Kia Sportage: Paddle shifter

Kia Sportage - Fifth generation (NQ5) - (2022-2023) - Owner's Manual / Driving your vehicle / Automatic transmission (Shift Lever) / Paddle shifter

Paddle shifter (if equipped)

The paddle shift function is available when the shift lever is in the D (Drive) position or the manual mode.

Paddle shifter (if equipped)

With the shift lever in the D position

Pull the [+] or [-] paddle shifter once to shift up or down one gear and the system changes f r om automatic mode to manual mode.

Paddle shifter doesn't work at low vehicle speed.

To change back to automatic shift mode f r om manual shift mode, do one of the followings:

  • Pull the [+] paddle shifter for more than one second
  • Move the shift lever f r om D (Drive) to manual gate and return it to D position again

The manual shift mode also changes back to automatic shift mode in one of following situations

  • When the accelerator pedal is gently depressed for more than 6 seconds while driving
  • When the vehicle stops

With the shift lever in the manual mode

Pull the [+] or [-] paddle shifter once to shift up or down one gear.


If you pull the [+] and [-] paddle shifters at the same time, you cannot shift the gear.

Shift lock system

For your safety, the automatic transmission has a shift lock system which prevents shifting the transmission f r om P (Park) into R (Reverse) unless the brake pedal is depressed.

To shift the transmission f r om P (Park) into R (Reverse):

  1. Depress and hold the brake pedal.
  2. Start the engine or turn the ignition switch or ENGINE START/STOP button to the ON position.
  3. Move the shift lever.

If the brake pedal is repeatedly depressed and released with the shift lever in the P (Park) position, a chattering noise near the shift lever may be heard. This is a normal condition.


Always fully depress the brake pedal before and while shifting out of the P (Park) position into another position to avoid inadvertent motion of the vehicle which could injure persons in or around the vehicle.

Shift lock system

Shift lock system

If the shift lever cannot be moved f r om the P (Park) position into R (Reverse) position with the brake pedal depressed, continue depressing the brake, then do the following:

  1. Place the ignition switch or ENGINE START/STOP button in the LOCK/OFF position.
  2. Apply the parking brake.
  3. Carefully remove the knob boots covering the shift-lock release access hole.
  4. Insert a tool (e.g., flathead screwdriver) into the access hole and press down on the tool.
  5. Move the shift lever.
  6. Remove the tool from the shift - lock override access hole then install the knob boots.
  7. If the shift lever does not move even after performing this procedure, have the system inspected by an authorized Kia dealer.


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