High-spec variants of the popular Kia Sportage could be subject to longer wait times due to component shortages.
Speaking with CarExpert, general manager for product planning Roland Rivero said the worst variant affected is the flagship GT-Line, which accounts for the bulk of demand among private buyers.
“The fact is, Kia Australia and our dealers are struggling to keep up with Sportage demand, with various components suffering from supply shortages,” Mr Rivero said.
“Naturally, the top-of-the-range variants with the most microchips are the most affected.”
“The supply mix coming through is not ideal, in favour of the lower trim variants. Customers are urged to sit tight, while we negotiate for more stock.”
It appears Kia won’t follow other manufacturers in removing features to reduce component usage; e.g. removing premium sound systems with a higher speaker count, or radar sensors for driver assistance systems.
This latest development comes off a very good year for the Sportage nameplate, which returned 18,792 registrations in 2022 – a year-on-year increase of 136.4 per cent compared to 2021. June 2022 was also the first time Kia’s mid-size SUV nameplate achieved more than 2000 sales in a month, an all-time record (2044 units).
It was enough to see the Sportage finish in fourth place in Australia’s largest new vehicle sales segment, behind the Toyota RAV4 (34,845), Mazda CX-5 (27,062), and Mitsubishi Outlander (19,546). The Sportage also managed just shy of 1000 sales more than its Hyundai Tucson twin (17,870).
January 2023 saw 1572 units registered in Australia, growth of 41.6 per cent on the same month in 2022.
Kia Australia offers a total of 11 Sportage variants across four trim levels and three powertrains.
Pricing starts at $32,795 plus on-road costs for the entry-level Sportage S 2.0 FWD manual and climbs to $52,720 before on-roads for the most expensive Sportage GT-Line 2.0D AWD.
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