Some may love it while others might hate it, though on whichever side of the aesthetics fence one may sit, the looks of the Kia Sportage surely offer some talking points. Here in 2.0 CRDi diesel guise with the same GT Line trim as the petrol variant that came before it, Kia’s C-segment crossover goes up against the likes of the Mazda CX-5 and Honda CR-V.

At RM155,356 on the road without insurance, the diesel Sportage is slightly cheaper than its rivals from Mazda (RM175,179 for the 2.2D AWD GLS) and Honda (RM167,700 for the 1.5L Turbo Premium 2WD), though it also does without the active driver assistance the other two have, i-Activsense and Honda Sensing respectively.

As our man Matthew Tong discovers in the video, the diesel powerplant which offers 185 PS and 400 Nm of torque is smooth, effortless, and ultimately the choice of Sportage powertrain to go for, especially in contrast with the petrol version’s outputs of 155 PS and 192 Nm of torque. Kia’s claimed combined fuel consumption is 6.5 litres per 100 km.

Plenty of kit on offer here, with the exterior adorned with xenon headlamps, LED DRLs, “ice cube” fog lamps, LED tail lamps and 19-inch wheels with 245/45 tyres. Inside, it gets a 4.2-inch TFT colour multi-info display, a seven-inch centre touchscreen, auto-dimming rear view mirror, reverse camera, dual-zone auto air con, leather seats and electric front seats with electric lumbar for the driver.

On the safety front, the Euro NCAP five-star rated Sportage GT Line diesel gets six airbags and ESC as standard, front and rear parking sensors, cruise control, electronic parking brake with auto hold an a tyre pressure monitoring system. Other equipment includes keyless entry with push-button start, paddle shifters and a three-way Drive Mode Select with a choice of Eco, Normal and Sport.

Rear passengers get a set of rear air-con vents, and when more cargo space is required, its 466-litre boot can be expanded for greater capacity courtesy of its 60:40 split-folding rear seats; exterior colours include Cherry Black, Mercury Blue, Fiery Red, Snow White Pearl and Mineral Silver. For full, detailed specifications of the Kia Sportage 2.0L AWD GT CRDi and to compare against its rivals, head on to CarBase.my.