Best SUV under $40,000

The Kia Sportage is a solid, all-round package that is not only competitively priced, generously equipped and extremely competent, but also affordable to own and operate.

A five-year unlimited kilometer warranty is included, plus capped price servicing for five years and a free 24/7 roadside assistance program.

Sportage is comfortable, relatively space efficient and easy to live with. The cabin has an invitingly modern presentation with all the switches and controls laid out in a logical fashion, while the instrumentation is clear and simple to read at a glance.

The steering column features reach as well as tilt adjustment and the SLi driver’s seat has plenty of adjustments, including lumbar support.

The 2.4-litre petrol engine, which produces a handy 130 kW of power at 6000 rpm and 227 Nm of torque at 4000 rpm, is coupled to a smooth-changing, six-speed automatic and delivers good performance.

Kia has put a lot of work into refining the suspension for Australian conditions, and has done a good job with the ride. The handling is ideally set up for city and suburban use, which is where most Sportages will spend the majority of their time.

Sportage’s on-demand AWD system, with a diff-lock, hill-start and hill-descent modes, does a reasonably good job off road, though ground clearance is limited.

Australia's Best Cars Best SUV under $40,000 Kia Sportage AWD SLi

Manufacturer’s List Price: $32,990

Kia Sportage AWD SLi - Criteria out of 10


Value for Money   Rating 
Pricing  4C
Depreciation  5M
Running Costs  9H
Fuel Consumption  3C
Warranty and dealer access   5H
Insurance  8L
Standard Features  8M

Design and Function   Rating 
Safety  9C
Environment  8C
Comfort  8H
Space  7M
Practicality  9H
Ergonomics  9H
Build and Finish  8H

On the Road   Rating 
Performance  7M
Ride  7M
Handling  7H
Braking  7H
Smoothness and Quietness   7L
Off-road ability   7M

Note: Level of weighting importance for each score: L = Low, M = Medium, H = High, C = Critical.