2025 Kia Sportage Gets the Digital Treatment, Exposes Its Potential Facelift Early On

2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN 8 photos
Photo: Digimods DESIGN / YouTube
2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN2025 Kia Sportage CGI facelift by Digimods DESIGN
Just like its group partner, Hyundai, Kia America reported an all-time best annual sales result for 2023. Rising 12%, Kia was hot on the trail of Hyundai after it sold 782,451 vehicles compared to the latter's 801k-unit performance.
Together, they sold more vehicles than iconic Japanese automakers like Nissan or Honda, for example. Even Ford's third place or Toyota's runner-up title might be in jeopardy if they keep at it. Of course, there were a few reasons for Kia's outstanding year.

For example, six nameplates reached all-time record sales – helping Kia reach its seventh consecutive year of retail growth. The SUVs and other utility models accounted for 72% of the sales mix, and the electrified family jumped 41 percent in deliveries.

Interestingly, the highest gross was registered by one of the last minivans on the market, Carnival (+93%). Meanwhile, the crossovers were heading into the organic growth season: Niro (+26%), Seltos (+17%), Sportage (+12%), and Telluride (+11%). As such, it is no wonder that Kia feels confident enough to focus on its EV lineup for a while – with the all-new first-ever EV9 ready to star in a very expensive Super Bowl ad.

But what comes next, one might ask? Well, according to the imaginative realm of digital car content creators, it's safe to say that Kia will follow Hyundai, which just updated the best-selling Tucson with a refresh of their own for the popular Sportage compact crossover SUV.

The current NQ5 fifth generation was introduced in June 2021 and is built on the Hyundai Kia's N3 platform. It is related to the Kia Niro and Hyundai Tucson plus Santa Cruz, of course. However, each model has its own design language, and there's virtually no way to mistake the Sportage for the Tucson or vice versa. That's always a good thing, especially in this day and age when badge engineering can be at its absolute worst (like with Renault and some Mitsubishi models – ASX, Colt), right?

Anyway, according to Dimas Ramadhan, the virtual automotive artist behind the Digimods DESIGN channel on YouTube, who has taken up the task of CGI-revealing the Sportage facelift, it's time to imagine that Kia will get inspired by the recent Sorento facelift for the little brother's own mid-cycle updates. As such, the pixel master borrowed some of Sorento's front and rear lighting styling cues and adapted them to fit the smaller dimensions and Sportage's design particularities better.

So, what do you think – is Kia prepared to come out with a Sportage refresh for the 2025 or 2026 model year? And if it does, will it look like this, thoroughly inspired by the upgraded Sportage, or is this merely wishful thinking, and Kia will feature a completely different styling?

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About the author: Aurel Niculescu
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Aurel has aimed high all his life (literally, at 16 he was flying gliders all by himself) so in 2006 he switched careers and got hired as a writer at his favorite magazine. Since then, his work has been published both by print and online outlets, most recently right here, on autoevolution.
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