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Well I ran across a deal i couldn't pass up and picked up a running 1996 2wd 5sp sportage for $400! It has some electrical issues with the interior (windows, dash lights, airbag light) and some broken or missing interior bits but the engine runs well and i drove it 3 hours home with no issues at all.

We live out in the sticks in northern WA and we needed a fuel efficient commuter car to buzz down into town (30 miles 2000ft elevation change). The kia has 150K miles and the engine runs smooth and has plenty of gettup, tranny shifts perfectly but there's a lot of slop in the stick so i'm thinking perhaps there's something loose in the linkages somewhere. This is my first attempt at messing with a small import car and I've only had the car a day and i've already got tons of questions.

There's a good amount of missing and broken interior bits. Most of the ebay ads i've run across say the parts are for '98 thru 200X but the parts look to be the same (such as window switches, back speaker covers, windows, front bumper, etc. Are '98s interchangeable with '96?

This is a 2WD and i heard that converting it to a 4WD might be a simple bolt on job with enough parts from the local Pick-n-pull. Anyone have any ideas what might be involved in something like that? 4WD would be much more practical during the winter snow/ice and the spring mud on our dirt road. anyone done this have any guess on what i should expect it to cost in used pick-n-pull parts?

The front tires are bald, rear are still ok, but they're all highway tires and living off a dirt road it's nice to have something with more bite. I found treadwright sells nice looking MTs 235/75-15s for $87 each but will they fit without a lift? I don't mind lifting it but it's not on my short list of things it needs to be useful as a commuter, tires and an alignment are.

Main issues are the windows. Most of the switches are busted and the front passenger won't go up and the rear windows won't go down. I'm guessing it's just the busted switches so i'll be replacing them soon as i find the parts but the dash lights are also out so it could be a fuse issue (haven't even looked at the fuses yet. Don't know if there's a way to jump the window motor just to get the passenger window up incase it rains one of these days. (they had it under a tarp).

Lastly, my wife wants floor mats and front and rear seat covers installed. anyone know of decent ones that will fit nicely. I had seat covers that slip off everytime i get in and out of a car.

Thanks and I'm looking forward to learning alot about this little car. I have to say i'm already impressed at the gettup and go it has for a suv with a 4 banger. My other car is a 2000 V10 Excursion so it's a whole nother experience and type of vehicle.
 

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2008 SpectraSX, 2014 Optima LX,2006 Jeep Liberty, Linux Mint Mate
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One thought...
The dash lights in the older KIAs usually need the dash light dImmer ass'y replaced..I'd check that first...
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #3
One thought...
The dash lights in the older KIAs usually need the dash light dImmer ass'y replaced..I'd check that first...
Dave
Thanks for the tip. I'll try to bypass that assembly and see if that solves the problem. I always have my dash lights up full blast anyway :D
 

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96 4 DOOR 4WD SPORTAGE, 2014 Hyundai Elantra GT, 2015 Accent Hatchback Sport
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235's will rub on the front bumper so you will need to trim the underside. You may also rub on the rear shocks.
Going from 2wd to 4wd will require front spindles, front axle assy., front & rear drive shafts, tranny and transfer case, transfer case crossmember, center console. You will need to fabricate front axle mounting brackets and weld them to the frame.
Might be cheaper to buy another sportage with a bad motor and swap out the motor.
When you're ready to lift it let me know.
UPYOURKIA
 

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235's will rub on the front bumper so you will need to trim the underside. You may also rub on the rear shocks.
Going from 2wd to 4wd will require front spindles, front axle assy., front & rear drive shafts, tranny and transfer case, transfer case crossmember, center console. You will need to fabricate front axle mounting brackets and weld them to the frame.
Might be cheaper to buy another sportage with a bad motor and swap out the motor.
When you're ready to lift it let me know.
UPYOURKIA
Everet, other than the mechanical stuff you posted are there any computer issues involved in the swap?

I still have my 4wd parts car, and the thought is still in the back of my mind. All I am missing is a auto transfer case(my donors a stick) Not sure on the drive shafts yet.. I had heard there is a ecu issue involved but no one has pointed outexactly what the issue is.
 
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