Talking Cars 372: Driving the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid

    Plus, how significant are the benefits of all-wheel drive?

    Main theme: This week we share our test results on the 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid. Previous testing revealed that the non-hybrid 2023 Sportage was “long on style and room, short on verve.” Does this hybrid version address the lackluster performance of the non-hybrid powertrain, while at the same time providing a hybrid’s benefit in fuel economy? We also discuss whether the small-SUV segment is particularly suited to the benefits that hybridization sometimes brings.

    Audience question: Is all-wheel drive (AWD) a real safety benefit or just overhyped? 

    Talking Cars 372 podcast panel
    “Talking Cars” panelists Gabe Shenhar, Jen Stockburger, and Keith Barry.

    Photo: Consumer Reports Photo: Consumer Reports

    As with other “Talking Cars” episodes, this one is available free through Apple Podcasts. (Subscribe to the audio or video.) You’ll also find the audio on Spotify (log-in required) and video on YouTube.

    Have a Question?

    We’d love to include it in a future show. Upload your video questions to our Dropbox folder. Please send high-definition (1920x1080) MP4 video files with high-quality audio. Or send an iMessage question to our TalkingCars@icloud.com account.

    Talking Cars

    Browse the complete podcast archive for past shows.


    Jen Stockburger

    I never anticipated that engineering, the auto industry, and a few hundred tire changes and child seat installations would have brought me here: director of day-to-day operations at Consumer Reports' fabulous 327-acre Auto Test Center. The bonus is that the track's location in rural Connecticut leaves me close enough to home to also enjoy my children and husband while still squeezing in time for gardening, riding horses, and hunting for antiques.