Kia Confirms New 5th-Generation Sportage CKD Version For Malaysia

Kia has a major announcement—that the brand-new, 5th-generation Sportage has recently been confirmed for the Malaysian market. Furthermore, according to Bermaz Group CEO Datuk Francis Lee Kok Chuan, the SUV would be locally produced (CKD) at Kulim, Kedah.

Said to be Bermaz Group’s next big model, the Kia Sportage will be made available in Malaysia via its pure petrol variants first, with hybrid options to be introduced at a later date with a target volume of 4,000–5,000 units a year. This is significant for the business because Bermaz Group also represents Mazda, a brand whose next-generation cars are expected to hit Malaysian shores in the next two to three years, and will likely come with higher prices.

Datuk Lee added that, “Kia’s Asia-Pacific office is based in KL and they want to make the ASEAN project successful as they are already doing well everywhere else, except in ASEAN and China. So, now, they are placing a lot of effort on the ASEAN market.”

“They don’t yet have CBU (completely built-up) cars for us to bring in,” the CEO continued, “but the Sportage is selling very well worldwide.”

Marketed as a C-segment SUV, the Proton X70, Honda CR-V, and Chery Tiggo 7 Pro will be the Kia Sportage’s main competitors in Malaysia, so we can expert fireworks when the Kia lands in showrooms.

The 5th-generation Sportage, which debuted globally in 2021, comes with a variety of powertrains, including a 2.0-litre turbodiesel and a 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol engine. There are also a number of hybrid (HEV) and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) options available that cater to individuals who care about the environment or fuel economy.

CARLIST THOUGHTS

Since it was discontinued in Malaysia several years ago, the Sportage is presently not available here. For lovers of the Kia brand as well as those looking for a well-sorted C-segment SUV, the news of the Sportage’s return to the Malaysian market is welcome news. That being said, no precise date for its rollout has yet been established.

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