger.
There is no doubt that the XC40 Recharge feels and drives like a true Volvo: it is smooth, efficient and responsive. It accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 8.5 seconds, its top speed is 180 km/h and its combined consumption (2.1 l/100 km) and CO2 emissions (48 g/km) are higher than those of the Kia Sportage. What is its autonomy like? The 8.5 kWh battery offers a purely electric range of 45 km (WLTP). It takes the 3.6 kW on-board charger 3 hours to recharge the battery to 100%. In terms of numbers, then, the Kia Sportage PHEV comes out on top. But when it comes to a new car, you should let your heart decide...
Volvo XC40 Recharge Plug-in Hybrid
- Seats: 5
- WLTP range: 45 km
- Acceleration: 0 to 100 km/h in 8,5s (T4) and 7,3s (T5)
- Top speed: 180 km/h
- Luggage space: 452 litres
- Front-wheel drive
- Charging time: 3h
- Battery capacity: 8,5 kWh
KIA Sportage PHEV
- Seats: 5
- WLTP range: 70 km
- Acceleration: 8.2 s from 0 to 100 km/h
- Top speed: 191 km/h
- Luggage space: 540 litres
- 4-wheel drive
- Charging time: 1h45
- Battery capacity: 13.8 kWh