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The Toyota RAV4 has long dominated the compact crossover SUV segment, while the Kia Sportage has been somewhat overshadowed. However, this all changed for the 2023 model year. Now, the 2023 Kia Sportage has one huge advantage over the Toyota RAV4: a wonderful redesign.

2023 Kia Sportage has a redesign, but the Toyota RAV4 hasn’t had one in 5 years

Front angle view of green 2023 Kia Sportage crossover SUV
2023 Kia Sportage | Kia

The compact crossover SUV segment is very competitive, and in recent years the Kia Sportage started to fall considerably behind more popular models, including the Toyota RAV4. However, in a dramatic twist, Kia gave the Sportage a thorough overhaul, and the results greatly impress.

If you desire a crossover SUV with one of the newest and most modern looks for the segment, then the 2023 Kia Sportage could be a good choice for you. Conversely, the RAV4 hasn’t had a redesign in five years. 

The Sportage has some standout exterior design features. This includes the tiger nose grille, which has technical styling and a floating design, as well as the boomerang daytime running lights, which have a distinctive outward shape. Another attractive design feature is the futuristic notch-shaped taillights. Also, the angular fenders and crisp shoulder lines give the vehicle a sharp look.

2023 Sportage has a roomier and more high-tech cabin than the 2023 RAV4

Front angle view of black 2023 Toyota RAV4 crossover SUV
2023 Toyota RAV4 | Toyota

With its redesign, the 2023 Kia Sportage got larger, resulting in a roomier cabin — with a generous 108 cu-ft of passenger space. In comparison, the 2023 Toyota RAV4 only has a total passenger volume of 98.9 cu-ft. For the two crossover SUVs, the most significant difference in interior space is for the rear seats. The Sportage provides 41.3 inches of rear legroom, compared to 37.8 inches for the RAV4.

Also, there’s more storage space in the Sportage. It has 39.9 cu-ft of cargo space behind the rear seats — and 74.1 cu-ft with the rear seats folded down flat. However, the RAV4 provides only 37.6 cu-ft of rear cargo space and a maximum storage capacity of 69.8 cu-ft. 

Furthermore, the Sportage has a more high-tech cabin than the RAV4 — with a sleek and modernistic design that nicely complements the exterior. One of the highlights of the Sportage’s cabin is the available panoramic curved display. It features two 12.3-inch touchscreens — one for the digital instrument cluster and another for the infotainment system. 

However, you can’t get a curved screen for the RAV4. Additionally, while the RAV4 offers a 12.3-inch screen for the digital instrument cluster, the biggest screen available for the infotainment system is 8.0 inches.

Other advantages of the Kia Sportage over the Toyota RAV4


2023 Kia Sportage: Price, New Features, and Overview

In addition to its redesign and roomier and high-tech interior, the 2023 Sportage has some other advantages over the 2023 RAV4. On the safety front, it offers driving assistance features that are not available in the RAV4. This includes driver attention warning, highway driving assist, safe exit warning, and speed limit assist. 

Also, the Sportage has better warranty coverage, with the backing of a 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. In comparison, the RAV4 only has a 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty and a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Furthermore, the Sportage is more affordable. It has a starting price of $25,990 MSRP, compared to $27,975 MSRP for the RAV4. 

With its impressive redesign, the 2023 Kia Sportage has a huge advantage over the 2023 Toyota RAV4. When deciding which crossover SUV to get, this is an important consideration.