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2011 Kia Sportage: First Drive Coverage

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It's been a busy week here in San Francisco. Today, High Gear Media hit the streets with the 2011 Volkswagen Jetta--but earlier this week, we sampled the new crossover from South Korea, the 2011 Kia Sportage.

The Sportage is closely related to the Hyundai Tucson, but parked side by side, it's difficult to tell. The Tucson's crests and curves are replaced on the Sportage with a balanced collection of straight edges and a buff stance. Inside, the Sportage wears a set of rectangles that ends up appealing to our testers more than the Tucson's more flashy confines.

And though they're almost mechanical twins--from their 170-horsepower four-cylinder engines to their available all-wheel drive--the Sportage feels a bit better sorted than the Tucson. There's a touch less noise and vibration, a slight improvement in visibility. Above all, the Kia Uvo infotainment controller gives the brand a first take at the kind of Bluetooth-fueled safety that Ford's SYNC promises--and it's unavailable on the Tucson.

We're putting the finishing touches on our full review of the 2011 Kia Sportage. While the magic happens off-camera, we've pulled together the links from all our Sportage coverage from this week, including photos, video and our Twitter-led live Web discussion. Stay tuned for the review, but do get up to speed first with these links:

2011 Kia Sportage: Live Drive

2011 Kia Sportage: Top Residual Value Could Sweeten The Deal

2011 Kia Sportage Techs Up with Uvo, WiFi, Real-Time Traffic

Kia Schools Us in Smart Style with 2011 Optima Interior

2011 Kia Sportage Priced Higher; Turbo Coming Under...$30K?

2011 Kia Sportage: Mega Photo Gallery (And A Free Zune!)

2011 Kia Sportage: Write for HGM, Win A 16GB Microsoft Zune!

 
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