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2021 Kia Sportage vs Seltos

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2021 Kia Sportage vs Seltos
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2021 Sportage vs Seltos - How do they stack up? What are the differences?

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Sporty crossovers have found their place to stay in the world of modern automotive models. Produced by Kia, the Sportage and the Seltos are two similar crossover models that stand out because of their athleticism and enthusiasm for driving. These models are so strikingly similar in appearance that they are nearly identical and may be difficult to pick out from one another. Yet, their differences under the hood and in their cabin are what make them stand out from each other overall. The 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos are also made for different types of buyers, so one appeals more to city commuters while the other aspires to promote off-road fun.

In a crowded market segment, it is easy for crossover models to be overlooked as just another vehicle option. The 2021 Kia Seltos and 2021 Kia Sportage strive to stand out among others, especially for their performance attributes. Heightened styling elements within the interior and an option to include a two-tone color scheme on the exterior are two characteristics that help differentiate these crossover models in a crowd. Fighting to maintain their relevance and individuality, the Kia Sportage and Kia Seltos have seen their fair share of upgrades over the years. In fact, it is this level of innovation that has gotten them to the point they are at today.

Buyers in search of a bit more space in a standard crossover model will find themselves at home in either the 2021 Kia Sportage or the 2021 Kia Seltos. Going above and beyond what traditional crossovers have to offer, the Sportage and the Seltos also invest in tech-savvy multimedia elements and various season-specific exterior attributes.

Size and Styling

Although these two models are impressively similar at first glance, the 2021 Kia Sportage is a larger option than the 2021 Kia Seltos. Geared toward family driving and rugged adventure, the 2021 Kia Sportage is design to make its size match these past times. As a vehicle made for city driving, the 2021 Kia Seltos is more compact. Yet, its status as a crossover makes it larger with more interior space than your typical sedan. A hatch-style trunk also makes loading and unloading easier without adding to its inherent size. The Kia Sportage is so much larger than the Seltos that it is sometimes referred to as a subcompact SUV instead of a crossover. This is indicative of its overall style and rugged appearance.

As a result of the differing uses between these two models, the 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos are also styled quite uniquely. The larger and more robust 2021 Kia Sportage incorporates rounded contours on the outside and headlights that are mounted high on the front. This brings the vision field up to focus on the sharper characteristics of this crossover, giving it a bolder and more aggressive look. In contrast, the sweeping lines of the 2021 Kia Seltos and its boxy stature give a more modern look that is ideal for city style.

Based on the size difference and intended attitude of these two models, you might assume the 2021 Kia Sportage has more cargo area to offer than the 2021 Kia Seltos. However, this is not the case, which is a complete game-changer for potential buyers to consider. Smaller on the outside, the 2021 Kia Seltos is more accommodating for storage on the inside and makes better use of the space it is given. Not only is space for cargo lacking in the 2021 Kia Sportage, but room for passengers in the rear seat is also limited. In contrast, the 2021 Kia Seltos provides plenty of room for storage in the rear, as well as comfortable seating in its rear row.


In the area of power creation and dispersion, the 2021 Kia Sportage excels over the 2021 Kia Seltos exactly as we expected it to. Incorporating a larger engine under its hood, the Kia Sportage offers a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder as its best engine option. When paired with front-wheel drive, the Sportage is one of the quickest crossovers in its respective class. A four-cylinder without a turbo can also be paired with a six-speed automatic transmission in the base model of the 2021 Kia Sportage. The 2021 Kia Seltos also offers two four-cylinder engine options, one of which is turbocharged and another that is not. Providing adequate power, a CVT is paired with the entry-level 2.0-liter and a six-speed automatic transmission is mated to the turbocharged 1.6-liter. Despite these modifications, the 2021 Kia Seltos still cannot compete with the horsepower production of the 2021 Kia Sportage.

Resulting from their varying engine options, the way the 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos feel in your hand while driving is also individualized. The 2021 Kia Sportage promotes its brawn overall, so it adds power to every ride you will take. Equipped with good handling, as all Sportage models are, this large crossover is fun to drive but sturdy, too. The 2021 Kia Seltos is made for a more sophisticated type of ride. Its standard all-wheel drive creates a smooth feel when you are behind the wheel, and it can change directions abruptly thanks to its smaller size. Composed and entertaining, the handling of the 2021 Kia Seltos is better than nearly any other comparable crossover on the market.

Fuel economy is a major factor to consider when comparing two crossover models. Although neither of these models is known for exceptional fuel economy, they each use fuel more efficiently than a full-size SUV would offer. In both its turbo and non-turbo engine styles, the 2021 Kia Sportage falls quite short of the fuel efficiency of its rival Kia Seltos. Averaging just

Comfort, Options and Performance

Both the 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos take pride into the quality of materials they integrate in their cabin design. The Kia Sportage boasts functional features and quality upholstery that give it a look that is useful and classy. The mixture of materials included in this crossover's cabin keep your eyes traveling throughout its interior wondering what you will find next. Flowing a bit more smoothly, the interior of the 2021 Kia Seltos was made for big city living. Made to impress, the cabin of the Seltos is refined and upscale. Inside you will find upscale amenities, like ambient lighting and two tone detailing. Appearing a bit more modern than the Kia Sportage, the interior of the Kia Seltos is quite admirable.

Technology in new crossover models can make all the difference in entertainment and comfort for passengers within. In current years, a move toward tech-based amenities has opened the door for more models to integrate technology into every aspect of a vehicle. The 2021 Kia Seltos takes advantage of this trend and integrates a large 10.25-inch touchscreen across all models. It is also accompanied by a split screen, which is quite impressive even for modern crossovers. Coming in behind the Seltos, the Kia Sports offers a smaller 8.0-inch touchscreen. This model also lacks the potential for modification that other Kia models possess.

The integration of a plethora of tech amenities continues in the 2021 Kia Seltos. Wireless device charging capabilities, a head-up display, and another color display within the gauge cluster sets drivers of this model up for control and success. An optional premium Bose sound system is also a potential upgrade buyers can opt for. While the 2021 Kia Sportage is also quite capable, it is not as well-equipped as the Seltos. Wireless device charging and built-in navigation are optional upgrades, but that is the extent of the available tech amenities offered in this crossover model.

Buying Tip:

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These free services will offer you the lowest prices and supply you with multiple competing price quotes. You will know the best price before you visit the dealer.


If the safety elements and crashworthiness of a new vehicle model is a major consideration for you, then the vast differences of the 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos should be examined. Starting off in the lead, the 2021 Kia Sportage was given a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA for its safety amenities. It was also named as a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS for its crash-worthy structuring and mitigation technology. Not only does it offer a bevy of driver-assistive safety amenities, but it withstands the impact from crashes well, too. In opposition, the 2021 Kia Seltos only achieved a four-star rating from the NHTSA and did not perform well in crash-testing conducted by IIHS.

One of the downfalls of the 2021 Kia Seltos is the lack of standard safety features and driver-assistive safety elements it incorporates. In fact, nearly all its safety amenities are only available as upgrades. Those who invest in the base model Kia Seltos will be disheartened to find a lack of safety elements unless they are upgraded to for additional fees. In contrast, the 2021 Kia Sportage does a great job of offering many of its safety amenities available as standard. Forward-collision warning, lane-departure warning, and lane-keeping assist are just a few examples of basic inclusions in the Kia Sportage. Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are just a few safety enhancements that are available only as upgrades.

Which Model to Choose?

Selecting a crossover model to purchase is a big decision that will affect your lifestyle and wallet for years to come, so it is important to consider every aspect you may find valuable in a new model prior to committing to a purchase. The 2021 Kia Sportage and the 2021 Kia Seltos each have an array of advantages that differ from the other. Yet, these crossovers are also alike in many ways. Prioritizing the facets that you must have in a new model will help evaluate how well each of these options will fit into your life.

If you are a buyer who enjoys adventure and desires performance, the 2021 Kia Sportage is a better option. Disregarding fuel efficiency and popular in-cabin amenities, the Sportage is prepared to take you off the beaten path and on the adventure of a lifetime. Its amenities play well into these aspirations, too. This larger crossover pushes the boundaries of being considered an SUV, which some buyers will appreciate. It also does a better job of incorporating standard safety features as opposed to the limited offerings of the 2021 Kia Seltos.

Yet, if you travel to the city often and need a more fuel efficient model, the 2021 Kia Seltos is a better option. Inside, it offers more tech amenities and convenience elements to make long drives more comfortable. Less powerful but more agile than the Kia Sportage, the Kia Seltos was made for driving on tight roads and fitting into small parking spaces. Yet, this crossover still manages to make the best of what space it was given. Despite its smaller size from the 2021 Kia Sportage, the 2021 Kia Seltos actually has more room within its cabin for passengers and cargo. For all of these reasons, we would prefer the 2021 Kia Seltos over the 2021 Kia Sportage time and time again.

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