I guess I'd just like to be enlightened as to why You own a Kia instead of the competition.
I spent 8 years (in the 80's) as the parts manager for a Toyota dealership. I am well aware of their legendary reliability etc. but the only Toyota 4x4s I could afford had a bazillion miles on them and were rusting away. In the late '90's we took a two week vacation to Seattle and by chance rented a Sportage (2wd). I fell in love with it. Good mileage, roomy and comfortable (I'm very long waisted and can't sit upright in most small cars), and had great visibilty for zipping around in heavy traffic. Four or five years later I landed a good paying job with a 110 mile-per-day commute over winding, hilly roads. As a supervisor, I have to be there regardless of the weather. For the first year I drove my old IH Scout in the winter and a VW in the summer. It soon became apparent that I needed a 4x4 that got decent mileage for year round use. So I starting looking for a Sportage. I found a '96 model (4x4, auto) with a leaky pinion seal that the owner had ignored until the rearend started whining. I bought it and found a parts car on eBay...With stock tires I averaged 24mpg with several tanks as high as 26. After I went to 235's my average fell to 22 (still better than the combined average of my Scout and my VW-with only one vehicle to maintain and license).
I used it to pull a small camper trailer all over the western US and averaged 19 mpg. It was the cheapest, best vacation I've had in my life!
We loved it so much that when my wife's van outlived its usefulness, we bought her a '99 Sportage (4x4 5spd) for her daily driver.
Then last December, a coworker had a '98 2wd that had some mechanical issues due to an improperly installed timing belt. I worked out a trade and will soon have three Sportages on the road.(My kids will be using the 2wd)
The bottom line is, now that I can afford a Toyota, new or otherwise, I won't buy one when I can own three Sportages for the price of one used RAV4 (which is what you should be comparing to the Sportage-not a Taco) with no ground clearance, flex or low range. (Plus there are other advantages to owning a fleet of similar vehicles.)
BTW, while touting the 1st gen. Sportage, it should be noted that a Sportage won the SCORE class 3 championship four times in four attempts.
In 1993 a Sportage won the Paris-Dakar rally and the same vehicle went on to win the 1995 baja 1000 -the only
vehicle to ever win both of those races.
And, back when the 1st gen. Sportage was still on the market, only one other IFS vehicle tested in this article
had a better RTI. There are other accomplishments, but these really stand out in my mind.